Practice Area: Wrongful Death
Outcome: confidential settlement
Description: Stephanie, her Mom, and her daughter (Crystal) got in the car to go shopping: Stephanie was in the front passenger seat of the Ford Escort, and Crystal was in a car seat in the back, behind Stephanie. While they were driving, they had to slow and pull to the right of the roadway because of approaching fire trucks. The car following the Escort did not slow, and rear ended the Escort at about 25 miles per hour. The impact caused moderate damage to the back of the car. However, the impact also broke the supports for the back of the seat that Stephanie was sitting in. Her momentum threw Stephanie's head and shoulders backward, into Crystal, striking Crystal with such force that Crystal's aorta was torn and she bled to death. Ford engineers knew about this frailty of their seats, and did little to nothing to strenghen the seat back supports to prevent this failure.