A compensation claim for injuries in a single vehicle accident has been settled for $26.55 million shortly before a court hearing was scheduled to begin.
The compensation claim for injuries in a single vehicle accident was brought by David Williams (32) – a landscape service engineer from Philadelphia in Pennsylvania. David had been driving his employer´s Ford F350 pickup truck through Clinton County in Pennsylvania, when the truck skidded off the road and David was thrown from the vehicle.
David suffered devastating injuries as a result of the accident and, despite multiple surgery and ongoing rehabilitation, is paralyzed from the waist down with only minimal use of his hands and arms. An investigation into the cause of the accident found that the two rear tires on the pickup truck were badly worn and nearly bald.
After seeking legal advice, David sued his employer for failing in his duty of care to provide him with a safe vehicle, and also made a compensation claim for injuries in a single vehicle accident against the two vehicle maintenance companies who had serviced the pickup truck in May and October 2011 – one of which had replaced the front tires on the vehicle, but not the back ones.
Attempts to settle the compensation claim for injuries in a single vehicle accident by mediation initially failed. The case was scheduled to be heard at the Court of Common Pleas in Philadelphia before Judge M. Teresa Sarmina. However, on the eve of the hearing it was announced that a settlement had been reached that each of the parties agreed upon.
According to the announcement, David´s employer and the employer´s parent company will pay $16.75 million compensation, one of the vehicle maintenance companies will pay $9.5 million compensation, and the second $300,000 compensation. The total settlement of $26.55 million is the highest compensation settlement recorded for a personal injury claim in Pennsylvania.
After the settlement of the compensation claim for injuries in a single vehicle accident had been announced, David´s attorney told the press: “The defendants were alleged to have knowingly and recklessly permitted a dangerous and potentially lethal bald tire on Mr. Williams’ 2005 Ford-350 truck. We would have demonstrated at trial how easy it would have been for the defendants to just do the right thing [and] remove the truck from service until the hazardous tires were replaced.”