$6.47 Million Jury Verdict In Death of Driver Who Rear-Ended a Broken-Down Truck on a Busy Interstate Highway

Scott Stevenson, 52, was driving his utility van on a busy interstate highway when his vehicle rear-ended a broken-down truck that had been stopped in the middle lane for fourteen minutes.

Stevenson died from the injuries he sustained in the impact of the vehicles. He had been a self-employed plumber earning about $120,000 per year. Stevenson was survived by his wife and adult daughter.

The Stevenson family sued the truck driver, Richard Delcore, and Simpson Group Inc., which leased the truck and employed Delcore.

The Stevenson estate alleged a negligent failure to check the truck’s rear wheels for mechanical issues, failed to timely call 911 or call a dispatcher after the truck broke down. In addition, it was claimed that Delcore was negligent for choosing not to move the truck over to the shoulder of the road and to place warning triangles to alert oncoming vehicles of the disabled truck.

The Stevenson estate also claimed that the Simpson Group was liable for negligent hiring of Delcore, negligent training and supervision and because it chose not to enforce rules regarding safety inspections.

The defendants maintained that the break-down was sudden and unexpected and that the truck was surrounded by 70-mph traffic and had a locked rear wheel. This argument was made to claim that Delcore could not safely move his truck to the shoulder or some or other safer location. The defendants also argued that Stevenson had been distracted, which was a cause of the rear-end crash.

The jury signed a verdict in favor of Stevenson’s estate for more than $6.47 million. The jury apportioned liability at 60% to Delcore, 25% to the Simpson Group and 15% to Stevenson.

The attorneys successfully handling this case for the Stevenson family were Jeffrey T. Stewart and Tiffany R. Ellis.

At trial, the Stevenson attorneys presented an expert in accident reconstruction.

Stevenson v. Delcore, No. 2015-002128-NI (Mich. Cir. Ct. Wayne County).

Kreisman Law Offices has been handling catastrophic injury lawsuits, wrongful death cases, rear-end crash lawsuits, truck accident cases, motorcycle accident cases, bicycle accident cases and car accident 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 Blue Island, Robbins, Oak Forest, Arlington Heights, Brookfield, Kenilworth, Highland Park, Glencoe, Geneva, St. Charles, Skokie, Schaumburg, Schiller Park, Western Springs, Cicero, Des Plaines, Niles, Morton Grove, Chicago (North Park, Norwood Park, Old Town Triangle, Pill Hill, Pilsen, Printer’s Row, Prairie District, Ravenswood Gardens, South Chicago, Jackson Park Highlands, Humboldt Park, Gladstone Park, Gold Coast, East Garfield Park, DePaul University Area, Wrigleyville, Wildwood, Back of the Yards, Lincoln Square, Little Italy, Loyola Park, Lithuanian Plaza), Lemont, Lockport, Glenview, Fox River Grove and Dixmoor, Ill.

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