A Portland jury awarded nearly half a million dollars to an elderly woman who tripped and broke her ankle while climbing out of an airport shuttle.
Dorothy Kohut, who is now 74, won $476,500 for medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering after a jury found that the driver’s negligence had caused her fall. Kohut, a regular customer of Blue Star Airport Express, was on her way home from a trip to the East Coast to visit her grandchildren. The company’s drivers had always helped her exit their shuttle vans in the past. But this time, the driver stopped in the darkness, about 20 feet short of her well-lit driveway and didn’t provide a step stool or help her down from the van. Alone in the dark, Kohut stepped down into a depression in the concrete surrounding a water meter cover. She fell, badly breaking her ankle.
During the four-day trial, the driver told a different story. He claimed Kohut should have worn different shoes, should have known where the depression was in the dark, and should have been responsible for her own safety.
But the jury sided with Kohut, assigning 90 percent of the blame for her fall to Blue Star. She developed arthritis because of the fall, and could only walk for a few blocks at a time – with the help of an expensive brace. She is unable to indulge in two favorite activities, gardening and dancing. Her injuries also forced her to go part-time at her job as an occupational therapist at the Oregon State Hospital.
If you have suffered an injury and need someone to fight on your behalf, Kafoury & McDougal are here to help. Give us a call to discuss your case.