Plaintiff was a salesperson from West Virginia visiting Richmond for a business meeting when she claimed her suitcase became entangled with the panel of an escalator, jerking the suitcase in her left hand and tearing her rotator cuff.
Liability was vigorously contested by the owner of the escalator, who claimed video of the injury depicted the plaintiff attempting to adjust her suitcase at which time she lost her balance, causing her injury.
They also alleged it was not possible for the suitcase to have become entangled in the escalator mechanism as alleged.
Plaintiff’s expert claimed the owner of the escalator had failed to maintain it correctly, allowing a screw to extend from the side of the escalator into the plaintiff’s suitcase.
Plaintiff failed to report any injury on the day of the incident and traveled from Richmond to another state for a second business meeting. Once she returned home she received medical care days later. The plaintiff’s medical bills were paid by her workers’ compensation carrier, which compromised its lien. The matter was mediated with the Hon. Thomas S. Shadrick serving as mediator.[18-T-109]
Type of action: Personal Injury
Injuries alleged: Left shoulder rotator cuff tear
Name of case: Confidential
Verdict or settlement: Settlement
Attorney for plaintiff: John C. Shea, Richmond
Plaintiff’s experts: Lawrence Shoen, PE – engineer/escalator operation; John J. Jasko, MD – orthopedic surgeon; William Nitardy, MD – internal medicine; Larry D. Dial, MD – internal medicine; V. Robert May III, MD – functional capacity evaluation
Defendant’s experts: Kenneth J. Smith – mechanical engineer; William Newberry, PE – biomechanics; George Moore, MA – vocational rehabilitation; Paul E. Caldwell, MD – orthopedic surgeon; Donald G. Hope, MD – neurosurgeon