Aquarium Sued over Illness – $2.4 Million Demand

A lawsuit has been filed against the Tennessee Aquarium seeking $2.4 million by a boy’s parents who claim he contracted a bacterial infection in November known as “fish handler’s disease” after touching sharks and stingrays in an aquarium exhibit. The aquarium denies liability in the case.

The aquarium provided results of water tank tests taken in November when the boy visited which indicate no sign of the bacteria. Additional tests were also taken when the aquarium was notified of the boy’s illness, including testing of the stingray tank and aquarium staff members. None of the tests were positive according to the Tennessee aquarium.

The aquarium also provided information on other ways the bacteria can be contracted such as:

  • Infected soils
  • Cats, dogs, and other mammals with poultry and swine infections

The complaint filed with the Federal Court against Tennessee Aquarium is they knowingly permitted an open exhibit and allowed visitors to touch animals the aquarium staff supposedly knew were infected with the bacteria.

Property owners have a legal responsibility under Oregon law to keep their property in a safe condition free of unreasonable dangers. If hazards do exist, it is the property owner’s responsibility to warn visitors.

If you have suffered an injury due to a hazardous condition, a qualified Portland premises liability attorney will advise you of your legal rights regarding injuries and losses as a result and help you determine if you have a substantial case against the property owner where the injury/loss occurred.