Family of pensioner seriously injured by lorry receives damages

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Family of pensioner seriously injured by lorry receives damages

18th March 2011

The family of a pensioner who was left seriously injured after being knocked down whilst shopping has received £50,000 in compensation, just six months after she died.

The victim, who was in her 80s, was crossing a road when a large lorry set off and ran her over, fracturing her arm and literally tearing the skin from both of her legs.

Polly Herbert, a serious injury specialist with Fentons Solicitors LLP - who represented the victim - said she was lucky to have escaped the incident in 2009 with her life.

"My client told me how said she had been making her way to a store on the other side of the road," said Polly. "When she got to the pavement she could see a large lorry parked opposite, and she remembered the driver being out of his cab talking to someone standing next to a car. There was no other traffic around, and even though it was a one-way street she still checked both directions to make sure it was clear."

Polly said that as her client stepped out into the road, she noticed the lorry driver continuing to talk with the other man as he got into the cab of his vehicle. She was about half way across the road when she was struck by the lorry.

"She remembered screaming loudly, and her shopping trolley being thrown away from her," said Polly. "She described how 'her handbag went one way and her walking stick went the other'. The next thing she remembered was someone coming up to place their coat over her as she lay in the road."

"Initially the doctors advised her family that she may not survive," said Polly, a partner with the firm. "She suffered a serious de-gloving injury to her right and left legs, where the skin is effectively torn from the body. Both legs required skin grafts, she suffered a broken right arm and a variety of other contusions and injuries.

"Before the incident she was independent, mobile and living in her own home," said Polly. "But due to the serious nature of the injuries she needed a lot of care following her discharge from hospital."

The defendant was acquitted of any wrongdoing at a criminal prosecution last year, and the defendant's insurers issued a full denial of liability for the pensioner's injuries almost immediately after that.

"My client sadly died just two weeks later, in July 2010," said Polly. "The cause of death was given as heart failure, with the serious injuries she sustained in the incident listed as a secondary cause."

Polly then took on the case on behalf of her client's estate, with her son acting as executor. "This lady was put through a tremendous ordeal in the last 18 months of her life, and it was only fair that she and her family received recognition for what she had gone through and the compensation to which she was entitled," said Polly.

"Sadly she passed away before she was able to receive that compensation or enjoy the piece of mind that comes with a successful end to a case, but we hope the damages awarded to her estate will help the family pay for the funeral expenses and has given them some comfort in that her tragic injuries and death have not just been allowed to be forgotten.

"Personally, I will always remember this lady as a lovely woman who brought a smile to everyone she met and I feel privileged that I have been able to help her family."

How can Fentons Solicitors help?
Fentons has a specialist department experienced in handling claims relating to serious road accidents.

If you think that you have a case or require further information, contact Fentons on 0800 019 1297 or fill in the online claims questionnaire.