A Louisiana jury awarded a verdict of $117 million last month in a case against Acadian Ambulance Service. The Plaintiff, Whitney Lacey, was left paralyzed and brain-damaged when the ambulance she was in crashed into a sugar-cane truck on the way to a hospital in December 2010. Ms. Lacey was seven months pregnant when she called for an ambulance. Acadian took full responsibility for the wreck, but will appeal other issues. Ms. Lacey had a baby born by cesarean section while she was in a coma. The 22-year-old woman was unconscious for three months, and could not talk when she regained consciousness.
Ms. Lacey has now regained some speech, but according to reports, has a long way to go. She can move only one arm and trial testimony indicated she will need 24-hour care for the rest of her life. The jury found that $2.7 million should go for the baby’s health care costs with $114.3 million allotted for Ms. Lacey’s health care costs over the next 50 years. The suit was filed in Iberville Parish district court. Testimony revealed that the ambulance driver, Michael Averette, crashed into the truck when he bent to pick up a GPS device from the floor. Tony Clayton, with Clayton, Fruge & Ward, a Baton Rouge firm, along with Kurt Arnold from Arnold & Itkin in Houston, Texas, represented Ms. Lacey and they did a very good job in this case.
Source: Insurance Journal