After breaking hip while skating, man sues Alpharetta skating center

Justin Phillips claims that he is an experienced roller skater, having skated for 35 years.

So when Phillips fell at “The Cooler” — a skate center in Alpharetta — after making what he calls an “ordinary left corner turn at an ordinary and prudent speed,” he wouldn’t blame his lack of skill or knowledge of skating.

On Oct. 1, 2016, while attending a birthday party at the skate center, Phillips fell and broke his left hip, left wrist and sprained his left ankle.

Phillips and his lawyers, Matthew Harman and Eric Frederickson of Harman Law LLC, filed a lawsuit on Monday, March 27, seeking compensation and relief from the Alpharetta Family Skate Center LLC and The Cooler for his injuries. Phillips claims that the skate center was negligent, the floor was more slippery than usual, and that there was not a spotter skating at the event, and a spotter would have recognized the skating surface was unsafe.

The lawsuit states that when Phillips began skating that day, he immediately noticed that the floor did not seem to be “an ordinary roller skating floor.” Phillips then proceeded cautiously in an attempt to “get a feel” for the skating surface.

Several minutes later, the lawsuit states, is when Phillips fell making that corner turn. Since then, Phillips has had surgery to repair the hip, but he claims he continues to have “reduced mobility” and will likely need a total hip replacement.

Phillips says that others fell at the birthday party too, but escaped with less severe injuries.

The lawsuit claims that “safety standards ordinarily accepted in the roller skating rink industry required The Cooler to have a spotter on the skating floor at all times” and there was not one there on Oct. 1.

See the full lawsuit below.

Phillips also claims in the lawsuit that The Cooler had “actual knowledge that its skating floor was unsafe” and he believes The Cooler “intentionally uses a skating surface that is more slippery than is ordinarily accepted” in an effort to attract inline hockey events.

When the AJC tried to reach John Bardis, the owner of The Cooler, a front desk person at the skate center advised that he was out of town.

Harmon and Frederickson could not immediately respond to a request for comment.

A trial date has not yet been set.

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