Steinger, Greene & Feiner, a leading personal injury law firm, is proud to announce a significant victory for our client. Port St. Lucie attorneys Alfred R. Bell, Jr. and David Mitchell, partners of Steinger, Greene & Feiner, won a $1.58 million verdict before St. Lucie County Circuit Court Judge.
Waste Pro had instructed its driver to drive its 40,700-pound (empty) garbage truck through three posted Do Not Enter signs on a roadway in an ungated, residential community in Tradition. On May 25, 2018, our client was backing out of his driveway when his vehicle collided with a Waste Pro garbage truck that was unexpectedly driving the wrong way. The court ruled that Port St. Lucie police could not enforce traffic signs, including the “do not enter” signs where the crash occurred. Additionally, the court instructed the jury that the signs in question were not enforceable. Waste Pro denied liability, arguing that the signs were erected improperly, that Waste Pro had been driving in this direction down this road for years before the crash, and that our client should have been aware of that. Waste Pro further argued that our client was responsible for causing the crash due to negligently backing out of his driveway without ensuring there were no vehicles approaching.
Attorneys Bell and Mitchell argued that every driver must be able to rely upon other drivers to follow posted traffic signs, that the roadway was only wide enough for one-way traffic, and that it was unreasonable for the Waste Pro driver to disregard the signs and drive against the expected flow of traffic. Common sense prevailed. The jury found that the Waste Pro driver was negligent.
Waste Pro also argued that our client suffered no loss, injury, or damages at all as a result of the crash. The defendant argued that our client’s evaluation at the Emergency Room immediately after the crash was the result of a long-standing and progressively worsening pre-existing conditions. However, Bell’s team proved that he suffered permanent back and neck injuries from the crash, which were different from his pre-existing condition, and that the medical treatment was the result of the crash. They also proved that, despite successful back surgery, our client will need extensive medical care and management for the rest of his life as a result of the crash.
After everything they went through, we received a pre-trial settlement offer of only $30,000 and $40,000, respectively. Ultimately, after the five-day trial, Steinger, Greene & Feiner won a $1.58 million verdict for our client.
Ultimately, the jury concluded that Waste Pro of Florida, Inc. was 60% responsible for the crash, as they were driving the wrong way on a one-way street, and that negligence was a legal cause of our client’s injuries and damages.
The verdict is a significant win and is a testament to the firm’s dedication to our clients.
CASE FAST FACT
- Date of Verdict: January 26, 2024
- Location: Port St. Lucie, Florida
- Case Type: Automobile Accident
- Pre-Trial Offer: $40,000
- Verdict: $1.58 million verdict with defendant determined to be 60% fault