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Defective brakes blamed in crash at intersection – $388,000 Verdict

The driver of the defendant’s tanker truck drove through a red light and struck the plaintiff’s vehicle.

The brakes on the third axle were inoperable and one front brake was out of adjustment.

Evidence showed that the defendant did not properly maintain its vehicles and knew the brakes were bad before putting the tanker on the road that day.


Type of action: Personal injury
Injuries alleged: Occipital neuritis, neck strain, low back pain
Name of case: Slusher v. Great Falls Septic Service Inc.
Court: Fairfax County Circuit Court
Case no.: 2009-08534
Tried before: Jury
Name of judge: Randy I. Bellows
Special damages: Medical and lost wages totaling $16,789
Verdict or Settlement: Verdict
Amount: $388,000 total – $188,000 compensatory, $200,000 punitive
Date: July 14, 2010
Demand: $140,000
Highest offer: $100,000
Expert: Deputy Christopher Rizzo, Loudoun County Sheriff’s Department
Insurance carrier: Companion Property & Casualty
Plaintiff’s attorneys: Edward L. Weiner and Lawson D. Spivey III, Fairfax

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