Child bitten by rabid bat in WalMart pizza aisle

Discussion in 'Up to the Minute' started by wfgodot, Sep 3, 2011.

  1. wfgodot

    wfgodot Former Member

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    First, it was snakes in the gardening section. AND NOW....

    'It flew down the pizza aisle': Five-year-old girl attacked by a rabid bat as she shopped with her mother at Walmart
    And WalMart appears to be refusing to pick up the medical bills.

    More, with pictures of child, mom, WalMart, bat, at Daily Mail link above.
     
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  3. Lucid

    Lucid Reality continues to ruin my life.

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    Poor kid.. I once peered into a trash can only to have a cat jump out and try to eat my face. I was about 4... I still remember the rabies shots I had to get. I swear I was getting shots weekly for about 3 months.

    I think Walmart should pay because it is morally the right thing to do... to help out. Not like they can't afford it. Lots of people are uninsured. A lot don't qualify for help (such as myself). My son gets it through the state (I have to pay for it, but its cheap) but if it had been me that was bit, I'd be pretty screwed. They don't have an insurance program for adults. Or at least not one for those living above poverty level.

    But I don't think they are responsible. I see birds in there all the time, too. What are they supposed to do, keep nets over their doors? They can't be held negligent if they didn't know the bat was there, and unless somebody reported it to them prior, then how could they know? Are employees supposed to be posted to monitor every aisle and nook and cranny?
     
  4. badhorsie

    badhorsie Mouth operational, brain elsewhere...

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    Poor child :eek:
    Is it true that rabies shots are given in the stomach?
     
  5. Lucid

    Lucid Reality continues to ruin my life.

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    When I had them, it was always in my thigh. But that was in the 80's... so I don't know.
     
  6. mysticrose

    mysticrose The key to change... is to let go of fear

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    Walmart should help with all the medical bills for this child, a company whom brings in an estimated $ 1.5 billion a day can afford some pocket change, dont you think ?
    I am praying this girl heals quickly ......
     
  7. Quiche

    Quiche New Member

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    Wow, I wonder if she was swinging her legs in the cart or something-- I'm guessing it was rabid, as well. How traumatic.

    A rabid pest in their aisles? Yeah, I'd sue. jmo
     
  8. wfgodot

    wfgodot Former Member

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    Now - wouldn't WalMart be insured about something like this? I mean, if I come over to your house and, indoors, a bat bites me, that's covered by homeowner's, right? Why would a big box store not have to carry similar coverage, especially when it's noted for the occasional bird or five flying around its ceilings?

    An earlier tale of human - possibly-rabid-bat contact involving rabies shots (though it doesn't say where Manu got them):

    Ginobili has rabies shots (ESPN)
     
  9. bessie

    bessie Administrator Staff Member Administrator Moderator

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    An initial human rabies immune globulin (HRIG) injection is given to a person who's never received a rabies immunization followed by five vaccine injections over a 28 day period.

    http://www.emedicinehealth.com/rabies/page8_em.htm

    The injections will be painful, but I'm more concerned by the side effects described by the mother. I pray there will be no permanent tissue damage. It doesn't sound like WM is refusing to accept responsibility, but they have to go through the insurance claims process. The mother or her insurance company should eventually be reimbursed. The mom says she asked WM to pay after the third trip to the ER, but did she report the incident immediately?

    There's additional information at this site about rabies and bats.
    I wonder what precautions Walmart has taken to ensure no one else is exposed.
     
  10. Lucid

    Lucid Reality continues to ruin my life.

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    I used to work for an insurance company that handled liability claims on this sort of thing. Just judging by the way we handled things, Walmart wouldn't be at fault for this. There is nothing they could have done to prevent it - and they even said they had hired exterminators in the past. It sounds like they took precautions against this sort of thing. This didn't happen because they were negligent - it was simply a wild animal that ended up in the wrong place. Walmart isn't at fault for that... it isn't one of their pets gone on a rampage or something.

    I don't think she would win this lawsuit. The only one to blame is the bat. If somebody walked up and slapped me upside the head in a Walmart store, I wouldn't blame Walmart for it. They probably never knew a bat was even in there... All they'd have to do is show the receipts from the exterminator jobs to prove they weren't negligent...

    I do not know if they would have to have insurance for animal bites... but I bet that even if they did, this would be denied because they still aren't at fault here. It's almost one of those things that fall under "act of God" where they just refuse to pay. My car insurance wouldn't pay if I wasn't the one at fault - the other person's would have to. I've never had homeowner claims, so I don't know how those work, it may be different, but... Just because they have insurance doesn't mean they HAVE to cough up...

    Also, the article makes it sound like Walmart is refusing to pay, but I'd bet a third-party claims adjuster denied this and the walmart store itself (and its management) had no say at all. It does say management is very concerned about the girl, but I don't think Walmart itself had anything to do with denying this - JMO, from my own experiences... However, I have seen a store (not Walmart, but a store we covered at my employer) step in and offer services even AFTER a denial, particularly if it is privately owned and not a corporate location... but it is on their own wallets.

    I could be wrong. I was never an adjuster or handled the claims myself, but I listened to many nearby adjusters' telephone conversations over the years...
     
  11. bessie

    bessie Administrator Staff Member Administrator Moderator

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    A lawyer for the child might say that the fact they hired exterminators shows they had knowledge of the problem and failed to take sufficient action to eradicate it. I won't argue the legal liability, but I do think it would be in WM's best interest to accept responsibility and pay for treatment. JMHO.
     
  12. Lucid

    Lucid Reality continues to ruin my life.

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    I think so too. Or at least offer as a gesture of good faith.

    I suppose a lawyer could say that. I think my first thought would have been that the fact that they hired exterminators showed they provided general maintenance on the premisis to try to ward off things like this... my first thought would have been to keep bugs out or something, and if a bat was missed, then... I'd blame the exterminator for not doing a thorough job.

    In all likelihood, it probably hadn't been there long and had simply come in through an open door unnoticed... The garden section doors are always open at my hometown walmart. or it could have come through a truck bay or something..

    I find it odd that it was in a freezer aisle. When the birds come in, they're always in the garden section or the pet food section, hanging around the bags of gerbil/hamster or bird food...
     
  13. bessie

    bessie Administrator Staff Member Administrator Moderator

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    I generally avoid the big box stores, but I know I've seen birds flying around Home Depot. But you're probably right that they usually hang around the home and garden section. The animal control people think this bat was rabid because they don't normally bite. So being rabid might also explain other erratic behavior.
     
  14. ~greeneyedgirl~

    ~greeneyedgirl~ Member

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    Either way that is as scary as heck... I will definitely be keeping my eyes open while shopping from now on...

    I hope that Walmart does step up on it's own to help cover medical costs, that's a major fail at customer service if they don't.

    Just my thoughts
     
  15. Cypros

    Cypros New Member

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    This is ridiculous. Of course Wal-Mart should pay for the little girl's medical bills. They are not only morally responsible but legally responsible. As someone already posted, I would be responsible if this happened to a guest in my home. Wal-Mart is responsible even if they weren't negligent.
     
  16. Kimster

    Kimster Former Member

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    Lucid, isn't it true that if WalMart paid the bill out of the kindness of their hearts, then IF this ever occurred again they would be OBLIGATED to pay? The way I understand it is that it would set a precedence saying that WalMart must be at fault if they paid it.

    I know it sounds wacky, but our judicial system has started to lose its logic over the past 200 years...
     
  17. dizzychick

    dizzychick Active Member

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    that was my biggest fear as a child, rabies ! YIKES. As for the lawyer. I would bet a lawyer would say the fact they hired exterminators in the past means they knew or should have known they had this problem and her getting bit is proof they were negligent. What im not so sure about is what type of insurance they carry. i thought general liability policies were for people that got hurt on your property and you didnt have to proove negligence to claim on it. i could wrong but you know how lawyers are these days, if there is a will or a policy there is a way LOL
     
  18. Soulmagent

    Soulmagent Active Member

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    It doesnt have to be walmarts fault to have the insurance cover it, If someone falls off my stairs and breaks a leg it is an accident to which my policy covers such things.

    Insurance on a retail store is to protect agaist accident. Not all accidents are someones fault no matter how many times an insurance company screams about paying claims.
     
  19. EGirl

    EGirl #RockportStrong

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    If Walmart pays they are accepting responsibility. What if she had been bitten in the parking lot? Should WM still pay?

    If someone falls down your well maintained stairs then no, your insurance would not pay. There would have to be an issue or an attactive nuisance I would think in order for you insurance company to feel that you were responsible.
     
  20. Lucid

    Lucid Reality continues to ruin my life.

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    Insurance will not cover everything. 99% of claims I saw coming in were denied. They DO deny based on negligence. Somebody slipped and fell on a wet floor?? If there was a wet floor sign out, then this claim would be denied - it would not be the store's fault the person didn't pay attention (or deliberately walked through it looking for somebody to sue).

    Even if the store was at fault or something, they would offer to cover the "loss" - i.e. insurance copayments at the hospital or the entire bill if uninsured... they would not pay for "pain and suffering" or anything else. I've only seen - very rarely - where people have actually received additional money for a claim, and that was the truly horrific ones.

    I have also seen where a receipt of purchase was required prior to anything being done, just so the store can be sure that the person truly was there that day.

    I have a feeling massive store insurance policies vs. private homeowner ones are much different from each other, but I really don't know. Insurance will not cover it unless the store is at fault. Where I worked, we got well over 200 claims per day. And that is only for one business... and not even ALL of them nationwide were insured with us. No way is insurance going to sit there and pay every claim that comes in - they will ONLY pay if the store is at fault.

    If an accident is just an accident and nobody is at fault... then why would/should the insurance have to pay? Insurance premiums all over the world would be out of control...

    This is what most people think... and the reason why there are so many lawsuits - most of which are dismissed. Walmart is far from legally responsible... They did nothing to harm this girl. There was a wild animal where it shouldn't have been. I doubt Walmart invited it into the store, or fed it, or kept it there loose to harm people. Just because something happened in their store doesn't mean they are responsible for it. The bat has a mind of its own. They can't accept responsibility for every decision every creature (bat, human, anything) makes on their premisis.

    You all will have to forgive me if my arguements sound harsh. As I said above, I do think the store itself should offer something - even if its just a gift card or something. It would look better for them. And it is sad that this happened to a child, but things happen - this happened to me, but my parents never dreamed of going after the owner of the trash can when I was attacked by a cat. Things just happen... get over it...

    But over the years, I have seen so many ridiculous things. People are so eager to file a claim for the smallest thing because they're all looking for money. It probably makes me a little defensive of the corporations - you all have no idea what sorts of things they deal with all the time, everyone always wanting to sue and thinking they've been done wrong. When they are denied, they simply hire a lawyer. They don't realize the lawyer is denied just as easily as they were. It's so silly! Nothing ever comes of it, because the lawyers know that going to court won't gain anyone a dime, even if the store were demanded to pay, by the time all the costs and everything came out of it. "Pain and suffering" payment is rare.

    Kimster, I don't think they'd be setting themselves up to accept responsibility for everything if they offer something to this girl's family. I'm sure people might use this to try to get settlement money or something for future claims... but the store wouldn't be obligated to pay those people unless they wanted to.
     
  21. Noway

    Noway Montana

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    I didn't think bats liked daylight. Did this happen at night or during the day? Is it strange that there was a bat flying around in a well-lit (based on our WalMart) store?

    Bats don't usually bite, so they assumed it was rabid. They didn't catch the bat ... ? So someone else could be a potential victim?


    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...bat-shopped-mother-Walmart.html#ixzz1X0yzZGcN

    Not sure what she means by a "claims process" ...

    Personally, I don't think WalMart should pay for her medical bills. I'm not sure how WalMart could prevent a bat (or birds) from entering the store when the doors open and close with every customer ... ?

    eta
    Just wondering what stores at which WalMart has had a bat problem.
     

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