Who is Responsible if a Truck Causes a Tree Limb to Fall and Injure Someone Else?
The experienced tree fall injury attorneys in Philadelphia at Reiff & Bily have seen firsthand the devastating injuries that may be caused by fallen trees and tree branches, and, in most of these cases, there is someone responsible.
In a Virginia case, a truck reversing struck branches on a nearby tree dislodging a large limb which fell and struck the plaintiff on the head causing a spinal cord contusion. Initial injuries resulted in paresthesia from the neck down. Three years after the accident, the victim underwent fusion surgery to his cervical spine, C3-C6, to address those symptoms. The victim, according to reports of the case, now suffers from a lost range of motion in his head and continues suffering from numbness in his limbs as well as has difficulty walking and grasping things in his non-dominant hand.
The victim sued the driver of the concrete truck alleging that he failed to keep a proper lookout and was negligent in striking the branches, as well as the owner of the truck under Respondent Superior liability theory for the driver’s negligence. The defendants denied liability and filed a counterclaim against the victim’s brother and property owner claiming that the victim’s brother was acting as a spotter for the truck and he had done so negligently and the property owner was negligent because he failed to prune the tree limb properly causing it to fall. Defendants further argued that the victim was contributorily negligent for standing behind the truck. After the verdict, defendants filed a Motion to Set Aside the Verdict and the parties subsequently settled for $2.5 million dollars.