The plaintiff, a thirty- nine (39) year old New York City Police Department Sergeant, was on her way to work, driving a 2001 Chevy. As Plaintiff was exiting a parking lot and making a left hand turn onto Flatlands Avenue, in Brooklyn, The defendant, operating a 2000 Freightliner truck, struck Plaintiff's vehicle. At the time of the accident, Plaintiff was making an illegal left hand turn across the two Westbound lanes of travel on Flatlands, and across a double yellow line, in order to proceed Eastbound on Flatlands Avenue. Defendant was driving Westbound on Flatlands Avenue. The impact was at the front drivers side of Plaintiff's vehicle and the front of Defendant's vehicle.
Plaintiff alleged that Defendant was driving at an excessive rate of speed, thereby causing the accident.
Defendants argued that Plaintiff made an illegal left hand turn, in front of Defendant's vehicle, thereby causing the accident. Defendants claim that Defendant attempted to avoid Plaintiff's vehicle, however was unable to do so as a result of Plaintiff's sudden exit of the parking lot and into Defendants path of travel.
Plaintiff was rendered unconscious and taken by ambulance to Brookdale Hospital. Plaintiff remained at the hospital for eight days with a head injury. Plaintiff underwent multiple diagnostic studies of the head and brain, the results of which were normal, except a finding of congenital hydrocephalus, a pre-existing condition.
Plaintiff was ultimately diagnosed with a diffuse axonal injury and was transferred to Jamaica Hospital for rehabilitation, where she remained for one month.
Following discharge, Plaintiff continued to experience short term memory loss, headaches, cognitive delays and depression. Plaintiff continued to undergo outpatient rehabilitation.
As a result of his injuries, Plaintiff sought recovery for her past and future pain and suffering, medical expenses and loss of earnings.
Defendants claimed that Plaintiff suffered an initial head injury as a result of the accident, but that her condition resolved. Defendants further claimed that Plaintiff's condition may have been as a result of her pre-existing congenital hydrocephalus.
The parties reached a $1,800,000 settlement prior to trial. The case was handled by Jeffrey Block and S. Joseph Donahue of Block O'Toole & Murphy.