Couple sues Keene after fall at town dump

A Keene couple says the city was negligent when Carolyn Campbell fell between two dumpsters, and her husband, Richard Campbell, couldn't find a city employee for help.

KEENE — City couple Carolyn and Richard Campbell want a jury trial after they say Keene’s negligence resulted in Carolyn Campbell’s fall and severe injuries at the city transfer station.

The couple’s lawsuit, recently filed in the Cheshire Superior Court, states that the city did not have adequate protection for people around the dumpsters at the Summit Road transfer station. There were also no staff present to help the couple at the facility.

In June of 2016, Carolyn and Richard Campbell were at the transfer station to get rid of flooring materials. The couple was, at the time, in the midst of a home improvement project, according to the lawsuit.

They brought their pickup truck to the area where two dumpsters are set out for people to use. The dumpsters are placed on concrete pads about seven to eight feet below the ground level, and cars can pull up, according to the lawsuit.

According to the suit, as the pair tossed the flooring debris from the back of their truck into the dumpster, Carolyn Campbell tripped over the concrete wheel stop, which is designed to keep cars from driving off the ledge. There is no structure to keep people from falling over, the lawsuit states.

Carolyn Campbell fell between the two dumpsters, breaking her skull, injuring her knee and shoulder, and sustaining serious cuts and abrasions, according to the lawsuit.

As his wife lay unconscious on the concrete pad, Richard Campbell tried unsuccessfully to find an employee to help and ended up driving his pickup truck around the facility to get to the concrete pad, carrying his wife into the truck and bringing her to the hospital himself, the lawsuit says.

The Campbells want a trial and are seeking damages for the physical and emotional injuries suffered. The lawsuit does not give a dollar amount the couple is seeking.