A 61-year-old man driving home from work on Interstate 95 South was struck from behind by two separate cars traveling above the speed limit. As a result of the two impacts, the plaintiff’s spine was fractured at C1-C2, necessitating surgery to implant a rod, and a laminectomy at C3-C6 to remove bone impinging on the spinal cord. After extensive rehabilitation, the plaintiff was left with permanent nerve damage in his fingertips and rendered disabled.
The driver of the car involved in the second impact contended that he was not liable for striking the plaintiff’s vehicle after the first impact due to the sudden emergency doctrine. The defendant also claimed that he could not see the plaintiff’s vehicle due to the lack of light on the highway and because the plaintiff’s rear lights had been disabled due to the first impact.
Plaintiff’s crash reconstruction expert was able to demonstrate that at least one of the plaintiff’s rear brake lights was lit at the time of the second impact and further that the driver of the second vehicle was traveling at least 10 mph over the speed limit at the moment of impact. In addition to a crash reconstructionist, the plaintiff also employed a lifecare planner, a vocational rehabilitation expert, and an economist.
The parties were able to reach a settlement for $1,750,000 after mediating the case with Judge Peter Lauriat of JAMS, Inc.
If you or a loved one has been involved in an auto accident, it is vital that you contact one of the experienced car accident attorneys at Mitcheson & Lee. Contact us today for your free consultation!