$1.91 Million Jury Verdict in Fatal Head-On Collision with Dump Truck

Jerry Troutwine, 46, was traveling eastbound on a two-lane local highway on a rainy and slushy morning. He was driving his employer’s vehicle.

Justin Nichols was traveling westbound in a dump truck filled with concrete when he lost control of his truck near a downhill curve. The truck’s brakes locked, and the truck crossed the centerline, colliding head-on with Troutwine’s vehicle.

Troutwine died as a result of his injuries. He had been a truck driver and mechanic earning almost $30,000 per year. Troutwine was survived by his wife and teenage daughter.

His estate sued the dump truck’s owner, its driver, Nichols, and his company alleging that Nichols had been speeding in poor conditions and chose not to control his truck.

The defendants argued that the sudden emergency doctrine precluded their liability. It was maintained that Troutwine was driving under the influence of opioids and marijuana and thus was at fault for this accident.

The Troutwine estate lawyers countered that Troutwine suffered from chronic back pain for more than ten years and that he was highly tolerant of opioids.

The jury signed a verdict for more than $1.91 million finding that Troutwine was 20% negligent but that his degree of fault was not the proximate cause of his death.

The attorneys successfully handling this case were Barry Conybeare, Nathanial Harrington and Matthew Conklin.

Troutwine v. Nichols, No. 16-430-CZ (Mich. Cir. Ct. Cass County).

Kreisman Law Offices has been handling truck accident lawsuits, wrongful death cases, car accident cases, motorcycle accidents, bicycle accidents, nursing home negligence lawsuits and traumatic brain injury cases for individuals, families and loved ones who have been injured, harmed or killed by the carelessness or negligence of another for more than 40 years in and around Chicago, Cook County and its surrounding areas, including Cicero, Joliet, Waukegan, North Riverside, Stickney, Summit, LaGrange, Countryside, Burbank, Bridgeview, Bedford Park, Oak Lawn, Evergreen Park, Palos Park, Crestwood, Forest Park, Blue Island, Calumet Park, Chicago (Morgan Park, Humboldt Park, Beverly, Roscoe Village, Calumet Heights, Pullman, South Deering, South Chicago, Greater Grand Crossing, Gage Park, West Elsdon, Garfield Ridge, Lower West Side, West Garfield Park, Wicker Park, Uptown, Lakeview, Lincoln Park), Harwood Heights, Norridge, Park Ridge, Des Plaines, Mount Prospect and Glencoe, Ill.

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