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Supreme Court's Republican Majority continues hot August streak of insurer rulings

The Republican majority of Michigan's Supreme Court has issued nearly a dozen rulings this month dismissing personal injury claims.  It has not issued a single opinion sustaining any injury claim.  One of the latest was a severe injury claim brought by Marcy, Patricia and Christopher Hill after they were burned in a gas explosion.  The Hills had sued Sears, Roebuck and several installers after they installed an electric dryer in the Hills' new home without taking any action to disable the gas line that had served the previous owner's gas dryer.  When Mrs. Hill attempted to stop a water leak, she apparently opened the gas line allowing a slow leak to develop and ultimately causing the explosion.

The Republican majority of the Supreme Court held that the installers failure to address the existing gas line and their installation of the new electric dryer in front of it did not make the line any more dangerous than it had been, and therefore the installers were not responsible for any part of the injuries suffered by the Hills.  The Republican majority simply asserted the position that installing the electric dryer in front of the active gas line did not make the gas line more dangerous, without addressing the question of whether the Hills might have eliminated the hazard if they had been informed of the danger or if the line had been left exposed until it was deactivated.

It seems to us like a hidden potential gas leak is, in fact, more dangerous than a potential gas leak that is prominently exposed.

Thompson O’Neil, P.C.
309 East Front Street
Traverse City, Michigan 49684
Toll Free: 1-800-678-1307
Fax: 231-929-7262