MYNORTHWEST NEWS

$13M to be owed to woman who lost athletic career falling on Seattle sidewalk

Jun 24, 2024, 9:41 AM

seattle sidewalk...

(Photo courtesy of KIRO 7)

(Photo courtesy of KIRO 7)

$13.1 million will be awarded to an ultramarathon athlete who suffered an injury after falling on a Seattle sidewalk in 2021, a jury ruled.

A King County jury found that the City of Seattle and the owners of an apartment building shared responsibility for the accident, according to The Seattle Times. The amount to be received by the athlete, Lesley Mettler Auld, was determined by both the extent of the injuries and what the accident will mean for her life going forward.

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Mettler Auld, 53, damaged her quadriceps in the accident that required multiple surgeries. A professional fitness coach who ran in dozens of marathons and ultramarathons, her attorneys claimed she continues to struggle to walk, and that she will never be able to run again.

“Today, fully 34 months since the fall, I still have to pull myself up the stairs in my house on my hands and knees,” she said.

Mettler Auld fell on a “notoriously dangerous” stretch of sidewalk on Dravus Street in the Queen Anne neighborhood, according to the complaint obtained by The Seattle Times. The sidewalk is “perennially covered in water and algae.” Many other Queen Anne residents have complained or testified in court that they had also fallen at this location.

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The largest public settlement by the city was more than $65 million in 2019, owed to the family of a young lawyer who was hit in her car by a Seattle Fire Department (SFD) ambulance.

Frank Sumrall is a content editor at MyNorthwest. You can read his stories here and you can email him here.

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