Case details

Elder struck by truck claimed ankle and face injuries





Result type

Not present

ankle, face, facial laceration, fracture, leg, nose
On Jan. 24, 2020, claimant Richard Bothman, 90, was walking toward his vehicle at a Sprouts grocery store parking lot, in Campbell, when he was struck by a truck operated by Joseph Levine. The back tire of Levine’s vehicle then ran over Bothman’s legs, as the truck continued forward. Bothman sustained to his face, an elbow, an ankle and both legs. In lieu of filing a lawsuit, Bothman sought direct recovery from Levine’s insurance provider, Allstate Northbrook Indemnity Co., a subsidiary of Allstate Insurance Co. Bothman alleged that the tortfeasor, Levine, was negligent in the operation of the truck. Bothman’s counsel contended that Levine was driving approximately 5 to 10 mph in the parking lot when the accident occurred. Counsel noted that Levine was cited with “failure to yield to a pedestrian” by police investigators who were called to the scene and that Levine was listed as the primary factor in the crash on the Traffic Collision Report. Levine claimed that he continued driving after the accident because, due to the height of his truck, he was unaware that he knocked Bothman to the ground. He also claimed that he continued driving until he noticed someone yelling, which caused him to look into his rearview mirror, where he saw people coming to Bothman’s aid. Levine stated that he pulled over and parked once he noticed what had happened. In addition, Levine’s claims adjuster noted that Levine was fully cooperative with the responding police investigators. Thus, liability was not contested., Bothman sustained mild facial lacerations and bruising, and lacerations to his left elbow. He also sustained fractures of the left ankle, including a minimally displaced medial malleolar fracture and a proximal to midshaft fracture of the left fibular without significant displacement. As a result of the ankle fractures, he suffered moderate soft tissue swelling and ankle effusion. Bothman was taken to a hospital, and the ankle fractures were revealed on X-ray imaging taken the next day. Following acute treatment at Santa Clara Medical Center, a Kaiser Permanente facility in Santa Clara, Bothman was placed in Valley House Rehabilitation Center, a Kaiser Permanente skilled nursing center in Santa Clara, where he remained for two weeks. He was then transferred to an assisted living facility to complete his rehabilitation and physical therapy before discharge home. Bothman claimed that, during his time at assisted living facility, he enjoyed daily visits from his adult children and his grandchildren, but that the visits came to an end on March 17, 2020, when California’s COVID-19 Stay-At-Home Order went into effect. From that point forward, Bothman was unable to visit with family and was isolated from his loved ones. Bothman’s counsel claimed that the isolation and separation from Bothman’s family due to COVID-19 was a major factor in assessing Bothman’s damages, the bulk of which were supported by his pre-injury activities and community involvement. While he was 90 years old, Bothman was completely independent, exercised regularly, and was heavily involved in local charities and community organizations. Bothman’s counsel claimed the accident completely halted Bothman’s active lifestyle. Given his advanced age, there was concern that he would never return to his pre-injury health and activity levels. However, Bothman was eventually able to return home and made a full recovery. Bothman sought recovery of $25,677 in past medical costs, which consisted of paid medical expenses and his rent at the assisted living facility. He also sought recovery of damages for his pain and suffering.
Matter not filed, CA

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