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Borrelli v Prototech, Inc.

Motor Vehicle Litigation / January 12, 2023

Court/Case No: Wayne County Circuit Court/19-004457-NI

Tried/Argued Before: Judge

Demand: $605,000

Verdict: No-Cause

Name of Judge(s): Hon. Sheila Ann Gibson

Keys to the Case:

Defendant driver was driving in the middle of three lanes, with Plaintiff to his left and a fire truck to his right. Without  warning, the fire truck swerved toward Defendants’ truck to avoid another vehicle, causing the Defendant driver to  instinctively swerve away to avoid a collision. In doing so, Defendant contacted Plaintiff’s vehicle, causing it to strike the  median wall. The vehicles essentially attached and “rode“ the wall until they came to rest.

Plaintiff alleged negligent hiring/training/supervision by the employer and negligence by the driver in causing the accident.  Plaintiff claimed soft tissue neck and back injuries, as well as anxiety and depression as a result of the accident, causing  an inability for her to return to work.

Defendants raised the sudden emergency defense as to the driver and no showing of proximate cause as to the claims  against the employer. As for the claimed damages, the defense psychologist testified that Plaintiff’s psychological testing  results were normal, and the neurosurgical expert testified that there was no objective evidence of anything past initial  soft-tissue sprain/strain injuries which should have resolved within a period of weeks.

Plaintiff blackboarded $605,000.00 in past and future damages. The jury, however, never got to the issue of damages, and  returned a defense verdict of no cause for action, indicating that the fire truck created a sudden emergency that excused  the Defendant driver’s actions, and that there was nothing that the Defendant employer either did or failed to do that  contributed to the accident occurring.

Defense SW attorney(s) Involved in Case:


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