Jurors in Pennsylvania awarded $5.4 million to a man who suffered a severe traumatic brain injury after a bicycle accident caused by a purported road defect.
That damages award, according to The Legal Intelligencer, included $2.5 million for medical expenses and lost wages, as well as $2 million for pain and suffering and $1 million in damages to the plaintiff’s wife for loss of consortium. State law caps damages for civil litigation against government agencies at $250,000, but the total damages collected will be $500,000, since the plaintiff and his wife each will receive the maximum amount for their individual claims.
According to court records of the incident, the plaintiff was riding his bicycle on the road when he hit a patch of road that was reportedly uneven. This, his attorneys would later argue, constituted a dangerous defect in the road, causing him to be ejected from his bicycle and land on his head. In addition to a broken vertebra and broken ribs, the plaintiff suffered brain damage leading to post-traumatic seizure disorder. This was despite the fact he was wearing a bicycle helmet. Since his initial treatment, he’s been hospitalized again numerous times due to seizure-related injuries.