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Family sues Coquitlam for damages in alleged playground slide mishap

Lawsuit claims girl suffered a leg fracture and a shoulder injury while playing on a slide at Rochester Park.
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A lawsuit against Coquitlam on behalf of a teenage girl was filed in B.C. Supreme Court on Nov. 7, 2022, who claims she suffered several injuries after sliding down Rochester Park's steel tube slide.

The guardian of a Coquitlam teen is suing the city for pain and suffering she allegedly sustained during a playground incident two years ago.

The name of the girl, who was 11 at the time of the reported injury, is not being named as she is a minor.

However, the petition filed in B.C. Supreme Court on Nov. 7 claims she was injured when she slid down a slide in Rochester Park in June 2020.

"The plaintiff was injured while sliding in the steel tube slide caused by a metal slip inside of the steel tube slide, left uncovered by the negligence of the Defendant, its employees, servants and agents," the statement of claim reads.

"She suffered injuries to her left shoulder, and a left leg fracture," the suit claims, as well as others that "may be disclosed by clinical evidence."

The City of Coquitlam has 21 days to respond to the suit and accusations that it failed to maintain the slide properly.

According to the statement of claim, the city "allowed the dangerous condition to exist and failed to implement a regular, adequate or any program of cleaning and maintenance of the premises" or warn the public that the slide was "unsafe for public use."

Damages sought include reimbursement of expenses including the cost of prescriptions, transportation expenses, hospital and ambulance expenses, continuing medical expenses, care costs, domestic assistance/replacement services, expenses for family and friends rendering assistance as well as expenses "yet to be determined."  

The suit alleges the girl suffered pain, inconvenience and loss of "enjoyment of life," and believes she should be compensated.

Parks infrastructure manager Wendy Wiederick told the Tri-City News the city is unable to comment on the case before the court.

However, she said the city does regularly maintain playground equipment.

"The City is committed to providing safe community and recreation amenities in Coquitlam, which includes a comprehensive playground maintenance program that includes regular playground inspections by qualified certified staff. Inspectors will correct deficiencies on site if possible or identify need for follow up work or repairs as required."

She further stated that Coquitlam parks teams "routinely and regularly visit our parks to assess and address items requiring maintenance."

Members of the public are also encouraged to contact the city if "they see something needing" its attention.

This can be done by emailing parks@coquitlam.ca or by calling 604-927-6300.