Jury Awards $19 Million Verdict to Truck Driver related to a construction accident

The Case

Jack Richmond, a 17-year veteran truck driver employed by Lift Works was delivering an aerial lift to a construction site in Chicago, Illinois. While unloading the aerial lift from a flat-bed truck, the winch cable hook disconnected from the aerial lift and the aerial lift slid off the bed of the truck crushing the plaintiff. 

Mr. Richmond suffered multiple fractures and serious injuries to his back, pelvis and right knee which included vertebral and compression fractures, a spinous process fracture, small fractures of the sacral spine, and diastases of the pubic symphysis.

In-Depth Look

CHICAGO, IL – On June 13, 2022, 12 jurors unanimously agreed to award a $18,912,952 verdict to a 42-year-old truck driver. Clifford W. Horwitz and Michael D. Carter, Jr., partners at Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates, tried the case on behalf of Mr. Jack Richmond who was crushed by an aerial lift when it detached from a cable while he was unloading it from a flatbed truck.

Prior to the incident, the plaintiff’s employer had the defendant remove the winch cable hook and replace it with a smaller hook. The truck’s original winch cable hook had a safety latch. The new smaller hook that the defendant, E. Hoffman, Inc, a maintenance company, attached to the winch cable did not have a safety latch. 

We demonstrated that E. Hoffman did not train its mechanic, did not provide its mechanics with manuals from which to do their work and that their mechanics did not refer to manuals, manufacturer’s instructions or warnings.  We demonstrated that E. Hoffman, Inc. violated the manufacturer’s instructions and ASME rules.

Defendant’s offer was $50,000.00 before trial and then $100,000,00 during trial.  After defendant called its final witness, they withdrew the offer.    As defendant has insufficient insurance to cover the entire verdict, we are now going to pursue bad faith litigation against the insurance company.

Our Attorneys Stand Up for Workers

Recently, the Illinois Jury Verdict Reporter has honored Clifford W. Horwitz, awarding him with the Plaintiff’s Achievement Award. This coveted award has only been awarded to 15 attorneys since the Jury Verdict Reporter was established over 55 years ago. To be considered an attorney must first win at least five jury verdicts in excess of $5,000,000.00. Since 2012, Cliff’s trial team at Horwitz Horwitz & Associates has secured record verdicts at an astounding rate – every two out of three cases that Cliff has tried resulted in record-setting jury verdicts. 

If you have been injured in a work accident, contact our dedicated Chicago personal injury lawyers at Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates today for a free consultation.