Solana Beach resident files lawsuit after falling in pothole near Saddle Bar

A Solana Beach resident filed a lawsuit against the city of Solana Beach, Saddle Bar and San Diego Gas & Electric after she allegedly fell and suffered multiple injuries while leaving the venue earlier this year.

The plaintiff, Mary MacDonald, left Saddle Bar at 123 Plaza St. in Solana Beach and was walking to her vehicle last May, according to a complaint filed Sept. 7 in San Diego County Superior Court. She alleges that she lost her balance and fell on the asphalt after stepping on a flat, unanchored sheet that was covering a pothole on the sidewalk.

The injuries she suffered, according to the complaint, include post-concussion disorder, acute displaced fracture of the left sixth and seventh posterior ribs, right ankle sprain, knee pain, post-traumatic intractable migraine headaches, subjective memory dysfunction, concentration difficulties, imbalance due to vestibular dysfunction associated with head and neck injury, insomnia and sleep disturbances following the incident, pain in the chest due to rib fracture, scalp abrasion.

MacDonald’s complaint alleges that the city of Solana Beach “breached its duty to use ordinary and reasonable care in the maintenance, lack of repair, and safety precautions around the sidewalk and pothole in question.” She is seeking damages, including $10 million to cover medical costs, according to the complaint.

“All of this continues to cause Plaintiff Mary Macdonald great mental, physical, and nervous pain and suffering,” the complaint says.

MacDonald’s attorney, Kane Handel, said in an interview that cities should do more to fix potholes and other issues that can cause injury.

“It really aggravates me, whether it’s the city of Solana Beach or the city of San Diego, they don’t seem to see the urgency of people getting hurt and falling on their head, having head injuries, breaking bones,” Handel said. “It ruins people’s lives.”

In a cross-complaint filed by the city of Solana Beach on Oct. 24, the city asked for indemnity, arguing in part that SDG&E had a responsibility to maintain that stretch of sidewalk.

“The City denies the allegations contained in plaintiff’s Complaint and specifically denies liability in any manner whatsoever for damages claimed by plaintiff of any other party,” the city’s cross complaint says.

Solana Beach City Manager Greg Wade declined further comment.

SDG&E and Saddle Bar did not respond to requests for comment.

A case management conference is scheduled in March.