TRI-MET Abrupt Stop Verdict

Humphrey v. Tri-Met, Multnomah County Case No. 14CV20394

Plaintiff Humphrey boarded a Tri-Met bus and was walking towards a seat when the bus began moving and then made an abrupt stop for a vehicle making a turn in front of the bus. The stop caused Humphrey, who was holding an overhead strap, to swing and land on a seated passenger. Humphrey settled her negligence claims against the driver who turned in front of the bus and proceeded to trial only against Tri-Met. She claimed that the Tri-Met driver was negligent for speeding, entering traffic before passengers were seated and braking too abruptly. She claimed disc injuries to her neck which required fusion surgery. She sought $83,304.56 for past medical expenses and $400,000 for non-economic damages.

Defendant Tri-Met denied liability and claimed that Humphrey’s injuries were the result of her own negligence and the negligence of the settling driver who turned in front of the bus. They argued that Humphrey was negligent for failing to secure herself or take an available seat. They claimed that the settling driver was also at fault for making an unsafe right turn without signaling.

Plaintiff’s Counsel – James F. Halley

Defense Counsel – Michael Shin

Verdict – $15,500.00.

The jury returned a verdict of $155,000 but apportioned 90% fault to the settling driver and only 10% to Tri-Met. Under ORS 31.610 the judgment against Tri-Met was reduced by 90% to $15,500.00

Date – April 25, 2017

May 9, 2017

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