$900,000 for Injuries Sustained by Worker on Shredding Truck
51 year old employee of a paper shredding truck company recovered $900,000 after his foot was partially amputated in 2015 by the cutting blades of a mobile truck shredder when he climbed into the hopper to clear a paper jam. Our client’s boot and foot were pulled into the shredder, severing his toes and mangling his right foot. Andy Rossetti handled the case for RD.
A lawsuit was filed against the manufacturer of the truck alleging that the truck was defective because the hopper should have been guarded in a way that would have prevented employees from gaining access to the hopper and which defendant’s employees acknowledged as a hazard. Unbelievably, discovery revealed that as early as 2009, the defendant manufacturer was aware of the danger and began selling an add-on guard that could be retrofitted onto the existing truck to prevent worker access to the hopper. They also conceded that the newly designed models all came with this guard, the result of several large customers insisting on that feature. However, defendant never warned any of the owners of older truck models about the hazard or the availability of retrofit guards. RD hired a product engineer expert who opined that the truck was defectively designed and dangerous and should have contained a barrier guard to prevent a worker from accessing the hopper.
The defense contended that RD’s client was solely responsible for his injuries because he should not have entered the hopper. RD countered that the worker was trained to do it this way and did not really have a meaningful choice without being terminated. He underwent three surgeries, has on-going phantom limb pain, incurred medical bills and incurred future lost wages as a result of having to give up his CDL trucking license. The case was settled in mid-2018.