Mom sues after tent falls on her at track meet

Tanya Williams was watching son compete in Bear Creek Park in 2009.

A Surrey student’s mom who had a portable tent fall on her during a track meet two years ago has filed a civil suit against the Surrey Board of Education, the city, two teachers and two anonymous defendants.

Tanya Williams claims that on June 1, 2009, she was watching her son, a student at Rosemary Heights Elementary, at a district track meet in Bear Creek Park near 88 Avenue and 137 Street.

In her suit, filed last week, she says two teachers from the school, Cheryl McIlhargey and Marjie Bentley, had erected a tent over some raised, tiered bleachers. Williams was seated on the bottom row of the stands.

Suddenly and without warning, it’s alleged, she was struck on the head by the tent as it collapsed.

Williams says she sustained a traumatic brain injury, with cognitive dysfunction, anxiety, headaches, injuries to the cervical spine, low back and right hip.

The lawsuit claims she “has sustained and will continue to sustain pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, loss of amenities and loss of earnings” and continues to receive medical treatment for her injuries.

Williams is seeking damages including loss of past and future income, loss of earning capacity and past and future health care costs, as well as any legal costs.

Among many things, she says the defendants failed to ensure the bleachers were safe, didn’t supervise park users, did not take steps to ensure the erected tents were safe for use, failed to provide permanent safe covered areas and didn’t warn that erecting temporary structures could be unsafe.

The allegations have yet to be proven and the defendants have not yet filed a response.