Woman Files Federal Lawsuit Over Punkin Chunkin Accident - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Woman Files Federal Lawsuit Over Punkin Chunkin Accident

Posted: 08/17/2017 07:44:00 -04:00 Updated:

DOVER, Del. (AP/WBOC) - A woman who was critically injured when an air cannon exploded during last year's Punkin Chunkin event in Bridgeville, Del. has filed a federal lawsuit against event organizers and participants, state officials and Discovery Communications.

Suzanne Dakessian claims in Wednesday's 46-page lawsuit that she was left with severe and permanent injuries because of negligence and wrongful conduct by the defendants.

The defendants include Delaware's Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, which inspected the air cannon through its boiler safety program.

Dakessian was injured at last year's Punkin Chunkin when a trap door blew off a cannon called the "Pumpkin Reaper."

At the time, Dakessian was managing a camera crew for Sharp Entertainment, which was producing a television special for Discovery's Science Channel.

After the accident, the airing of the scheduled three-hour special was canceled. 

Following last year's Punkin Chunkin, organizers announced they had parted ways with the Science Channel, which was also Punkin Chunkin's main sponsor and contributed 25 percent of the donations needed to host the non-profit event. The organization says it's possible, they may not be able to fund the event after this year. This year's Punkin Chunkin event is set for Nov. 3-5 in Bridgeville.

Punkin Chunkin, which got its start in 1986, is hosted each November in Bridgeville.

Neither Punkin Chunkin's organizers nor DNREC had comment on the lawsuit.




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