In January 2004, SH was driving a Subaru Wagon westbound on State Route 2 in Monroe, Washington. He was driving the speed limit of 60 mph. The driver of another vehicle, JW, was traveling in the opposite direction and veered into SH's lane, causing a head-on collision. The resulting impact occurred at 60 mph.
The impact was severe. The damage to SH's vehicle was substantial and the car was ultimately declared a total loss.
JW had been drinking when the collision occurred. He submitted to a portable breath test (PBT). JW was then arrested at the scene for DUI. The investigating officer determined that JW was intoxicated and that he caused the collision when he crossed the center line and entered into SH's lane.
Washington law provides that drivers on the road have the duty to exercise ordinary care and avoid causing a collision. See RCW 46.61.445 and Washington Pattern Jury Instruction (WPI) 70.01. JW was negligent when he crossed the center line and slammed into SH's vehicle while legally intoxicated.
Additionally, SH sustained the following personal injuries in this accident:
- Right elbow contusion following motor vehicle collision
- Right shoulder contusion following motor vehicle collision
- Left knee contusion/abrasion following motor vehicle collision
- Cervical Sprain
- Lumbosacral Sprain
- Right shoulder sprain/strain
- Ulnar nerve neuralpraxia with permanent loss of sensation in the right fifth finger
- Knee contusion with residual patella fenoral program
- Impairment Rating: 3.5% upper extremity = 2% whole person impairment
SH is 29 years old and lives in Snohomish, Washington. For employment, he holds both a winter seasonal position and a part time construction position. In his spare time, SH enjoys outdoor sports, including snow boarding, skiing, hiking, mountain biking and water sports.
SH suffered considerable loss of enjoyment of life by having to experience constant and continuous pain and discomfort as a result of his injuries. SH was unable to work throughout the rest of the season at his seasonal job. SH was also unable to continue with his normal activities. He has been unable to snowboard or ski at all this season due to the pain in his left knee. He was incapable of performing various projects around the house and participating in other leisure activities.
To help him pursue reimbursment for the expenses stemming from his car accident, injuries and resulting treatment, SH hired Seattle personal injury attorney Christopher Davis. An experienced car accident lawyer, Mr. Davis was able to identify several factors that supported a substantial "loss of enjoyment of life" damage claim. Mr. Davis has been historically successful working with Zurich North America Claims representatives in the acquisition of fair and acceptable reimbursment for his clients.