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Chippewa County wrongful death tubing case settled

On June 25, 2011, a 29-year-old Eau Claire father died in a tubing accident near Holcombe Dam. The victim was riding in a commercially-made tube pulled by a boat, when the tube hit one of the concrete pillars located under County M. At the time, the boat was occupied by the 14-year-old driver and three adult passengers.

Wisconsin law allows a child of at least 12 years of age to operate a boat as long as he or she has successfully completed a boat safety course. The driver of the boat had successfully completed the required course prior to the day of the accident. The victim's family filed a wrongful death suit, claiming negligence of the driver and three other individuals. The boat's owner was not named in the suit.

Attorneys for the family of the victim finally reached a settlement with the defendant. The victim's five-year-old daughter will receive approximately $175,000, with the remainder of the settlement going toward funeral expenses and attorney's fees. The funds will be held in a restricted fund for the benefit of the girl and her mother.

Losing a loved one in a tragic accident is a painful experience for everyone involved. Many people who have suffered such a loss do not realize that they may be entitled to compensation, including medical bills, funeral expenses, and lost wages. A person who loses a spouse, parent, or child may also be able to file a loss of consortium claim to recover for the damage to that relationship. Victims who lose a family member due to someone else's negligence should contact an experienced personal injury attorney to discuss their options for recovery.

Source: The Chippewa Herald, "Settlement reached for fatal tubing accident," The Herald, Dec. 28, 2012

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