A Belleville man is suing the maker and seller of a hunting tree stand after he allegedly fell while using it.

Michael Burns and his wife, Diane, filed a lawsuit March 24 in St. Clair County Circuit Court against Big Dog Treestand Inc. and Swansea Rural King Inc.

According to the complaint, Diane Burns bought a ladder stand from a Rural King store in Swansea in October 2010. Michael Burns says he was hunting later that month with the Big Dog-built stand supported by a ratchet strap assembly.

While he was in the ladder stand, Michael says, the ratchet strap assembly failed, causing the strap to detach and allow him to fall to the ground.

The Burnses accuse Big Dog Treestand and Rural King of negligence for making and selling a defective ladder stand. They are asking for more than $300,000 in damages for medical expenses, loss of income and consortium.

Attorney Michael J. Garavalia of Belleville is representing the Burnses.

St. Clair County Circuit Court Case No. 11-L-150.

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