What to do if I was at a gas station and one of its pumps had a faulty hose and I was sprayed in the face and eye with gas?

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What to do if I was at a gas station and one of its pumps had a faulty hose and I was sprayed in the face and eye with gas?

It also covered my car outside and on the inside. I ended up being OK after a day. The gas station is obviously asking for any receipts and such and when I originally spoke with them they stated they wouldn’t pay for any medical bills so I didn’t go to a doctor. Is there anything I can do with this situation?

Asked on October 7, 2014 under Personal Injury, Michigan

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

If the hose was defective (and it wasn't, for example, that you had a problem operating it, dropped it while it was in operation, etc.), then they are potentially liable for your actual out-of-pocket costs--such as if you had to get the car professionally cleaned or had an upholstery replaced; or medical bills, if you had gone to the doctor. Since you were "OK after a day," you cannot recover anything for pain and suffering ("pain and suffering" awards are only for long-lasting, significant impact on your life), and there is no recovery for inconvenience, so all you can get is reimbursement for out-of-pocket expenses. If they will not voluntarily pay you, you'd have to sue to get the money; however, depending on much is at stake, it might not be worth the time and cost of a lawsuit.


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