Settlement victory for pedestrian hit by lorry

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Settlement victory for pedestrian hit by lorry

4th February 2011

A woman in her sixties has received over £550,000 in compensation after she was dragged for approximately fifty metres under the wheels of an articulated lorry.

Katie Pendower, a catastrophic injuries specialist at Fentons Solicitors LLP, said: "My client was on her way to work just before 9pm on a busy late-night shopping night in central London. Worried she'd be late for work she ran across a red light at a junction adjoining Oxford Street and was struck by an articulated lorry making a wide-angle left turn."

The defendant, who had failed to indicate whilst making his turn, collided with the claimant, dragging her beneath his vehicle and continuing along the street oblivious to the fact the claimant was trapped underneath his rear wheels.

"My client was a metre and a half away from the kerb when she was pulled underneath the lorry's wheels like a rag-doll," said Katie, a partner with the firm. "The lorry continued to travel with my client lodged beneath its wheels for a considerable distance before frantic onlookers were finally able to attract his attention and stop the vehicle."

The claimant remembers speaking to a policewoman while she lay trapped and unable to move beneath the lorry before waking the next day in an intensive care unit with horrific injuries to her lower right leg and foot.

"My client was incredibly fortunate not to have lost her right leg," said Katie. "The lorry driver not only failed to indicate, he also failed to take into account his speed on the busiest shopping night of the week on the busiest street in the entire country, packed at the time with thousands of late-night shoppers and tourists.

The woman sustained severe degloving injuries to her lower right leg, with an extensive section of skin from her calf and foot being completely shorn from its underlying tissue, severing its blood supply. Her right ankle was pulverised and she received extensive crushing injuries including multiple fractures within her foot and ankle.

"The injuries were so severe that she remained in hospital for over five months, undergoing several operations as well as plastic surgery procedures and skin grafts," said Katie. "In addition, she also had to contend with contracting MRSA as a result of chest and wound infections she suffered following surgery.

"The ordeal my client has had to endure has been particularly harrowing," said Katie. "She continues to suffer considerable pain to this day and her injuries have understandably changed her previously active life completely beyond all recognition. Together with her settlement - which we hope will help her adjust to the enormous changes she has had to make - we were also able to secure interim payments as well as a personal injury trust to safeguard her benefits."

In January 2009 following lengthy negotiations, liability was admitted subject to a deduction of 20% in respect of contributory negligence. In December 2010, Katie settled the claim on behalf of her client for the gross sum of £551,487.55.

How can Fentons Solicitors help?

Fentons has a specialist department experienced in handling claims for victims of road traffic collisions.

If you think that you have a case or require further information contact Fentons on 0800 0191 297 or fill in the online claims questionnaire.