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Woman suffers traumatic brain injury at track meet

Traumatic brain injuries typically result from a blow, bump or jolt to the head that disrupts the normal functioning of the brain. While a traumatic brain injury can range in severity from mild to severe, even the mildest TBI can cause changes in a person's physical, emotional or cognitive states and abilities. Victims often require ongoing treatment and extended rehabilitation in health care facilities; even in less severe cases, the care and treatment required are costly.

In a state north of Texas, a woman who suffered a traumatic brain injury will be paid a combined settlement of $350,000 to help with the medical costs and treatment she will undoubtedly need. The woman was attending a high school state track meet in 2014 when she was hit in the head by a discus. Due to the TBI and other injuries, she incurred significant medical expenses.

The Omaha Public Schools (OPS) and the Nebraska State Activities Association (NSAA) will each pay half of the settlement. The lawsuit claimed that the designated area where the plaintiff – now aged 83 – was standing as a spectator did not have a sufficient safety barrier between the athletes and the attendees. The complaint also alleged that NSAA and OPS had failed to provide a safe area from which spectators could watch the competition with minimal risk, and that no warning was given that a discuss had been thrown.

The settlement amount from each organization will be at least partially covered by insurance. While the settlement does not constitute an admission of liability, safety measures at the field have since been made. A spectator fence has been pushed back, and additional signs warn attendees of the risk from flying objects. Anyone in Texas who has suffered a traumatic brain injury under similar circumstances or in any type of accident can consult a personal injury attorney to discuss the possibility of pursuing a claim for monetary damages.

Source: omaha.com, "Nebraska woman hit in head by discus at state meet will be paid $175,000 each by OPS, NSAA", Erin Duffy, April 13, 2017

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