Archive for $15000 restitution

Alleged Construction Injury at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Leads to Lawsuit

A lawsuit has been filed in Orange Circuit Court in Orange County, Florida by a construction worker and his wife. The worker, who was not employed by Disney at the time of the alleged incident, Robert Howard, claims that he incurred an injury while working on the premises of Disney’s Animal Kingdom in 2016. The lawsuit names as defendants Disney, MLC Theming and Total Demolition Services.

According to the lawsuit filed, Robert Howard says he was digging a ditch that was to be used to lay a foundation for new animal enclosures in Animal Kingdom. At some point, the ditch allegedly collapsed on him. An attorney for the plaintiff, Michael Damaso, stated in court documents, “Robert W. Howard was injured as a result of a dangerous condition on the premises, to wit: an unsafe worksite.” Interestingly, no record of injuries at Disney’s Animal Kingdom have been reported to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) by Disney, Total Demolition Services or MLC, according to a publicly accessible federal database on or around the date that the incident allegedly occurred, May 11, 2016. However, according to Stephanie Bornstein, a University of Florida associate law professor, only work-related injuries that result in hospitalization or fatality are required to be reported to OSHA. She states, “That’s what is surprising to most people. OSHA is really important in what it does, but it has limited resources and limited scope in the law.”

The lawsuit seeks restitution of more than $15,000. It’s unclear what the injuries were, as the lawsuit does not go into details about the alleged injuries. The plaintiff’s attorney, Michael Damaso, stated the lawsuit was filed in an effort to determine what went wrong so it doesn’t happen again. “Nothing is more important to us than the safety of those who visit and work at our resort. We will respond to the allegations, as appropriate, in court,” said a spokesperson for Disney when reached for comment. Neither MLC Theming nor Total Demolition Services were able to be reached for comment. Total Demolition Services has been listed as an inactive business since 2017 on Sunbiz, Florida’s business registration department. OSHA representatives also did not comment when asked about the injury.