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Woman Sues Continental Airlines Over Spilled Coffee

May 30, 2013

A woman in Texas has filed a lawsuit against the former Continental Airlines over a 2011 incident in which a flight attendant spilled a cup of coffee on her lap.

The suit was filed by Lourdes Cervantes against United Continental Holdings Inc. of Chicago, the company that purchased Continental Airlines, alleging that a flight attendant spilled hot coffee on her during a Continental flight from Madrid, Spain, to Newark, New Jersey in August 2011.

Cervantes alleges that the cup of coffee slid off the tray table and spilled onto her lap when the person in the seat in front of her reclined the seat as the flight attendant was serving the hot beverage.

According to court documents, Cervantes sustained second-degree burns requiring medical treatment and has permanent scarring on the affected areas of her body.

The suit is seeking $170,550, the maximum compensation that can be sought under the 1999 Montreal Convention, which allows for compensation to victims of injuries sustained on international flights.

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