$4.5 million settlement against the State of Connecticut

May 1, 1997

On July 10, 1989, a major storm hit the State of Connecticut causing millions of dollars in damage from Cornwall to Hamden. A church group of young girls had just set up camp at Black Rock State Park in anticipation of a week-long stay Several hours before the storm hit the State, the National Weather Bureau issued an urgent warning that the storm was coming. The state monitors these weather bulletins and sends notice to all state parks to warn the public. On this day, no one was manning the teletype machine, and the warning did not get passed on the Black Rock. When the storm hit, a 16 year old girl and her 12 year old sister were trapped in a nylon tent. A large tree fell on the tent, rendering the 16 year old a quadriplegic, and killing her sister. The plaintiffs produced experts in weather forecasting, camping and park management and convinced the state that this tragic event could have been predicted if the state had just followed its own policies. A settlement if $4,500,000 was reached prior to trial.