First Posted: 7/31/2013
SCRANTON — Five days before the GoBowling.com 400 at Pocono International Raceway, a New Jersey nonprofit organization has filed a lawsuit on behalf of a quadriplegic, alleging the facilities are not equipped for wheelchair users.
Ronald Moore of New Jersey alleges he is forced to park his specially equipped van in grassy fields that are not level, and the grandstands and restrooms at the Long Pond facility lack handbars.
The suit was filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Scranton by The Independence Project, which represents the interests of disabled people.
Moore claims in the suit he has patronized the raceway numerous times and he intends to return to Pocono in Long Pond for this Sunday’s NASCAR race sponsored by GoBowling.com. NASCAR races at Pocono attract 95,000 to 115,000 people.
According to the suit:
• Pocono fails to provide accessible parking for disabled patrons.
• Moore’s path of travel from parking areas to the raceway was impeded by uneven and rocky ground and mud and slopes.
• Ramps to interior areas inside the racetrack lack handrails.
• Counters for food and retail vending areas — including picnic areas, tables and counters where food can be consumed — are inaccessible for wheelchair users.
• Accessible grandstand seating fails to provide proper sight lines for Moore.
• Restrooms are inaccessible to wheelchair users and lack directional signage.
• There’s a lack of grab bars inside restrooms, and toilet paper, soap and towel dispensers are out of reach.
Pocono Raceway spokesman Bob Pleban in an email declined comment.
Moore is seeking to compel Pocono to be compliant under the Americans with Disabilities Act and to cover attorney’s fees, costs and litigation expenses.