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Londono v. Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority
United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
766 F.2d 569 (1985)
Jessica Londono (plaintiff) was two-and-a-half years old when she sustained a laceration to her leg while riding a Westinghouse Electric Corporation (defendant) escalator to a Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (Washington Metro) metro rail station. Sandra Londono (plaintiff), Jessica’s mother, sued Washington Metro and Westinghouse Electric Corporation (defendant) under the theory of res ipsa loquitur, claiming there was a possibility that a protruding object on the escalator wall cut Jessica. However, none of Jessica’s four adult relatives accompanying her observed a protruding object. Washington Metro and Westinghouse inspections both before and after the accident also failed to find a protruding object. Westinghouse submitted evidence indicating maintenance or repair work was done eight days earlier. Washington Metro submitted a photograph of Jessica’s wound, arguing that a protruding object would produce a diagonal cut and that Jessica’s laceration was vertical. The district court held that the Londonos did not demonstrate a probability that the escalator, rather than some other instrumentality, caused Jessica’s injury and granted summary judgment in favor of Washington Metro.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Starr, J.)
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