The Accident Lawyers Network Blog
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
Jury Awards $22.5 Million in Injury Case
Thirty-eight year old Dawn Renae Diaz was awarded $22.5 million for injuries sustained in a 2006 auto accident in Ventura County, California. Prior to her injuries, Diaz was the head emergency-room nurse at Community Memorial Hospital.
Diaz was travelling south on Highway 101 when a collision occurred between a speeding Peterbilt box truck and a pickup truck travelling in the opposite direction. The collision caused the pickup to cross the center divider where it landed on top of Diaz's car. Diaz suffered severe brain injuries, was in a coma for two and a half months, and now has difficulty walking and speaking, and suffers double vision. She also requires around the clock care.
The defendants in the case are Jose Gerardo Carcamo, who drove the Peterbilt truck, and piockup truck driver, Karen Tagliaferri. The jury found that the two shared responsibility for the accident. Also at fault is Carcamo's employer, Sugar Transport of the Northwest. Sugar Transport has admitted that they did not give safety training to any of their drivers. Furthermore, Carcamo's previous employer had told Sugar Transport that he was fired for being an unsafe driver. Sugar Transport testified they hired Caracamo because they "needed to put bodies behind the wheel."
Dawn Renae Diaz
Over the course of the five-week trial, Diaz's former co-workers, including doctors and nurses, testified Diaz was a dedicated and hardworking caregiver. She started working in the hospital as a clerk, but when her potential was seen, she was encouraged to go to nursing school. Diaz had been working as a nurse for the last 12 years. She now lives with her mother in a mobile home. And she has lost custody of her daughter, Mikeala, because she is a single mother and can no longer care for her due to her injuries.
Of the $22.5 million award, $16 million will cover past and future medical and nursing care, and will help to cover the cost of a nanny for Mikeala. The rest of the award was given for physical pain, mental suffering, past medical expenses and lost wages.
Labels: auto accidents
posted by Neil at 2:56 PM
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