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new york remained frozen loud snoring change policies video footage

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#1 Hum

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 17:37

A Long Island woman collapsed and died in a Bay Shore health club’s bathroom because a male employee refused to enter the women’s locker room to try to save her, a lawsuit claims.

Emily Hamlin, 22, was in a ladies’-room stall at Planet Fitness on Route 27 during an early-morning workout when another gym member heard her drop to the floor, the legal papers say.

“I heard [a] flush, then a thud,” the member, Stephanie Dick, recalled in a sworn affidavit about the February 2012 incident. “I saw a woman’s arm drop to the floor, followed immediately by a loud snoring sound.”

Dick said she dashed to the front desk and pleaded with gym employee Sean Higgins to help.

“He said he didn’t know what to do and that he wasn’t allowed to go into the ladies’ bathroom,” Dick said in her sworn affidavit.

As Hamlin lay dying, Higgins remained frozen and was “scared and confused and didn’t know what to do,” Dick said.

“He said he was the only one working there and that a girl was expected to come in, but he didn’t know when she would be there.”

Dick’s statement is part of a wrongful-death suit Hamlin’s family is set to file in Suffolk County Supreme Court this week against the gym owners and Higgins.

“I want to know why no one helped her!” Hamlin’s mother, Jeanine, 52, said tearfully last week in her Central Islip home.

“He could have simply called 911! It’s baffling to me.”

Video footage from the gym obtained by Hamlin family lawyer Scott Charnas shows Hamlin entering the locker room at 5:08 a.m. Nine minutes later, Dick is seen at the front desk, imploring Higgins.

Dick said that, getting nowhere, she ran back to Hamlin and pounded on her locked stall door. Another gym member heard and ran out to the front desk.

“She was yelling at Sean to call 911,” Dick recalled.

Video shows the second member waving her arms and pointing to the bathroom at 5:21 a.m. Higgins, at one point, is seen idly looking at a computer screen.

Higgins picked up the phone to dial 911 4 1/2 minutes after learning of Hamlin’s collapse, the video’s time stamp shows.

As Dick talked to the 911 operator via cellphone — eight minutes after members alerted the front desk — another Planet Fitness employee, Kristin Smith, showed up in the locker room and “immediately” checked Hamlin’s pulse, finding it “weak,” the lawyer says.

Smith knows CPR but didn’t perform it, Charnas alleged.

Police arrived at 5:28 a.m. Hamlin was pronounced dead at 6:03 a.m.

The 24-hour gym, which boasts more than 500 members, is required by law to have an automated external defibrillator at all times and at least one person with certification to operate it.

Hamlin’s gym had neither, Charnas alleged.

A Planet Fitness lawyer sent a letter to Charnas saying the gym is not liable for Hamlin’s death.

“The safety of our members is extremely important,” spokeswoman McCall Gosselin said, noting the company can’t comment further until it has a copy of the suit.

Hamlin’s mom, meanwhile, said the gym must change its policies.

“No dollar amount will bring my daughter back,” she said.

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#2 ahhell

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 17:41

“No dollar amount will bring my daughter back,” she said. "....but it sure will help."

 

/fixed.



#3 notchinese

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 17:43

Idiot employee. But nobody else had a cell phone to call 911?



#4 OP Hum

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 18:02

No one is obligated to do CPR.

 

And if something goes wrong, you may get sued.



#5 DocM

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 18:04

Not sure this is going anywhere because there is no legal requirement to be a Good Samaritan; apply CPR or whatever. In some states Good Samaritan's also have very weak protections from lawsuits by the very people they're helping or their relatives even if they survive.

No win situation.

#6 MDboyz

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 18:14

Even if you know CPR, you should not perform CPR on anyone w/o the permit.  Otherwise, you will get sued by their family if something goes wrong.  It's sad, but you have to protect yourself first.



#7 theyarecomingforyou

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 18:26

No one is obligated to do CPR.

 

And if something goes wrong, you may get sued.

This is the problem. If you actually try to help and something goes wrong you can end up being sued, which is the height of lunacy. In fact the US actually has legal precedent established to not provide assistance. It seems antithetical for a society to encourage people not to care about their fellow citizens and to have laws that penalise those that do.

 

The real issue here is the accusation that the gym didn't have the legally required equipment or staff trained in how to use it. If that's the case then the gym is clearly at fault. Further, if the staff member had CPR training then he should have provided assistance. In some countries you can be prosecuted for not providing assistance.



#8 thomastmc

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 18:50

"But she's drowning!". "I'm sorry mam. No one, even lifeguards, are allowed to swim after 10 PM. If this had only happened one minute ago, maybe I could've done something".



#9 Growled

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 19:51

The real issue here is the accusation that the gym didn't have the legally required equipment or staff trained in how to use it. If that's the case then the gym is clearly at fault. Further, if the staff member had CPR training then he should have provided assistance. In some countries you can be prosecuted for not providing assistance.

I agree and it is an issue and it is probably why the family will win the lawsuit.



#10 moloko

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 20:09

No one is obligated to do CPR.

 

And if something goes wrong, you may get sued.

This is crazy isn't it.  Best to not do it and wait for the professionals. 

 

“No dollar amount will bring my daughter back,” she said. "....but it sure will help."

 

/fixed.

HAHA

 

Even if you know CPR, you should not perform CPR on anyone w/o the permit.  Otherwise, you will get sued by their family if something goes wrong.  It's sad, but you have to protect yourself first.

 

This is true for the individual, but they are suing the gym.  I think since she was still alive that they are not liable but it up to the courts. 

I agree and it is an issue and it is probably why the family will win the lawsuit.

Sad but true.



#11 Davo

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 21:22

Why didn't ANYONE call 911?



#12 cybertimber2008

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 21:32

No one is obligated to do CPR.

 

And if something goes wrong, you may get sued.

Good samaritan laws protect those who do act.



#13 Astra.Xtreme

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 21:52

Why didn't ANYONE call 911?

 

RTFA...



#14 OP Hum

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 22:10

Why didn't ANYONE call 911?

Higgins did -- after 4.5 minutes.

 

I think most thought that since this was a young woman that collapsed, that it was not that serious.

 

They didn't realize.



#15 Growled

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 23:01

Higgins did -- after 4.5 minutes.

 

I think most thought that since this was a young woman that collapsed, that it was not that serious.

 

They didn't realize.

I wouldn't be thinking it was anything serious either, since she was young. But I would have rushed in there to see.





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