In Florida, there are laws in place requiring certain entities to be equipped with automated external defibrillators (AED). Commonly called “shock devices,” they are instruments used to electronically “restart” a person’s heart once they have gone into cardiac arrest. Here in Florida, F.S. 1006.165 requires every public school district that is a member of the Florida High School Athletic Association to have an operational AED on school grounds, and schools must make sure all employees and volunteers who might reasonably be expected to use the device are appropriately trained to do so. F.S. 258.0165 encourages (but does not require) state parks to have a functioning one on site at all times. Other provisions of Florida’s Administrative Code require them in dentists’ offices, state-owned or leased facilities.
Failure to abide these provisions could be grounds upon which to pursue a negligence claim if a facility or premises required to have an AED does not, resulting in a wrongful death that might otherwise have been prevented.
In a recent case out of California (where there are similar provisions), an appellate court ruled a landlord who leases commercial space to the operator of a health facility (which are required by state law to carry AEDs) doesn’t owe a duty of care to ensure those devices are provided. Continue reading →