The Eighth District Court of Appeals for the State of Ohio has upheld a $30M judgment to the bus passenger against the transportation line. The Plaintiff was one of 43 passengers injured in a 2013 crash on a Pennsylvania highway. A fellow passenger died in the crash when the bus driver fell asleep at the wheel. Plaintiff lost his right leg and went through more than 30 surgeries to repair a hole in his heart, torn muscles, as well as crushed bones in his foot, pelvis and arm. The transportation lines bus driver fell asleep while driving on Interstate 80 and crashed the bus into the back of a tractor-trailer.
The appeals court rejected all of the bus company’s arguments. The appellate judges determined that Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge John Sutula made correct decisions during the trial and agreed with his opinion that the transportation line made incommensurate low offers to settle the case for $6.7M before the trial, $8M as the trial started and $10M during the trial.
The April 11, 2019, Case Decision List for the Eighth District Court of Appeals for the State of Ohio states:
Appellant failed to show that a sudden emergency existed and that its driver did not violate the assured clear distance rule…
Appellant’s delegating discretion to drivers whether to ignore specific rules in the handbook was equivalent to ignoring passenger safety. The award of punitive damages was not error.
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