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Horry County Schools agrees to settle board member’s lawsuit for $260K

Board member Sherrie Todd fell and broke her arm walking into a board meeting in 2017
Sherrie Todd
Sherrie Todd(Source: HCS)
Published: Oct. 12, 2021 at 6:57 AM EDT
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Story courtesy of our news partners, MyHorryNews

Horry County Schools will pay $260,000 to settle a lawsuit with a school board member who sued the board after she fell walking into a 2017 meeting.

The school board on Monday unanimously voted to settle the case with District 2 board member Sherrie Todd, who represents parts of Myrtle Beach and Carolina Forest. Todd recused herself from the vote.

In her complaint, which was filed in 2019, Todd said she was trying to enter the school district’s headquarters on Four Mile Road for a Dec. 13, 2017, board meeting when she fell on the stairs leading up to the building’s entryway.

There was no railing on the stairway and that’s a violation of state building codes, according to the lawsuit. Prior to Todd’s fall, two other people had been seriously injured on the same staircase, which the lawsuit called an “unreasonably dangerous and hazardous condition.”

“The Board knew or should have known that the building, and specifically the lack of handrails on the stairs, did not comply with applicable South Carolina Building Codes and industry safety standards,” the lawsuit stated. “The Board knew or should have known that the lack of handrails on the steps was a safety hazard to employees, guests, and invitees on its property.”

Todd fractured her left humerus during the fall, and the severity of her injuries required three surgeries. The humerus is a bone in the arm that runs from the shoulder to the elbow.

“[The board] owed Ms. Todd a duty to warn, remedy and take reasonable safety measures to prevent latent hazardous or unsafe conditions from occurring on its property and to otherwise maintain its property in a reasonably safe condition for persons or guests that may visit the property,” the lawsuit stated.

In its initial response to the lawsuit, the board argued that Todd should have been more careful.

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