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2019 - First Quarter

April 1, 2019

Trial Numbers

MVA - Plaintiffs won 7/10.

General Negligence - Plaintiffs won 1/2.

Pedestrian Injuries - Plaintiffs won 1/1.

Bicycle injuries - Plaintiffs won 0/1.

Notable Cases

Laing v. Tri-County Metropolitan Transit District of Oregon, Multnomah County Case No. 17CV36490

Plaintiff was walking on the sidewalk attempting to cross the east and west bound MAX train tracks to get to a stopped westbound MAX train.  She was struck by an out of service eastbound MAX train and suffered severe injuries including a traumatic amputation of her right leg above the knee. Plaintiff alleged that the MAX platform was unreasonably dangerous because it had crossing gates for vehicles but no similar crossing gates for pedestrians. She further alleged that the MAX platform was unreasonably dangerous because there were no warning lights in a pedestrians line of sight when that pedestrian was walking across the east and westbound tracks to the westbound platform. She further alleged that the platform was unreasonably dangerous because the warning bells that sounded to indicate an approaching train inexplicably stop ten to fifteen seconds prior to the train arriving. Plaintiff sought damages for past medical expenses totaling $799,917, past last wages of $75,255, future medical expenses of $4,844,151, future last earnings capacity of $1,489,400, and $20 Million for non- economic damages.

Defendant TRI-MET alleged that Plaintiff’s injuries were caused by her own negligence in failing to maintain a proper lookout, failing to be aware of her surroundings, running across the MAX tracks, wearing a hooded sweatshirt in a manner that impaired her ability to see, and wearing headphones with music at a volume that impaired her ability to hear and be aware of her surroundings.

Total Verdict - $8,700,000.00 after 42% reduction for comparative negligence.  

Garrison v. Industrial Finishes and Systems, Inc., Multnomah County Case No. 17CV18794

Plaintiff Garrison was stopped for traffic on I-5 when a driver for defendant’s company failed to stop and crashed into the back plaintiff’s vehicle. Plaintiff alleged crash related injuries including a disc injury to his neck requiring disc replacement surgery, injury to his thyroid requiring partial removal of his thyroid, nerve injuries, and low back injuries. Plaintiff sought $124,079.53 for past medical expenses,$225,000.00 for future medical expenses, $99,600.00 for past wage losses,$950,000.00 for impaired future earnings capacity, and $3 Million for non-economic damages.

Defendant admitted negligence and that the crash caused plaintiff some injury but disputed the nature and extent of plaintiffs injuries and damages.

Total Verdict - $1,846,425.00.

Majalca v. Pond, Multnomah County Case No. 18CV02644

Plaintiff Majalca was driving his car when he stopped at an intersection and was rear ended by Defendant Pond. Plaintiff alleged that the crash was the result of Defendant not keeping a proper lookout. He alleged that the crash aggravated a prior infirm condition of severe spinal stenosis in his neck and back. He sought $142,131.11 for past medical expenses, and $500,000 for non-economic damages.

Defendant Pond admitted liability and that the crash caused some injury to Plaintiff but disputed the nature and extent of those injuries and Plaintiff’s damages.

Total Verdict - $126,785.00.

Ziemer v. City of Portland, Multnomah County Case No. 18CV03811

Plaintiff was a bicyclist who was traveling westbound on SE Morrison approaching the intersection at SE 11th Ave when he hit a curb and crashed. Defendant City of Portland maintained the crosswalk and roadways. Plaintiff alleged that the City of Portland knew or should have known that the crosswalk at this intersection was unreasonably dangerous for bicyclists due to its layout which included a curb in middle of the crosswalk, lack of reflective paint, and lack of lighting that would make the curb visible at night.  He alleged that the crash caused him injuries including nasal and septal bone fractures, a subarachnoid hemorrhage, radial head fracture, fractures to multiple fingers, and broken teeth. He sought $65,972.83 for past medical expenses and $500,000 for non-economic damages.  

Defendant City of Portland alleged that Plaintiff was responsible for his own injuries for failing to maintain a proper lookout, failing to negotiate the turn at the intersection properly, bicycling without proper lighting equipment for the limited visibility conditions, failing to use his lane appropriately, bicycling at a speed that was unsafe for the conditions, and not wearing a bicycle helmet.

Defense Verdict.

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