Parents sue school following roller skating accident

NEW CUMBERLAND-A New Cumberland husband and wife are suing Hancock County Schools for injuries their son suffered in an October 2012 roller skating accident at Oak Glen Middle School.

Robert and Cassandra Kranis accuse the school board and their son Logan’s teachers of acting “negligently, carelessly and/or recklessly,” causing Logan to break his ankle and suffer strained multiple ligaments in his leg, ankle and foot.

The lawsuit, which does not name the teachers, has been assigned to Hancock County Circuit Court Judge James Mazzone.

The civil action stems from a week-long activity at Oak Glen Middle School that required students in a physical education class to use roller skates. The Kranises did not sign the requisite permission slip for their son or pay the $10 roller skate fee, the lawsuit said.

“(They) never intended nor wished for their son … to use roller skates at Oak Glen Middle School at any time,” the lawsuit said.

During the week of Oct. 15-19, 2012, Logan sat on the bleachers while other students used roller skates for the first four days. On Friday, Logan’s teachers “required” him to wear the roller skates and suggested he use a garbage can to maintain his balance, the lawsuit said.

“(Logan) put on roller skates as instructed by his teachers and attempted to skate, but was clearly having difficulty maintaining balance,” the lawsuit said.

Within minutes, Logan fell and broke his ankle, the lawsuit said, noting that he “suffered severe and disabling personal injuries, was forced to seek medical treatment and incur medical expenses.”

Furthermore, the Kranises “sustained damage in the form of out-of-pocket pecuniary loss, as well as aggravation, inconvenience, mental anguish, lost wages and other damages and expenses,” the lawsuit said.

The couple, represented by Weirton attorneys Michael G. Simon and Kevin M. Pearl, are asking for a jury trial and “all damages allowed under applicable law.”

The school district, through Wheeling attorney Thomas E. Buck, denied the charges.

“The defendant admits that the plaintiff fell,” Buck said in an answer filed last week. “The defendant is without sufficient information to form a belief as to the truth of the (allegations pertaining to Logan’s injuries) and, therefore, denies the same and demands strict proof thereof.”

The district also admitted that Logan “voluntarily put on roller skates,” “put on the roller skates appropriately,” “roller skated” and used a garbage can as an “assistive device.”

But the school district denied any “negligence, carelessness and/or recklessness” regarding the incident.