$6M Settlement for 5 People Injured in Ohio Greyhound Bus Rollover
By Dean I. Weitzman, Esq. on March 18th, 2016
Five people who suffered serious neck and back injuries when the Greyhound bus they were riding in veered off an Ohio Interstate highway in 2013 have received a $6 million settlement in the case.
The driver of the bus had slumped over the steering wheel of the bus as it traveled down Interstate 75 in Liberty Township near Cincinnati on Sept. 14, 2013, causing the bus to careen out of control off the road before overturning several times, according to a March 8 story by WCPO TV Channel 9.
Thirty-seven of the 51 passengers on the Detroit-bound bus were injured in the crash and 15 were taken to area hospitals following the crash, the story reported. Passengers told police that the driver, Dwayne Garrett, 64, of Cincinnati, was “slumped over at the wheel just before the wreck and didn’t respond to their shouts of ‘Wake up! Wake up!'” according to the story.
An accident report from the Ohio State Highway Patrol said that the driver had “told investigators he was drinking coffee, began coughing violently and passed out,” the story said. Garrett was ticketed for a misdemeanor charge of operating a vehicle without reasonable control.
“The driver stated he doesn’t remember anything for approximately one mile before the bus ran off the road, ” the police report stated, according to the story. “When he regained consciousness, the bus was on its side.”
Garrett was ordered by an Ohio court in 2015 to participate in an overnight sleep study which later “confirmed that the driver had moderate to severe sleep apnea,” according to the plaintiff’s lawsuit.
The five passengers who were injured and who filed the lawsuit received neck and back injuries as well as compound bone fractures in the crash, the story reported. The victims were from Florida, Michigan and Tennessee.
When the crash occurred, the bus driver had not yet undergone sleep apnea testing that was recommended to Greyhound a month before the crash by a U.S. Department of Transportation medical examiner based on his large physical size and medical history, according to a March 9 story by Law360. “Despite these warnings, Greyhound never had the driver tested for sleep apnea and claimed, instead, that the driver lost consciousness after choking on a sip of coffee while driving the bus,” the plaintiff’s attorneys told Law360.
These kinds of tragic legal cases occur every day when innocent victims are severely hurt or killed in vehicle crashes through no fault of their own due to the actions, inattentiveness or indifference of others. That’s why it is critical to have a legal team on your side that uncovers every fact to bolster your case and maximize your damage award.
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