Trucking Company Settles Wrongful Death Collision Case for $11.6 Million

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The widow of a 64-year-old man who died in a truck collision has reached a confidential settlement of $11.6 million in a wrongful death suit. The collision occurred on a Missouri interstate highway near a construction zone where traffic had slowed due to congestion, said Jason P. Roth of Copley Roth & Wilson in Overland Park, Kansas. The truck driver collided with the rear of the decedent’s vehicle at highway speed, with no evidence of braking or any evasive maneuver, the plaintiff alleged.

Damage to victim’s car caused by rear-end collision with truck.

Extensive discovery revealed the truck driver was recently promoted to a salaried office position where he was not regularly driving a truck, said Roth, who is a member of The National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Lawyers. Under federal regulations, a driver of a truck cannot drive after working in any capacity for 70 hours in a period of eight consecutive days without 34 hours off duty. The plaintiff alleged that at the time of the collision the driver had been on duty for more than 70 hours.

Short driver weighed 400 pounds

The plaintiff also raised concerns regarding the truck driver’s physical qualifications to drive a truck. The truck driver was 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighed more than 400 pounds, and discovery in the case revealed the driver had been found at risk for sleep apnea but the company failed to follow up on the numerous warning signs regarding the driver’s physical qualifications, Roth said.  Roth said that with the history of excessive daytime sleepiness, likelihood of untreated sleep apnea, and driving a truck in excess of his allowable hours of service, the truck driver likely fell asleep at the wheel.

The attorneys took the depositions of more than 15 of defendant trucking company’s employees, including the company’s Medical Director, to establish that untreated sleep apnea is a concern for the trucking industry and the safety of the motoring public.

Shortly before the scheduled depositions of the trucking company’s experts, the company agreed to settle for $11.6 million. The trucking company also indicated it would discontinue its practice of using salaried office workers to intermittently drive trucks and re-evaluate its program regarding driver health and physical qualifications, Roth said.


Injustice: Ford Motor Excused From Paying $3 Million Due to “Jury Tampering”

Jury Tampering The Thirteenth District Court of Appeals ruled that Ford Motor Co. does not have to pay the $3 million settlement for a rollover car crash more than 10 years ago. One decade after the lead juror passed a note to the judge that prompted Ford’s settlement, the Texas appeals court determined enough circumstantial evidence existed to conclude jury tampering may have induced Ford’s settlement.

Millions in Damages

Plaintiffs Ezequiel Castillo and Maria De Los Angeles Castillo sued Ford for $35 million after they were injured in the rollover of a Ford Explorer.  During the 2004 trial of their case in the Cameron County 404th Judicial District Court, jury forewoman Cynthia Cruz Cortez sent a note to the judge asking, “What is the maximum amount that can be awarded?”

This current decision relates to the settlement reached during a prior case, prompted by Cruz’s note. Ford claimed the settlement is invalid and refused to pay citing indications Cruz may have colluded with the plaintiffs’ attorney to pressure the company into agreeing to a higher settlement amount.

The Texas Supreme Court initially determined there was no reason to reverse the jury’s finding. “Examining the entire record, considering both the evidence in favor of, and contrary to each element of fraudulent inducement, we cannot conclude that the weight of the evidence is so contrary to the jury’s findings as to make those findings clearly wrong and unjust,” the Court wrote at the time.

The Supreme Court further determined the only evidence supporting the jury’s finding was Castillo’s attorney’s statement the night before the verdict, in which he said his demand would increase to $3 million in the event of a jury note about damages. The Court found this circumstantial evidence was “too meager” to support the verdict because the statement was “consistent with the custom of plaintiffs’ attorneys”.

However, the determination changed last year when the Court found the trial evidence did not establish that the comments were customary of plaintiffs’ attorneys.

In total, this case has been appealed, reversed, appealed again, and has come before the Texas Supreme Court three times over the course of the last ten years.

Induced to Settle

A note asking about maximum damages may only imply that the jury intends to award that amount; but here, the jury was not actually deliberating damages when Cortez sent the note to the judge. This was evidence of fraudulent inducement because the note implied material statements that were false, according to the high court.

Ford needed to show the note was sent with the knowledge that its implications were false, and it claimed that plaintiffs’ attorney Mark Cantu directed the jury forewomman to send it. “There is enough circumstantial evidence to establish a pattern — a pattern that reasonably implicates Cantu in Cortez’s fraudulent scheme to send the note,” the Court said.

“On the brink of a Ford victory,” the state high court said, “Cortez precipitated a day-long recess because of some serious illness or injury to one of her two children. At the trial of this case, however, Cortez could not recall the illness or injury that kept her at the hospital all night.” That same day, Cantu reduced his settlement demands from $15 million to less than $2 million. After Cortez sent the note, he remained agreeable to a settlement of less than 10 percent of the original $35 million claim.

The jury could reasonably infer, the Court concluded, that Cortez initiated the recess to give Cantu more negotiating time with Ford – before the jury could reach a verdict against the plaintiffs.

The case is Ezequiel Castillo et al. v. Ford Motor Co., Case No. 13-10-00232-CV, in the Thirteenth District Court of Appeals.

Florida Couple Recovers $14.5 in Bad Faith Case Against Geico


Geico rejected the claim and refused to pay for the damages, which led to the Zucker lawsuit.

A jury in Miami awarded a $14.5 million to husband and wife in a Miami-Dade Circuit Court trial against Geico General Insurance Co. and an uninsured driver who was deemed negligent in a severe 2004 automobile accident.

In the Nov. 2 verdict, a jury awarded former chiropractor David Zucker and his wife Carrie a total of nearly $14.5 million for past and future lost earnings, medical expenses and pain and suffering damages. David Zucker suffered permanent spinal injuries and urologic injuries as a result of the accident. The total damages also included $2.5 million awarded to Carrie Zucker for loss of consortium, or her suffering as a result of her husband’s injuries.

Attorney Crane Johnstone of Schlesinger Law Offices P.A. presented the case on behalf of the family. He was assisted by senior trial attorney Charles Patrick. Judge John Schlesinger, a former federal prosecutor who is not related to anyone in the law firm, presided over the trial.

Three part collision

In December 2004 near the Golden Glades Interchange, Miguel Gonzalez collided with Juan Chirino, who was driving an 18-wheel oil tanker. The impact sent Gonzalez careening across three lanes of northbound traffic before he crashed head on into Zucker’s car. Carrie Zucker, who was a passenger in the car with her husband, was pregnant at the time.

Gonzalez was uninsured, while Chirino was underinsured. State law requires auto insurance carriers like Geico to offer uninsured/underinsured motorist benefits to policyholders. David and Carrie Zucker’s policy included such benefits. Therefore, Geico stood in the shoes of Gonzalez and Chirino.

Geico rejected the claim and refused to pay for the damages, which led to the Zucker lawsuit. Chirino testified at trial as a witness but was not a defendant in the case.

The jury concluded Gonzalez was 100 percent responsible for the total damages. That ruling put Geico on the hook for the entire award.

“It was a privilege to appear before Judge Schlesinger and our jury on behalf of the Zucker family, who waited 11 years for their day in court,” Johnstone said.

Based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Schlesinger Law Offices P.A. is a personal injury law firm focused on holding big corporations and major manufacturers accountable for the harm they cause and the damage suffered by the general public through acts of negligence and misconduct. The firm is currently working on cases involving Big Tobacco, Accutane medication, defective medical devices, and defective drug products. For more information log on to


Connecticut Recognizes Parental Consortium Claims

parentalconsortiumThe Connecticut Supreme Court agreed that children of an injured parent should be allowed to bring a claim for loss of parental consortium. Connecticut was one in five states that previously declined to recognize children’s claims.

Jose Campos was killed after a car struck him while he was riding his bicycle. The vehicle was operated by the defendant, Robert Coleman and owned by his employer LQ Management. The family was awarded $2.9 million for the wrongful death claim and $1 million for spousal loss of consortium.

The Campos family’s primary argument was to overrule Mendillo v. Board of Education, which declined to recognize a parental consortium claim. 717 A.2d 1177 (1998).   In Mendillo, the court declined to allow the claim for the following reasons:

  • The additional economic affects on the public;
  • The uncertainty of whether recognition would produce social benefits;
  • The risk of double recovery; and
  • The weight of judicial authority.


The state supreme court believed, however, that a failure to recognize this type of claim would be “inconsistent with the fundamental policy purposes of the tort compensation system. . .”

See Also: Business Entity is Now a “Person” under Debt Collection Law

Parent-Child Relationships

The state supreme court favored recognition of the claims because the factors surrounding the claim outweighed those disfavoring the claim. Specifically, the unique emotional attachment in a parent-child relationship was distinguishable from other familial relationships. While the parent is no longer with the child, it is necessary for the child to have continued development and for innocent parties to be compensated.

The court acknowledged that its reasons in Mendillo were overstated. Previously, the court believed that recognizing the parental consortium claim would open the door to an unlimited class of plaintiffs who could “present equally strong claims of loss of consortium.“

The court further explained that minor children are the only ones who have a legal entitlement to the claims because adult children are presumed independent of their parent’s care. Minor children suffer the most by an injury to the parent.

Additionally, there is no distinction between the loss suffered by natural children versus an adopted or stepchildren, because the deprivation is the same.

Undue Societal Impact & Large Families

The parent-child relationship is distinguishable from other familial relationships. The impact of the injury to the parent is foreseeable and the only workable way to compensate for the loss is a monetary award.

The court stated that if a monetary award was not available the effects of the loss may have a broader societal impact such as the child’s future development as a contributing member of society.

Mendillo was concerned with the number of potential claims if there are multiple children. With larger families there will be additional claims made, however the number of potential claims is not a sufficient reason to deny the action, the court stated. The larger the family the greater the scope of injury.

Double Recovery

If the claim for parent consortium were recognized, previous courts believed the surviving spouse and the children would both recover by filing separate claims. However, the court quickly dispensed with the issue by suggesting the parent’s claim and the child’s claim would be joined to the same proceeding and specific jury instructions should be provided on damages.

The court concluded its opinion by providing some guidelines for parental consortium claims in the state:

  • The parental consortium claims must be joined with parent’s negligence claim whenever possible;
  • Jury must be instructed that only the child raising the claim can recover the pecuniary value of the parent’s services;
  • The consortium claim will be barred when surviving parent’s claim has been terminated by settlement or by adverse judgment on the merits
  • The claim may be raised only by a person who was a minor on the date of the parent’s injury and damages are limited to the period between the injury and date the child reaches the age of majority.


This case is Gregoria Campos, Administratix (Estate of Jose Mauricio Campos), Et Al v. Robert E. Coleman Et Al., Case No. SC 19195, Supreme Court of Connecticut.

Second Circuit Clarifies “Accident” Under Commercial Insurance Policy

Asecondcircuit federal appeals court affirmed the lower court’s decision that multi-car accidents were composed of separate events under an insurance provider’s policy.

The plaintiff, National Liability and Fire Insurance Company (“National”) appealed a summary judgment granted in favor of the defendants. National argued the series of events constituted one accident.

  • The accident involved three separate vehicles. The Itzkowitz claimants, also the defendants, occupied one vehicle that struck the detached dump box.
  • The Compton-Herschkowitz claimants, the co-defendants occupied the second vehicle that collided with the same dump box.

The dump box attached to a dump truck that struck an overpass, detached from the truck and landed in a highway lane. Within a few seconds, the claimants struck the same dump box.

The policy language states:

“all bodily injury and property damage resulting from continuous or repeated exposure to substantially the same conditions will be considered as resulting from one accident.”

Unfortunate Events Test

To determine if the events were separate or single events, the court applied the unfortunate events test. First the court determined the cause or “operative incident” giving rise to the events. The court stated the accidents were three separate incidents despite the time that elapsed between the first and second accidents.

The court followed its decision in Appalachian Ins Co v. Gen. Elec. Co., by stating each collision was similar to each individuals exposure to asbestos in Appalachian. 863 N.E.2d

Second, the court considered if a close temporal and spatial relationship existed between the incidents and whether the incidents can be viewed as part of the same causal continuum without intervening agents or factors.

The role of timing

In reference to temporal proximity the appeals court again addressed the role of timing in the unfortunate events test. The court concluded there was no evidence to suggest the timing between events caused the accident to occur; there were only a few seconds in between the events.

For spatial proximity, the collisions of the Itzkowitz and Compton-Hershkowitz vehicle were spatially proximate because they occurred in the same spot with the same dump box.

Third, the court looked to whether the incidents were a causal continuum of the same series of events. In this case, the incidents were as a result of the negligence that caused the dump truck to detach and collide with the overpass.

The courts held the second and third collision with the dump box were separate from the negligence that caused the dump box to detach. Additionally, the damage to the overpass was also a separate event that was not in spatial or temporal proximity to the later collisions.

This case is National Liability & Fire Insurance Co. v. Itzkowitz Et Al., Case No. 14-3651, United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Oakland Jury Awards $13.7 million against Trucking Companies in Crash that Killed 3

truck drivers view in fogOAKLAND, CA — October 13, 2015 — Three San Jose, California, families can now move forward with their lives following the deaths of three family members and nearly three years of litigation as a result of an Oakland, California jury awarding a total of $13.7 million and holding accountable two trucking companies.

Killed in the accident were Quoc Thang Dang, his sister, ThuyTrang Thi Dang and their friend, Thanh Mhan Thi Nguyen. All of them were in Quoc’s 1999 Honda Accord on their way to work. The three left behind their spouses along with a total of 7 children.

Bay Area attorneys Bradley M. Corsiglia, law firm of Corsiglia McMahon & Allard, along with Andrew C. Schwartz, law firm of Casper, Meadows, Schwartz & Cook, represented the three families.

Bad visibility in fog

The truck accident took place on the morning of November 27, 2012 on . Three members of a San Jose Vietnamese family were on their way to work in Dinuba, California, when their Honda was struck head on by a truck driven by Liwei Xu of Oakland.

The accident began when a big rig driven by José Luis Batres, Western Milling Company, attempted to make a left hand turn across two lanes of the freeway. Visibility was less than 200 feet. At the same time, another big rig, driven by Armando Suarez, Jr. of Semper Trucking, hauling 500-pound bales of cotton was coming from the other direction.

As it hit the fog bank the truck clipped the rear of the Batres truck and overturned, spewing bales of cotton on the highway. A few minutes later, Liwei Xu, Well Trucking, entered the fog bank as he approached Road 16 and hit the cotton bales. Mr. Xu lost control, swerved left across the median into the eastbound lanes of the highway and collided head-on with the Honda Accord killing all three occupants.

The jury found Batres 75% at fault for starting the series of collisions by making a left turn across two lanes of traffic in near zero visibility. Xu was found 25% at fault for driving so fast that when he entered the fog bank he did not have time to avoid obstructions in the roadway.

As legal immigrants to the United States, Quoc and Thuy wanted their children to receive the best education possible so they made the sacrifice by moving to San Jose and commuting to work in Dinuba. Quoc’s daughter is completing her studies at UCLA while both of Thuy’s children are now at San Jose State University. Thuy’s husband visits her grave twice a week and talks to her about the children’s achievements.

Corsiglia represented the families of both Quoc Dang and ThuyTrang Dang. The two families received $8.5 million. Schwartz represented the Nguyen family and received $5.2 on their behalf.

$3.3 Million Awarded to Brain Injury Plaintiff Hit By Distracted Driver

$3.35 Million Settlement for Victim in Texas Trucking Accident A Texas man who suffered a concussion, a traumatic brain injury and herniated discs when a tractor-trailer rear-ended him agreed to a $3,350,000 settlement with the trucking company. The Oakley Trucking driver’s cell phone allegedly distracted him at the time of the collision.

Distracted Driving

Plaintiff Thomas East, a 37-year-old customer service representative, was driving his pickup truck on Christmas Eve, 2014, in the San Antonio area when the collision occurred. Impact by David Henefield’s tractor-trailer caused East’s pickup to flip to its roof. East refused a medical transport at the scene but visited an urgent care facility later that night.

East and his wife, Laura East, sued Oakley Trucking and Henefield individually. The couple claimed East had slowed for traffic when Henefield failed to pay attention and control his speed. Plaintiffs’ attorney Ryan H. Zehl, a member of The National Trial Lawyers Top 100, argued that police investigators found Henefield’s inattention and distraction caused the collision. Oakley Trucking’s safety director agreed Henefield was distracted, and Henefield admitted he was following East too closely.

East and his wife argued Henefield made five calls in the fifteen minutes before the collision.

The defense attempted to use accident reconstruction to demonstrate that East came to a sudden stop and Henefield’s collision was unavoidable. Defense counsel denied Henefield was distracted by the calls, which were either dropped or unanswered. The court disagreed and dismissed the defense’s defenses of unavoidable accident and sudden emergency in summary judgment prior to trial.

$3 Million in Damages

Federal regulations allow talking on hands-free devices, but multiple studies have found hands-free calling offers no safety benefits over conventional calls. The American Trucking Association recommends carriers prohibit the use of hands-free devices while driving. The plaintiffs argued that Oakley Trucking’s policies allow dispatchers to send drivers text messages while driving in violation of federal regulations.

East began physical therapy one month after the accident and continued to receive therapy for his cervical injury as of Summer, 2015. He underwent a lumbar fusion in November 2014. At trial, East’s biomechanics expert testified that head and neck injuries were a likely result of the kind of collision East was involved in. Other experts included East’s psychology and neuropsychiatry experts, who testified East suffered from ongoing post-concussion syndrome.

East’s symptoms include severe mood swings, insomnia, anxiety, chronic headaches, vertigo, and difficulty with concentration and executive functions. East has also been rendered unable to work.

The defense alleged East’s brain injury was pre-existing and the result of two previous incidences, a 1996 car accident and a 1998 fall when East struck his head.

The plaintiffs sought approximately $2.1 million for medical expenses, lost wages, lost household services, pain and suffering, and loss of consortium. Insurance policies with American International Group, Inc., XL Specialty Insurance, and Lexington Insurance Co. totaled more than $33 million. The parties settled for $3.35 million prior to trial.

The case is Thomas M. East and Laura A. East v. Oakley Trucking Inc. and David Henefield, No. 2013-CI-03238 in the 73rd Bexar County District Court in Bexar County, Texas.

California Supreme Court Clarifies “Dangerous Condition” on Public Property

CAThe California Supreme Court ruled that in a wrongful death action, government entities are not categorically immune from liability, if dangerous conditions on its property were a proximate cause of the plaintiff’s injuries. The court reversed and remanded the case to the lower court.

Applying previous court decisions, the state supreme court ruled that nothing in The Government Claims Act required the plaintiffs to show the condition caused the defendant’s conduct that precipitated the accident.

Plaintiffs Antonio and Janis Cordova’s three children were killed after a negligent driver collided with the children’s vehicle, causing it to strike a tree in the middle of a grassy center median. The parents filed a wrongful death action against the city.

Holding a public entity liable

The City of Los Angeles owned and maintained the median. Under California’s Government Claims Act, section 835, a public entity can be held liable for injuries caused on it property if the risk of injury was foreseeable and there was enough notice to correct the issue.

The state supreme court decided whether the plaintiffs were required to present evidence that the condition not only caused the plaintiff’s injuries but also contributed to the third party’s conduct.

The plaintiff’s children – Cristyn, Toni and Andrew Cordova – along with Cristyn’s boyfriend, Carlos Campos and a friend Jason Gomez – were travelling on Colorado Avenue when the defendant’s vehicle veered into the side of Cristyn’s car.

Both vehicles were travelling above the posted speed limit and the impact caused Cristyn’s vehicle to spin out of control, hitting a large magnolia tree planted in the center median.

The three children and Jason Gomez did not survive the accident. The negligent driver, Rostislav Shnayder was convicted on four counts of vehicular manslaughter.

Dangerous Conditions

The parents argued that the magnolia tree in the grassy area was a dangerous condition and a proximate cause of the fatalities because it was too close to the traveling portion of the roadway.

To prove the tree presented a foreseeable dangerous condition, the plaintiffs submitted 142 accident reports that spanned a 10-year period from the same location. Additionally, testimony from several experts viewed the condition the same way.

The city objected and moved for summary judgment, arguing that the plaintiffs had to prove the public property in some way “caused, facilitated, or encouraged” Shnayder’s conduct. The city also objected to the evidence plaintiff presented. The trial and appeals court agreed with the city’s argument.

Specifically, the lower court stated that even if the evidence were wrongfully excluded, nothing about the street would cause someone to veer into the trees.

Forseeable risk

Under the Government Claims Act, a public entity may be held liable for injury caused by a dangerous condition on its property, if the risk of injury was reasonably foreseeable and the entity had sufficient notice of the danger to take corrective measures.

A dangerous condition of public property arises when it is physically damaged, deteriorated, or defective in a way as to foreseeably endanger people using the property.

The court explained that a third party conducting a harmful act on public property alone is not sufficient to invoke section 835.

The plaintiff has to show that the dangerous condition existed at the time of the injury, and the the condition of the property caused the injuries.

On remand, the state supreme court instructed the lower court to consider the evidence presented and determine whether the roadway was in fact a dangerous condition.

This case is Antonio Cardova et al. v. City of Los Angeles, case number S208130, Supreme Court of California.

$3.35 Million Settlement for Victim in Texas Trucking Accident

TruckingA victim rear-ended by a tractor-trailer driver received a $3.35 million settlement from the driver’s employer and defendant, Oakley Trucking.

Plaintiff Thomas M. East was driving his pickup along Loop 410 in San Antonio, TX, when the truck driver, David Henefield, struck him from behind. East filed suit alleging the driver was distracted and inattentive to the road, thus causing the collision.

East sustained multiple injuries including a traumatic brain injury, concussion and back herniation. According to the plaintiff’s biochemical expert, head and neck injuries were a likely result from the rear-end collision.

Although East suffered from prior-concussion syndrome from prior incidents, the additional accident contributed to severe mood swings, memory impairment and insomnia.

Texting truck drivers

The plaintiff presented expert testimony that confirmed that hands-free devices are allowed while driving but does not offer any safety benefits over normal calls.

The defense argued the accident was unavoidable because the plaintiff’s sudden halt left Henefield no time to stop. However, the defenses’s “sudden emergency” and “unavoidable accident” defenses were dismissed at summary judgment.

The plaintiff argued Oakley Trucking allowed drivers to send text messages and make calls while driving in violation of federal regulations. Additionally, plaintiff noted the driver made five calls within 15 minutes of the collision.

In response to the allegations, Oakley stated incoming calls received prior to the incident were dropped and left unanswered, maintaining their position that their driver was not in violation of any federal regulations.

The plaintiff sought among other damages, $1.78 million for past and future medical expenses, $975,200 for lost wages, and a little over $48,000 for household services.

This case was handled by The National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Attorney Ryan Zehl.


Jury Awards $67 Million to Passenger Paralyzed in Chain Reaction Auto Accident

auto accident scene

The scene of the accident: Route 624 near entrance to Interstate 77.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — A young man who was paralyzed in a company vehicle accident recovered a jury verdict of $67.4 million.

Thomas J. Henry Injury Attorneys represented the plaintiff.

The auto accident occurred on August 28, 2012 when Christopher J. Arnold was a passenger in a Ford SportTrak vehicle traveling on FM 624 (Northwest Blvd.) near Calallen, Texas.

The vehicle Arnold was traveling in made a U-turn onto the freeway in front of a van, thereby causing a collision. Arnold’s vehicle was then struck a second time by a 2009 Chevrolet Silverado pickup driven by Robert Earl Sims, an employee of Weatherford, U.S., L.P.

Chain reaction collision

Attorneys for defendants Robert Earl Sims and Weatherford argued the driver of Arnold’s vehicle, who made the U-turn, was responsible for causing a chain reaction collision. Furthermore, the defense argued that Arnold was not wearing a seat belt, thereby causing his own injuries.

In both the opening and closing arguments, Thomas J. Henry stated to the jury:

  • Safe following distance rules protected all drivers including Arnold, the vehicle’s passenger.
  • No policy and procedure on safe following distance existed at Weatherford.
  • Sims and Weatherford could have prevented the wreck.


Liability disputed

Arnold sustained neck and back injuries, vertebral fractures, spinal cord injuries, a brain bleed, a collapsed lung, lacerated spleen, and rib fractures. He remains paralyzed from the waist down.

Although liability was disputed in the case, it was ultimately determined that Robert Earl Sims and Weatherford, U.S., L.P. were at fault for the accident. The jury found that the accident resulted from negligence and gross negligence and awarded Thomas J. Henry Injury Attorneys’ client a total of $67 million.

‘We have seen time and time again how drivers operating company vehicles can cause serious injuries,’ Thomas J. Henry stated.

‘We are pleased that the jury was able to recognize how this company’s failure to enforce proper safety protocol was to blame for this accident. I sincerely hope that verdicts like this will keep our families safer on the roadways,’ Thomas J. Henry added.