Motorcyclist collides into pick-up making illegal u-turn
Personal Injury
Contra Costa County Superior Court
Settlement
$10,500,000

On May 11, 2017, Christopher Lanham (49 yrs old) was riding his motorcycle to work when defendant's pickup truck made an illegal u-turn in front of him.  Mr. Lanham was unable to stop in time and struck the pickup with his motorcycle.  Mr. Lanham was wearing a non-DOT approved, half shell helmet, that was knocked off in the collision.  He was taken by ambulance to the hospital where he was diagnosed with facial fractures and a traumatic brain injury.  His orthopedic injuries included a left brachial plexus injury, left open distal radius and ulnar fractures, fractures of the transverse process of C3 through Tl, and multiple lacerations.

 

The defendant truck driver was driving in the course and scope of employment for a Texas-based Oil & Gas Company.  Defendants disputed liability and alleged comparative fault.  Defendants contended comparative fault based on the fact that Mr. Lanham was carrying a meth pipe and vial on him, tested positive for methamphetamines at the hospital and was not wearing appropriate head gear. Mr. Lanham’s history was remarkable for chronic methamphetamine use and a prior felony conviction.

   

Mr. Lanham lives in Martinez, California with his wife, Nicole Lanham, and they have no children. Mr. Lanham was an Operations Manager for a company that designs and manufactures abrasive blasting systems and equipment, making about $80,000 per year. Mr. Lanham has not returned to work, but intends to do so in either a limited capacity or in some other field. Mrs. Lanham made a claim for loss of consortium. If Plaintiff did not return to work, his future unmitigated loss of earnings totaled about $1,500,000.  His past medical bills were in excess of $800,000 and future medical care was per Plaintiff between $1,000,000 and $1,500,000. 

 

The matter settled at Mediation for $10,500,000. 

 

Plaintiffs’ Experts: Raymond Kelly, PhD (Toxicology); Thomas G. Sampson, MD (Orthopedics); Fernando G. Miranda, MD (Neurology); Jerome A. Barakos, MD (Radiology); Dawn A. Osterweil, Ph.D. (Neuropsychology); Alex Barchuk, MD (Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation); Carol Hyland, MA, MS, CLCP, CDMS (Vocational Rehabilitation and Life Care Planning); Robert W. Johnson (Economics)

 

Defendants’ Experts: Alan C. Donelson, PhD (Toxicology); Thomas J. Ayres, PhD (Human Factors); James L. Chen, MD (Orthopedics); Mark H. Strassberg, MD (Neurology); Joanna L. Berg, Ph.D. (Neuropsychology), Louis Cheng, PhD (Biomechanics/Accident Reconstruction), Dawn Cook, RN, CLCP, CNLCP (Life Care Planning),  Eugene Van De Bittner, PhD (Vocational Rehabilitation), Michael Diliberto (Economics)

 

Mediator:  Charles F. Hawkins, Esq., ADR Services, Inc.