Jakob Zuhr Lost Hand In Log Splitting Accident While Acting As A Volunteer For Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times In The San Bernardino National Forest
MOUNTAIN CENTER, CALIFORNIA (September 23, 2018) A teenager identified as Jakob Zuhr had his hand amputated in a log splitting accident while volunteering at Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times in order to get community service hours needed for graduation.
The camp is located in the The San Bernardino National Forest and provides assistance to children who have been diagnosed with cancer.
Jakob Zuhr was working with another volunteer to cut firewood. He says that he was holding the log at both ends when the lever was pulled. The blade came down and crushed his hand.
Jakob Zuhr told reporters that the accident could have been prevented if safety protocols were followed. The volunteer operating the machine became distracted when their grandchild tripped just before they pulled the lever.
The victim was airlifted to the emergency room, but doctors were unable to save his hand. Jakob Zuhr said that Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times gave a brief safety demonstration and that safety procedures were not followed.
A Go Fund Me has been set up to help the victim with medical expenses. An investigation into the log splitting accident remains ongoing at this time.
Liability In Log Splitting Accidents
Companies and charities have a responsibility to keep their premises reasonably safe and to take steps to remove active hazards. Many decades ago charitable organizations in California and other states were immune from civil suit based on the charitable immunity doctrine. But that law has since been abolished and a charity or non-profit could be held liable as would any other business.
When an employee of a business or charity acts negligently and causes an accident, the company or charity that they work for may be held vicariously liable. Generally speaking, charities are responsible for the negligence of their employees who are working within the course and scope of their duties. Negligence is simply any act or lack thereof which causes injury to a person. So, if a person operating a dangerous piece of machinery like a log splitter becomes distracted and injures someone that could very well qualify as negligent.
In many circumstances, this can also apply to the volunteer of a charity. There was one court case in California where a non-profit was found liable for the negligence of a volunteer scuba instructor after a student drowned. In that same case the court pointed out that when non-profits that engage in activities that are extra hazardous or inherently dangerous that may subject them to liability. Victims that have been harmed while volunteering at a charity may have the ability to file a premises liability claim for damages including lost wages, medical bills and pain and suffering.
Getting Help After A Log Splitting Accident
We at West Coast Trial Lawyers extend our thoughts and prayers to Jakob Zuhr and his family as he continues to recover from this horrific accident. This should never have happened. What kind of short-sighted, irresponsible adult thought it was a good idea to have kids operate something as dangerous as a log splitter. Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times needs to be held accountable for what has happened. This is a life changing injury for this young man. We encourage everyone to donate to the GO FUND ME account that has been set up to help pay for his medical bills.
If you or someone that you love has been injured in a log splitting accident while volunteering for a non-profit you may have legal recourse. Our team of personal injury lawyers are here to help in any way that we can. We focus exclusively on helping accident victims and have recovered over 1 billion dollars for our deserving clients. We will work tirelessly to get you the best medical coverage and every dollar that you deserve. You owe us nothing if we don’t win your case. Call us today for a free consultation about how we can help you (888) 888-9285.
- Victoria Spilabotte. Teenager loses hand while volunteering at a camp for kids with cancer. September 24, 2018
- City News Service. Teen injured in log splitter accident at forest camp near Mountain Center; airlifted out for treatment. September 22, 2018.
- Christopher R. Spock. An Unusual Log-splitter Injury Leading to Radial Artery Thrombosis, Ulnar Artery Laceration, and Scapholunate Dissociation. Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine. September, 2008
- Dale Vogelsanger. Log Splitter Safety: How To Safely Use A Log Splitter. 2018
- Lucy Campbell. Risk of Amputation Prompts Recall of Log Splitters. April 1, 2009
- Nolo Staff. What is Premises Liability? 2018
- SIOBHAN KELLEY. Risky Business: There’s liability for the acts of your volunteers. June 4, 2018