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Driver Awarded Damages for Soft Tissue Injuries

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Brent Adams
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A South Carolina resident, Mary Kathryn Powell was traveling down a busy highway when her Jeep was struck from behind. Ms. Powell was on Highway 93 near Clemson when a tractor-trailer driven by the Defendant John McKellar hit her.

Ms. Powell alleged that she slowed her vehicle after signaling with her blinker and that Mr. McKellar negligently crashed into the back of her Jeep. She said that Mr. McKellar was negligent in failing to maintain a proper lookout and maintain an assured distance from her.

Mr. McKellar claimed that the plaintiff’s own negligence contributed to the collision as well. The defendant argued that Ms. Powell passed the truck and then negligently pulled in front of the truck to make a turn into an apartment complex without the use of her blinker.

The injuries that Ms. Powell allegedly had were soft tissue cervical and lumbar injuries with significant residual pain and suffering. The plaintiff claimed about $13,800 in past medical expenses and also lost  income as a part-time tennis instructor. Ms. Powell also showed that she could have made over $580,000 as a part-time tennis instructor over her working lifetime.

On February 11th, 2010 the jury returned a verdict of $35,000 less 40% comparative negligence. The jury deliberated for 2.5 hours. 

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