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Two dozen injured when walking over hot coals during seminar

Many people in Cincinnati have seen television shows of spiritual people walking across hot coals without getting burned, but many of them wouldn't consider doing it themselves. That doesn't mean that it isn't still happening, however, and almost 24 people were injured when they were prompted to walk across an 8-foot bed of hot coals. Some people reported minor burns and pain, but a large number of people had second- or third-degree burns, both of which can have serious medical implications.

Like in any public place, Ohio residents should feel safe and expect to be protected from serious risks. Whether it is a local store or a large convention center and company of motivational speakers, businesses are expected to prevent harm to their patrons and customers. When these businesses fail to do so or fail to warn individuals of the dangers present in a business, they can often be held liable with a premises liability lawsuit. It is still unclear if any of the individuals who were injured in this coal-walking seminar will be filing lawsuits against the motivational speakers who led the walk, however.

One of the members of the motivational speakers' group has even admitted that there are risks associated with a fire walk and, while the speaker who leads the walk does spend some time preparing people for the walk, it is unknown if the risks of walking over goals that can get as hot as 2,000 degrees are fully explained to participants.

Many of the individuals who were lucky enough not to get burned have said that it is not the speaker's fault that people were injured. Many of them said that if the people who were injured had been in the proper frame of mind, they would not have been burned.

Source: New York Times, "A Self-Improvement Quest That Led to Burned Feet," Carol Pogash, July 22, 2012

In order to find out more about our work with people who have been injured in public places, please visit our premises liability page.

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