Car Accident Lawsuit - News and Settlements
Accident Lawsuit: Family Awarded $18 Million In Fatal Bus Accident
In April 2017, respected reconstructive hand surgeon Dr. Kayvan Khiabani was out for a bike ride when he found himself alongside a tour bus built by Motor Coach Industries (MCI). Suddenly, the 51-year-old father of two collided with the bus in what turned out to be a fatal accident.
Nearly a year later, on March 23, Dr. Khiabani’s two teenage children were awarded a cumulative total of nearly $19 million by a Nevada jury as compensation for their father’s death, as a jury agreed with the plaintiffs’ contention that MCI had failed to adequately warn about dangers associated with its vehicle.
In arguing on behalf of the children, Dr. Khiabani’s estate, and his now-deceased wife’s estate, lawyers for the plaintiffs had claimed that, although the particular bus that killed Dr. Khiabani had been manufactured in 2007, MCI had failed to significantly update the bus’s design since 1992. In arguing that this failure to update its buses with what in many instances has become standard technology amounted to a design defect, the plaintiffs cited the bus’s lacking both sensors on the side of the vehicle and a rear wheel protector. Plaintiffs also argued that the bus was defectively designed because of its large blind spot—which may have played a role in the driver failing to see Dr. Khiabani prior to the accident—and its flawed aerodynamics.
While finding against plaintiffs on the design defect claim, the jury did agree that MCI failed to adequately warn about the danger posed by air blasts emanating from the vehicle. The verdict granted Keon Khiabana a total of $9.2 million and Aria Khiabani a total of $7 million in damages for past grief and sorrow, future loss of financial support, and future loss of companionship. The estate of their mother was awarded $1.5 million for suffering while she was still alive, and Dr. Kiabani’s estate was awarded $1 million.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, contact the expert attorneys at TheLawFirm.com now for free consultation.
Used Car Dealer Liable In Accident
A California court of appeals issued a ruling March 2 upholding a jury verdict awarding a plaintiff $7.4 million in damages for injuries suffered in an automobile accident allegedly caused by a used-car dealer’s failure to conduct needed repairs to a vehicle.
On November 3, 2017, Robert Dunlap borrowed his friend William Chapman’s truck, a Ford F-250 that Chapman had purchased used at Folsom Lake Ford. Dunlap hitched a van to the truck and hit the Arizona highway. After some time, however, the van Dunlap was towing got a flat tire, causing the vehicle to swerve violently toward the highway’s center median. When Dunlap attempted to regain control of the vehicle, the steering wheel locked, and the truck—van still in town—went careening off the road into the barrier. In the accident, Dunlap suffered injuries that left him partially paralyzed.
In his suit against Folsom Lake Ford, Dunlap had alleged that a prior owner had suffered almost identical problems with the steering, causing that owner to return the vehicle to the dealership. Even Dunlap’s friend—the vehicle’s then-owner William Chapman—had taken the truck back to the dealership, citing problems with the steering. As Chapman and his wife later would testify, a dealership technician had told the couple that the truck’s ball joints—which connect the wheels to the axis—were worn, but that there was nothing wrong with the steering.
At trial court, however, a jury found the dealership fully liable for Dunlap’s injuries, relying in part on expert testimony that concluded that the worn-out ball joints had resulted in the steering “locking up”. Worn ball joints can cause wheels on the same axis to begin spinning out of sync with one another, a phenomenon known as “stubbing”, which experts for the plaintiff claimed prevented Dunlap from being able to steer during the emergency situation.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an automobile accident, contact the attorneys at TheLawFirm.com today for a free consultation.