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$________ TOTAL Motor Vehicle Negligence – Single Vehicle Collision – Defendant driver loses control on rural road at night, striking tree – Co-defendant gas station owner fails to advise of worn tire – Plaintiff passenger/high school student suffers fractures to orbit and femur – Surgeries.

Sussex County, NJ

The plaintiff passenger contended that the defendant driver negligently failed to properly maintain the tires and traveled around a curve at an excessive rate of speed on a rural road within the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area at night. The plaintiff contended that as a result, the defendant driver lost control and the car went off the road and struck a tree.

The investigating police officers had noted that one of the tires was bald. The plaintiff’s expert engineer would have testified that this factor contributed to the accident. The co-defendant gas station owner, who inspected the car ten months earlier when it had been driven approximately ________ fewer miles, testified in discovery that it is his custom and practice to advise a customer to place a new tire on a wheel once the tread has become worn to a certain degree. The gas station owner also indicated that he had not advised the automobile owner to change the tire. The plaintiff’s engineer concluded that when he inspected the car, the tire wear was at least as great as that indicated by the co-defendant to prompt advisements to change the tire. The plaintiff’s expert would have testified at trial that the condition of the tire contributed to the happening of the accident.

The plaintiff suffered a fractured orbit that required surgery and the insertion of hardware. The plaintiff’s expert plastic surgeon contended that the plaintiff will permanently suffer pain and some drooping of the eyelid. The plaintiff also suffered a fractured femur. The plaintiff’s orthopedic surgeon would have testified that the plaintiff will suffer some permanent pain and leg scarring despite surgery in which an intramedullary rod and screws were inserted. The defendants maintained that the plaintiff made a good recovery and the evidence would have reflected that the plaintiff returned to baseball playing and is a catcher on his high school varsity team.The defendant driver had a $________ policy. The case settled prior to trial for $________ from the driver and $________ from the gas station owner for a total recovery of $________.

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