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Home >> Life
UPDATED: 09:24, December 29, 2005
Claim made over scalding on plane
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SHANGHAI: A government official from Nanjing whose crotch was scalded by a cup of hot water on a plane six years ago has launched her latest attempt to sue a US airline for US$1.

Yang Ping has launched a fresh lawsuit against Northwest Airlines before a court in Shanghai after withdrawing an earlier claim from the District Court of Hawaii.

She is still pursuing the case at a higher court in Hawaii.

Her claim in Shanghai has been launched to improve the airline's service, Yang said in court.

Shanghai Jing'an District People's Court heard the case for the first time yesterday. Yang wants US$1 compensation for mental distress and wants the company to publish apologies in some media including China Daily.

She told the court that the lawsuits, which have now lasted more than four years, could have been avoided if the airliner had showed more sincerity.

On August 4, 1999, Yang took a flight from capital city of Honolulu, Hawaii State, to Shanghai. On the airplane, a hostess overturned a cup of hot water on her private parts, according to her indictment. "It was unbelievable pain."

Yang said the captain gave her aspirin pills, which she crushed and applied onto the burned area under the cover of a blanket.

After the plane landed in Tokyo for transfer six hours later, the captain ordered two employees of the airliner stationed at Tokyo to accompany her to a clinic at the airport.

When they arrived at the clinic, she claimed the pair refused to pay the US$200 registration for her, so she left without treatment.

Yang was later diagnosed with severe scalds. Because of the delay, she took three months to recover from her injuries, she claimed.

Yang has repeatedly written to the company since then, asking for apologies and compensation. The company offered money but has not admitted any responsibility for the accident.

Yang sued the airliner in the District Court of Hawaii in August 2001. Eighteen months later, just when she thought she was going to win, the company withdrew all the offers for settlement because of a missionary, who claimed to sit near Yang on the plane.

According to the affidavit given by the Japanese missionary, Yang overturned the hot water herself when she was reaching for a beer on the tray. Yang claimed he lied.

Yang's first attorney left her after the affidavit and she had to withdraw the lawsuit. Two attorneys representing the company attended the new hearing in Shanghai yesterday.

They admitted the injury, but said the claim for compensation and apologies were baseless.

Source: China Daily

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