The Seattle PI reports a family is demanding answers after their little girl got pierced by a used syringe that had been left in a hotel bed.
The syringe, which was caked with dried blood, pierced through the mattress cover and poked the girl’s right heel as she crawled into her bunk bed at Guest House Inn and Suites in Aberdeen.
“There were syringes, plastic bag, bloody bandage all underneath the mattress cover. We were really shocked and freaking out,” said the girl’s mother. “It scared us to death.”
Now the family wants to know how it got there, and what health risks the girl faces.
“Our main concern is HIV disease, and hepatitis B or C,” said the girl’s mother.
But a hospital told them it could take a year before doctors know for sure whether the girl has contracted any disease; the family was told the girl would need regular blood work for 12 months before they can be sure she is OK.
The family stayed at the hotel another night, and was angry to learn the hotel charged them for the room despite the incident.
The hotel’s general manager said staff members contacted police immediately, but will not refund the family until they determine exactly how the needle got under the mattress cover.
This story exemplifies the type of situation in which there may be a premises liability claim against the hotel. When a minor child is injured due to the negligence of another, generally both the child and his or her parents are entitled to recovery. Guests in hotels are considered to be “invitees” and in most cases the hotel owes them a heightened duty of care. If the syringe got into or was left in the bed due to the hotel’s negligence, then the hotel breached its duty of care and the girl and her family would be entitled to recover any damages