Trucking Company Settles Accident With Jogger For $5.95M
A trucking company recently settled a lawsuit filed by a jogger who was hit while having a jog. The woman allegedly became caught on the truck and was dragged 60 feet, tearing flesh and breaking bone, according to the suit. One of the truck’s wheels eventually came to rest on her body. The accident changed her life forever.
She was forced into a medically-induced coma, has sustained permanent injuries, and can no longer work as a teacher. She says she suffers constant pain and can no longer jog. However, the judgment was entered against a company with a contract with the Florida government. That means that she will have to petition the legislature to receive the full award.
To be sure, this is precisely the type of incident that the legislature will sign off on when one of their employees is responsible for an accident. The woman will receive the money, it will just take a little longer. In the meantime, she will be entitled to recover the $200,000 afforded by statute. The remainder she will have to wait for once it’s signed by the legislature and the governor.
For the time being, the odds of recovering her settlement award are good.
The details of the accident are gruesome. The woman was jogging when a county employee in a pickup truck made an illegal U-turn and struck the woman. She became caught on the truck and was dragged 65 feet as her skin was being torn from her body and her bones were being crushed. The extent of her injuries were incredible. The fact that she survived at all is a miracle. Her liver was split in half, her kidneys were bruised, and she never lost consciousness throughout the entire ordeal. She now lives in chronic pain and has PTSD from the accident. Her pelvis had to be surgically restored.
The county commission has agreed to pay the settlement and supports the plaintiff in her recovery. This does happen. While suing the government is often a real pain, there are occasions when settlements can be reached quickly and with smiles and handshakes from all sides after a victim of a tragic accident goes home with the support she needs for the rest of her life.
The driver was cited for a moving violation and his license was suspended for three months. Ultimately, he retired from the county in 2020 and is no longer driving. He was not charged with a crime for the incident.
In cases like this, an employer incurs liability on behalf of their employee. That’s true regardless of whether or not it’s a private company or the government. Since the driver was employed by the county, and not a private utility company, the lawsuit followed the rules of sovereign immunity and the plaintiff was forced to petition the legislature for more than $200,000.
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