Miles, Sears & Eanni attorney Richard Watters recently reached a $1.5 million settlement for traffic accident victims in a personal injury case John Powell and Addison Cartozian v. High Class Limousines; et al.
Defendant High Class Limousines transported a group of 11 passengers, including Mr. Powell and Mr. Cartozian, on the night the accident occurred. While stopped at a stop sign in rural southeast Fresno County, the limousine’s left side was struck by a U-Haul driven by an unknown individual who fled immediately after the impact. At the time of the accident, the limousine only provided seat belts for passengers seated in the rear two bench seats. The seat belts for the other passengers in the passenger compartment, including Mr. Powell and Mr. Cartozian, were located beneath the bench seat in the original manufactured position.
Mr. Powell sustained a serious back injury resulting in chronic back and extremity pain. As a result of his injuries, Mr. Powell is now forced to use a cane and has been unable to return to work as a stereo installer. Mr. Cartozian suffered a cognitive injury from the crash.
Plaintiffs contended that the provision of seat belts to passengers, including Mr. Powell and Mr. Cartozian, would have prevented their injuries, which was disputed by the defense. The defense also disputed the seriousness of plaintiffs’ injuries and whether Mr. Powell’s were caused by a pre-existing narrowing of his spinal canal.
The parties reached a $1,575,000 settlement on February 15, 2017.