A New Jersey man cannot collect damages for his injuries after he was burned while praying over a hot fajita skillet at Applebee’s, an appeals court ruled.
Hiram Jiminez claims the waitress failed to warn him that the sizzling platter was hot before he bowed his head over the skillet in prayer during a March 2010 visit to the chain restaurant, reported NJ.com.
Jiminez said he heard a loud sizzling noise as his face was bowed just inches from the freshly cooked meal and then was burned by grease popping in his eye and face.
The diner said he panicked and knocked the piping-hot steak fajita onto his lap, which caused more burns.
Jiminez did not suffer any scarring from his burns, but he sued the restaurant for damages, claiming the eatery negligently served him hot food.
A lower court dismissed the case, finding the danger posed by the fiery fajita should have been “open and obvious” before Jiminez bent his face toward the smoking cast-iron skillet.
The appeals court agreed with the lower court’s decision, saying “the danger posed by a plate of sizzling hot food was self-evident.”