HOWELL - A former kindergarten student in New Jersey secured a $170,000 settlement after injuring her hand and arm going down a school playground slide that was too steep, according to court records.
On Oct. 14, 2014, the then-kindergarten student was using the slide at the Griebling Elementary School playground during recess, according to a civil complaint filed in state superior court in June. She “slid down the side at an excessive rate of speed due to the steep slope of the slide causing her to fall off and sustain significant injuries to her right hand and arm.”
The slide in question was angled at 35.2 degrees to the ground, despite a federal standard that slides for preschool- and school-aged children should be no greater than 30 degrees, according to the complaint.
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Ciro Tufano, an attorney for the girl and her family, wrote that the school district was negligent for failing to keep equipment up to standards and for failing to maintain safe premises. He also wrote that the school district failed to properly supervise or protect children using the slide.
In August, Superior Court Judge Owen McCarthy signed an order to enter judgment indicating that the girl’s family and the township school board had agreed to a $170,000 settlement.
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Of the settlement, $16,479 will go to pay the girl’s medical bills and $43,563 will go to her lawyer. The bulk of the settlement will go into an account for the girl to access when she turns 18, according to the order. The order mentions the school and Board of Education but not the township, which was also a defendant in the case.
It is not clear whether the board or district has an insurance policy that would pay part or all of the settlement, nor is it clear whether the slide has been updated or replaced. The district business administrator was not immediately available for comment.
Tufano also was not immediately available for comment.
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This article originally appeared on Asbury Park Press: New Jersey student gets $170K after hurting arm on slide during recess