A family is challenging the Greater Vitoria School District over a Lambrick Park baseball academy incident that occurred in the indoor soccer field of Oak Bay Recreation Centre on Oct. 25, 2018. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)

Family of Lambrick baseball student files claim against school district for severe injury

School district claims students at fault for injury involving pitching machine

The family of a student in Lambrick Park secondary’s baseball academy has filed a civil suit against the Greater Victoria School District over a 2018 incident with a pitching machine that caused a severe head injury.

Filed in June, the suit claims that on Oct. 25, 2018, the plaintiff, a male Lambrick baseball academy player who is now 16, was setting up batting equipment with another student in the Oak Bay Recreation Centre.

The Lambrick baseball program uses the covered facility during the fall and winter months for indoor training, including hitting off of pitching machines.

The claim alleges that another student released a ball into the pitching machine and the ball accidentally struck the plaintiff in the head.

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A CT scan on the plaintiff diagnosed a skull fracture, brain hemorrhage and severe concussion, according to the claim.

The civil suit claims the school district is guilty of negligence in failing to mitigate the risk of brain injury.

The claim asks for financial compensation for damages, as well as wage loss and cost of care the family incurred during recovery. It also says no student enrolled in the program “was told to wear a helmet, nor were they provided helmets, or monitored for their use.”

“There was not adequate staff or supervision present at the premises when the accident occurred,” the claim states.

In its court-filed response, the Greater Victoria School District denies wrongdoing.

The district’s response says the plaintiff, “contrary to prior instruction, entered the batting cage area while [another student] was lining up the pitching machine to ensure the balls were crossing home plate.” It was during this time a ball “collided with the plaintiff.”

The district also claims that the plaintiff and the other student failed to follow instructions and “failed to ensure that no person was within, or about to enter, the trajectory of the pitching machine prior to loading the pitching machine with a ball.”

None of the plaintiff’s allegations or defence claims have yet been proven in court. A hearing date has not been set.

reporter@oakbaynews.com

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