A 32-year-old bicyclist was injured in an accident with a shuttle bus when the bus failed to yield to the bicycle rider, and instead ran over the victim. The bicyclist’s pelvis was fractured in several places as a result of being run over by the bus.
The accident took place in November of 2009 near John Wayne Airport. Even more than two years after this accident took place, the bike rider continues to suffer from chronic neck, back and pelvis pain, along with other effects from the injuries sustained in the crash.
Now, in one of the largest settlements ever in Orange County, the bus company has agreed to pay $6 million to the bicycle rider. This settlement was most likely reached because the driver of the shuttle bus admits to not having seen the bicyclist and failed to yield to the bicycle rider.
The shuttle bus company attempted to argue that the bike rider had used Xanax and marijuana which could have contributed to the crash. Apparently, it was also dark because the accident occurred at night, and the defense argued that it would be difficult to see the passing bicyclist who was wearing dark clothing and no reflective markings.
Nevertheless, in an effort to avoid the repercussions of the possibility of a larger jury verdict, the shuttle bus company agreed to settle this California bicycle accident lawsuit, for an amount that they assume is less than that which a jury might award.
With this large settlement in favor of the bicycle rider, hopefully more drivers on California roadways will be on the lookout for bicycle riders, especially when visibility is limited.
Source: The Orange County Register, “Bike rider gets $6 million in settlement,” Vik Jolly, Feb. 10, 2012