Toilet-Tipping Prank Results in $5 Mil. Settlement in Sullivan County Court
A man who was rendered quadriplegic when two of his relatives accidentally tipped over the portable toilet he was using in an attempt to play a practical joke on him has settled with the toilet's manufacturer and installer, as well as the two relatives, for a total of $5 million in the Sullivan County Court of Common Pleas.
An examination of The Legal's sibling publication, PaLaw magazine, indicates this is the largest reported settlement in Sullivan County in at least the 20 years since the publication first began tracking the data.
In Adams v. Poly-San, according to the plaintiffs' pretrial memorandum, plaintiff Donald H. Adams III went on a camping, hunting and fishing trip with his cousins-in-law, defendants Gerald Grater and Barry Weller, to a lodge that did not have indoor plumbing.
While there, according to the plaintiffs' memorandum, Adams went to use the portable toilet and Grater and Weller decided to play a practical joke on him by backing their truck up to the portable toilet unit's door in order to lock him inside.
Grater and Weller then proceeded to bang on and shake the portable toilet unit, inadvertently causing it to tip over, according to the plaintiffs' memorandum.
Adams fell and landed on his neck, rendering him quadriplegic, the plaintiffs' memorandum said.
According to the plaintiffs' memorandum, Adams suffered laminar fractures to his fourth and fifth cervical spine vertebrae and a burst fracture to his fifth cervical spine vertebra.
Adams was rushed to Robert Packer Hospital and then airlifted to Thomas Jefferson University Hospital for surgery, according to the plaintiffs' memorandum.
After seven days, he was transferred to Magee Rehabilitation, where he remained for two months, according to the plaintiffs' memorandum.
Adams is now completely paralyzed from the shoulders down and has a neurogenic bladder and bowels, the plaintiffs' memorandum said.