SACRAMENTO – An individual alleges he was burned while sledding because of a controlled fire conducted by a federal agency that was hidden and left burning.
Gianfranco Rufino filed a complaint on Nov. 16 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California against United States of America and Does 1-100 alleging negligence under the Federal Tort Claims Act.
According to the complaint, the plaintiff alleges that on Nov. 14, 2015, he was severely injured while sledding down a hillside in South Lake Tahoe when he unknowingly stopped his sled on top of one of many burning piles of debris that were hidden and left smoldering from a controlled fire conducted earlier by the United States Forest Service, an agency of the defendants. As a result of the dangerous condition of the said public property, the suit states he suffered second-degree burns on his back, buttocks, feet and legs.
The plaintiff holds United States of America and Does 1-100 responsible because the defendants allegedly failed to warn about the dangerous areas, failed to inspect and maintain premises in a safe condition and failed to monitor the burning project.
The plaintiff requests a trial by jury and seeks judgment against the defendant, damages, interest, costs of suit, and further relief as to the court deems proper. He is represented by Frederick Schenk, Angela Jae Chun and Jillian L. Ferrario of Casey Gerry Schenk Francavilla Blatt & Penfield LLP in San Diego.
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California Case number 2:16-cv-02719