Family of Massachusetts Woman Killed by Manhole Cover Files Lawsuit

February 21, 2019

The family of a Massachusetts woman killed on her way to work when a 200-pound manhole cover flew up and crashed through her vehicle’s windshield has sued the state Transportation Department and two contractors.

The wrongful death suit filed by Caitlin Clavette’s family this week alleges the manhole cover did not fit the frame on which it was seated and had “severely deteriorated.” The suit seeks unspecified damages.

Clavette, a 35-year-old elementary school art teacher, was driving on Interstate 93 in Boston on Feb. 12, 2016, when another vehicle dislodged the cast iron manhole cover and sent it flying.

The state Transportation Department in a statement said Clavette’s death was a tragedy but it could not comment on pending litigation. One contractor declined comment while the other couldn’t be reached.

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