Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Second Department, New York.
Jack HURLEY, etc., et al., appellants, v. BREWSTER CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT, respondent.
Decided: July 18, 2018
ALAN D. SCHEINKMAN, P.J., JEFFREY A. COHEN, COLLEEN D. DUFFY, FRANCESCA E. CONNOLLY, JJ.
Feinstein & Naishtut, LLP, Rye Brook, N.Y. (Steven D. Feinstein and Mitchell L. Perry of counsel), for appellants. Henderson & Brennan, White Plains, N.Y. (Lauren J. Demase of counsel), for respondent.
DECISION & ORDER
In an action to recover damages for personal injuries, etc., the plaintiffs appeal from an order of the Supreme Court, Putnam County (Robert DiBella, J.), dated June 28, 2016. The order granted the defendant's motion for summary judgment dismissing the complaint.
ORDERED that the order is affirmed, with costs.
The infant plaintiff and his parents commenced this action against the defendant, Brewster Central School District, to recover damages for personal injuries, alleging negligent supervision. At his hearing pursuant to General Municipal Law § 50–h and his deposition, the infant plaintiff testified that he became nauseous during his high school health class while watching a graphic documentary about the dangers of drunk driving. The infant plaintiff told his teacher that he did not feel well and obtained her permission to use the restroom. He never informed his teacher that he felt nauseous or dizzy. He left the classroom and walked about 30 feet before he suddenly fainted in the hallway. The Supreme Court granted the defendant's motion for summary judgment dismissing the complaint. The plaintiffs appeal.
“Schools are under a duty to adequately supervise the students in their charge and they will be held liable for foreseeable injuries proximately related to the absence of adequate supervision” (Mirand v. City of New York, 84 N.Y.2d 44, 49, 614 N.Y.S.2d 372, 637 N.E.2d 263; see Santos v. City of New York, 138 A.D.3d 968, 969, 30 N.Y.S.3d 258). However, a school is not an insurer of its students' safety, and will be held liable only for foreseeable injuries proximately related to the absence of adequate supervision (see Santos v. City of New York, 138 A.D.3d at 969, 30 N.Y.S.3d 258; Nash v. Port Wash. Union Free School Dist., 83 A.D.3d 136, 146, 922 N.Y.S.2d 408). “Where an accident occurs in so short a span of time that even the most intense supervision could not have prevented it, any lack of supervision is not the proximate cause of the injury” (Convey v. City of Rye School Dist., 271 A.D.2d 154, 160, 710 N.Y.S.2d 641; see Santos v. City of New York, 138 A.D.3d at 969, 30 N.Y.S.3d 258; Gomez v. Our Lady of Fatima Church, 117 A.D.3d 987, 986 N.Y.S.2d 550).
Here, the defendant met its prima facie burden for summary judgment by establishing that the accident occurred in so short a span of time that even the most intense supervision would not have prevented it (see Diaz v. City of Yonkers, 103 A.D.3d 682, 959 N.Y.S.2d 720; Atehortua v. Lewin, 90 A.D.3d 794, 795–796, 935 N.Y.S.2d 102). In opposition, the plaintiffs failed to raise a triable issue of fact. Accordingly, we agree with the Supreme Court's determination to grant the defendant's motion for summary judgment dismissing the complaint.
SCHEINKMAN, P.J., COHEN, DUFFY and CONNOLLY, JJ., concur.
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