Helping a Firefighter’s Family Find Justice

Arnold & Itkin is representing a family forever changed because a property owner failed to properly maintain its landscaping, leading to a firefighter’s death.

The incident took place on June 17, 2022, as Casey Skudin, a 16-year veteran FDNY firefighter, was driving his wife and children near the entrance of the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina. As they entered the property, a large tree suddenly fell across the road and landed on the family’s vehicle, crushing Casey and injuring his two children.

Property owners, such as those who operate the Biltmore, have an obligation to maintain trees and landscaping so they do not pose unreasonably dangerous conditions that could harm visitors and guests. In this case, we will work to prove that the defendants knowingly kept a rotted tree on the property near a road where it could cause considerable harm if it fell. Instead of removing the tree, the defendants attempted to use a steel cable for support. This decision led to a horrific event that left a family without a father and husband.

“The Skudin family has forever been changed because of the defendants' reckless decisions to knowingly keep dangerous trees on its properties and subject guests to unreasonable risks of harm,” said our attorneys in a statement. “We look forward to holding the defendants responsible for their unacceptable decisions.”

Our wrongful death attorneys are working to hold all at-fault parties responsible for this preventable tragedy. We filed this lawsuit in Buncombe County, North Carolina, against the Biltmore Company, the Biltmore Estate Wine Company, LLC, and the Village Hotel on Biltmore Estate, LLC.

News coverage on this incident and the lawsuit:

Premises Liability,
Wrongful Death
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