Pedestrian Seriously Injured by Truck Driver

Synopsis

Plaintiffs' Allegations

Plaintiff Jane Doe, 59, was on her way home from her customary walk in her neighborhood with her puppy, who was attached to a leash, when they approached a major intersection. A large pickup truck was waiting for a signal on the opposite side of the road to turn left. She pushed the button for the pedestrian signal and waited for the walk signal to appear before she and her puppy began to cross the road in the crosswalk. At the same time, the green light signal appeared for the truck. After Jane Doe and her puppy were nearly halfway across the road, the pickup truck, which was completing its left turn, hit her. Her body eventually came to rest several feet outside of the crosswalk near the median and on top of her puppy who died on the scene.

Jane Doe and her husband, John Doe, sued the driver of the truck, John Roe, and ABC Corporation. It was undisputed that at the time of the incident that John Roe was an employee of ABC Corporation and was acting within the course and scope of his employment with ABC Corporation. Plaintiffs claimed that John Roe should have been able to avoid the collision, but he did not because he was driving while sleep deprived and distracted by work and phone calls.

The defendants claimed that the puppy was not on a leash and that Jane Doe had ran into the street outside of the crosswalk chasing her puppy when John Roe hit her.

Injuries

As a result of the collision, Jane Doe suffered several fractures to her right tibial plateau, a L1 burst compression fracture, a flail chest, and four fractured ribs. She underwent several surgeries, including: a surgery to repair her shattered vertebra; a surgery to repair her rib cage which had become completely displaced by the fractures; a surgery to repair her tibia plateau fractures; and a surgery to lengthen the Achilles tendon in both ankles. Following additional treatment and physical therapy, Jane Doe's condition has significantly improved, but she continues to endure substantial impairments, limitations, and chronic pain in her back, neck, legs, and ankles. She experiences a tingling sensation in three toes of her right foot and numbness in two toes of her left foot. She requires a cane when she walks to support herself. Additionally, Jane Doe suffers from regular headaches that cause her to experience nausea and dizziness. Her activities have also been limited by bladder and bowel urgency as well as incontinence that have resulted from the incident.

At the time of the incident, Jane Doe had been working as a surgical nurse for 35 years. Due to her injuries and functional limitations, plaintiffs' vocational consultant opined that Jane Doe would not be able return to any form of employment.

Damages

Jane Doe's damages included past medical expenses of $604,000, a life care plan of $525,923 and past and future lost earnings of $2,032,429 for a total of $3,162,352 in economic damages. Plaintiffs also sought non-economic damages and damages for loss of consortium.

Settlement

The plaintiffs settled with the defendants before trial for a total of $4,500,000.