Tractor-Trailor Crushed Car

NE Missouri Case Filed in Jackson County

$725,000 Settlement

A Kahoka, Mo., man filed suit in Jackson County against the driver of a tractor-trailer who broadsided his car in northeast Missouri.

During a sales call in October 2000, Kenneth Sherrill, 46, was driving east on Route 6 in Lewis County. He slowed to make a left hand turn into his customer’s driveway when a tractor-trailer owned by Harold Wood Trucking drove up behind him. As Sherrill turned left, the driver attempted to pass Sherrill’s car on the left side. His tractor trailer struck Sherrill’s car on the driver’s side, crushing Sherrill inside.

Sherrill suffered multiple fractures in his pelvis and sacrum, as well as a dislocated hip, a broken left femur and broken ribs. He eventually underwent a total hip replacement. Sherrill was unable to work for a total of nine months because of the accident and the resulting surgery.

Sherrill filed suit in Jackson County under the motor carrier venue statute, Sect. 508.070, which provides: “Suit may be brought against any motor carrier … in any county where the cause of action may arise, in any town or county where the motor carrier operates, or judicial circuit where the cause of action accrued, or where the defendant maintains an office or agent … .”

Wood argued that Sherrill failed to keep a careful lookout and suddenly slowed his vehicle.

The parties settled for $725,000 after taking into account a workers’ compensation subrogation lien.

Type of Action: Automobile accident

Type of Injuries: Multiple fractures of pelvis and sacrum, left femur fracture, dislocation of left hip, left scapula and clavicle fracture

Court/Case Number/Date: Jackson County Circuit Court/01CV219136/Jan. 24, 2003

Caption: Sherrill v. Wood

Judge, Jury or ADR: Jury

Name of Judge: Marco Roldan

Special Damages: $118,919 medical expense, $50,000 lost wages

Verdict or Settlement: $725,000 settlement

Allocation of Fault: N/A

Last Offer: N/A

Last Demand: N/A

Attorneys for Plaintiff: Jay Benson, Kirksville

Insurance Carrier: Auto-Owners Insurance Company

Plaintiff’s Experts: Dr. Curtis Burton, Hannibal (orthopedic surgeon); Michael McCort, Lafayette, Colo. (accident reconstructionist); Mary Titterington, Prairie Village, Kan. (vocational consultant); John O. Ward, Prairie Village, Kan. (economist); Dr. Michael Watson, Springfield, Ill. (orthopedic surgeon)

Defendant’s Experts: None

Story taken from Missouri Lawyers Weekly. Vol. 17, No. 26. June 30, 2003, pp. 6.