A federal jury in Kansas jury awarded $23.5 million to a man who was severely injured in a truck accident in New Mexico on Route 54 near Tucumcari with a truck driver who tested positive for methamphetamine. Jurors found that the driver for Swift Transportation was 65% responsible for the accident that left Plaintiff with major spinal cord injuries. U.S. District Judge Monti Belot subsequently reduced the actual award consistent with New Mexico comparative negligence law to nearly $15.3 million.
This was a very serious injury case – the defendant has $5 million in past and future medical bills. A big as this case was, it is not the biggest verdict the defendant Swift Transportation has taken in the even the last year. Last December, an Arizona jury awarded $36.5 million to the family of a man killed in a collision with another one of its trucks.
There is a story on the verdict in the Wichita Eagle.