$2.55 Million to a mason injured in a tractor roll-over accident.
Albert Bigham, Sr. and Rosemary Bigham v. Dynamic Industries, Inc.; Hoyt-Buettner Tractor Company; and Carters Rentals
Andrew R. Gillin and Edwin J. Wilson, Jr.
Branson, FitzGerald and Howard, Redwood City, by Thomas Branson; and Richard Bartke, Richmond for Carters Rentals
Meadows, Dorris, Harris and Striker, San Francisco, by Tom Dorris and; Bishop, Barry, Howe, and Reid, San Francisco, by C. Nelson Barry for Dynamic Industries
Thomas Marple, San Francisco, by Steven Ferch for Dynamic Industries
McNamara for Hoyt-Buettner Tractor Company
The Plaintiff attorneys have requested that we list he experts who were testifying in trial.
Lucien L. Trigliano M.D. (Physical Medicine) San Francisco
William Anderson M.D. (Neurologist) San Mateo
Walter J. Treanor M.D. (Physical Medicine) Reno, Nevada
Paul Kayfetz (Forensic Photographer) Bolinas
William Blythe PhD (Physicist) San Jose
Robert Linscog (Mechanical Engineer) San Jose
Thaddeus J. Whalen PhD (Economist) Santa Clara
Robert G. Liptai PhD (Reconstruction) Alameda
Harry Campbell (Economist) San Francisco
Roy S. Cornwell (Reconstruction) Livermore
Harold R. Walt (Economist) San Francisco
Hon. Carl W. Anderson
January 20, 1979 plaintiff Albert Bigham, Sr., 59 year old cement mason from Oakland, was injured when the tractor he was operating rolled over in Berkeley. Mrs. Bigham sued for loss of consortium.
Plaintiffs contended that the tractor was improperly balanced because it lacked sufficient counterweights and fluid filled tires; that the fluid was removed from the tires by Carters Rentals and/or Hoyt-Buettner Tractor Company; and that the tractor failed to meet manufacturers specifications (SAR Standards).
Defendants contended that the accident was due to the improper use of the tractor by Mr. Bigham; that the driver was operating the tractor on improper terrain, was driving too fast, failed to wear a seat belt, failed to wear a hard hat; and that the plaintiff drove the tractor into a ditch.
Case settled on the third day of the trial.
INJURIES: Mr. Bigham is an irreversible C-6 quadriplegic who developed advanced contracture in the hip joints, knee joints and elbow joints. He suffered several pulmonary and skin problems related to his quadriplegia. He required 24 hour a day attendant care. His life expectancy is 15 years.
Defendants contended that the plaintiff would need attendant less than 24 hours a day; and that his life expectancy was six years.
Medical to date and future $1,250,000. Disputed.
Wage loss to date and future $154,000. Miscellaneous special equipment.
Case settled for $2,550,000.00; present value as follows:
Dynamic Industries settled for $1,500,000 approximately one year prior to trial; Hoyt-Buettner Tractor Company settled for $700,000 approximately one month prior to trial; and Carters Rentals settled for $350,000 on the third day of the trial. (Plaintiffs purchased and annuity with $1,050,000 of the settlement which pays a monthly rate of $25,000. Estimated future value of settlement, based on life expectancy of six to fifteen years is $3,300,000 to $6,000,000.