Practice Area Category: Motor Vehicle Accident
When his 1999 Acura Integra rolled over the seatbelt failed to prevent his head from striking the roof, leaving the driver a quadriplegic. During discovery, Eisenberg Rothweiler’s attorneys uncovered a 1992 roll over test showing Honda was aware of the defect and failed to redesign the seatbelt or alert the public. This incident could and should have been avoided by using a safer design that already existed. The verdict is the largest automotive defect award in Pennsylvania history.
A mother of two severely autistic boys was buried alive when her SUV collided with a dump truck carrying tons of sand. The driver of the dump truck swerved to avoid hitting another vehicle, causing the load of sand to shift and tip the vehicle over and onto the SUV. Eisenberg Rothweiler trial attorneys, Ken Rothweiler, Fred Eisenberg and Dan Sherry tried the case for the Walsh family against three defendants: the driver of the truck; the mining company that loaded the sand, and the driver who was creeping out onto the roadway which caused the dump truck to swerve. A high-low agreement was reached before verdict to provide a more speedy recovery of funds for the family of the deceased.
En route to an athletic event, a high school’s van driven by the coach left the road, rolled over and severely injured a high school athlete. Although wearing a seatbelt, the student was partially ejected from the van and is now a wheelchair-dependent quadriplegic. Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., filed a civil complaint in the New York State Supreme Court, alleging that the City was responsible for the actions of the High School and Coach; that the school was negligent in its failure to advise its coaches and staff that transporting students in passenger vans was prohibited under law. Suit was also filed against the van’s manufacturer because the passenger van lacked canopy airbags to prevent occupant ejection during a rollover, and against the automotive company for designing a seatbelt that did not provide reasonable restraint. The result achieved by Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., ranks in the top five largest settlements against New York City.
An 8-year-old boy was killed after he was ejected from a van struck by a tractor-trailer. The van’s lift gate latch failed upon impact, opening the rear gate and ejecting all occupants inside. The boy was then run over by oncoming traffic. Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., argued before a jury that the minivan was not crashworthy and did not offer adequate protection from a collision. The automobile manufacturer knew that in certain scenarios, the rear hatch could open due to a design flaw in the latch mechanism. It was also known that the seats would collapse backward and the seatbelts would be unable to keep the occupants in the vehicle. The manufacturer did not warn drivers or issue a recall. Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., recovered a large award for the boy’s family during the trial.
A young woman was driving her SUV at only 35 mph when struck by another motorist, causing her vehicle to roll over. She was ejected from the vehicle when her seatbelt malfunctioned. As a result, she has chronic, intractable pain from metal rods surgically placed in her back to stabilize her spinal cord, and required surgery to remove a kidney damaged in the rollover. Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., argued that the auto manufacturer was responsible for an SUV design which was not crashworthy and failed to protect the driver in such a collision. The manufacturer acknowledged the propensity for the vehicle to rollover, yet did nothing to warn or protect drivers. Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., recovered a large settlement for the client.
The plaintiff, then 27 years old, sustained severe brain injuries as a passenger in a pick-up truck that ran a stoplight and collided with a tractor-trailer. The driver of the pick-up had auto insurance with a $300,000 policy limit. In an all-day session of negotiation before the judge scheduled to preside over trial in the case, Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., was able to show that the tractor-trailer driver had been negligent by speeding down the exit ramp and could not stop in time to avoid the collision. The City of Philadelphia agreed to pay $50,000 for poor maintenance in the area of the accident, and the company owning the tractor-trailer agreed to pay $3.75 million in the case. The settlement is essential to care for the needs of the victim, who today is ambulatory in a wheelchair, has hearing difficulties and double vision, loss of hand-eye coordination and impaired use of her hands, as well as short-term memory loss and urinary dysfunction.