Lawyers USA in November, 2010 reported that an Atlantic City, New Jersey juryfound the Highway Authority dispatchers and State Police negligent in responding to a multi-car crash that severed a casino dealer’s leg. The victim, Janet Henedema, a 37 year old dealer at an Atlantic City casino, was driving home in the morning of December 4, 2005. At that time, the car skidded out of control on the Atlantic City expressway during a snow storm. She was hospitalized for 6 weeks, underwent multiple surgeries, and her right leg had to be amputated due to the accident.

What is so special about this case? The answer is the incredible amount of work that the injured party and her attorney did to convince the jury to give the award. Think about it. The defense obviously argued that the collision was the result of the weather. Their argument was how could they be responsible for the bad weather? They claimed that the unexpected bad weather caused the injuries to Ms. Henedema.

However, Ms. Henedema was able to establish that the radio dispatchers prioritize calls and the second highest priority is a traffic accident with injuries, that pose a potential traffic hazard. Lawyers USA reported the transportation authority dispatchers never told the State Troopers that the initial accident was a potential traffic hazard. They instead relayed the wrong information to the troopers, telling them that the accident was in the eastbound lanes, not the westbound lanes of the highway. Further, the dispatchers failed to notify the State Troopers that local townships offered to help.

The Plaintiff argued that if the authorities had instituted a traffic management plan, and not allowed people to come up the hill where the victim was injured, the road would have been effectively shut down. The question is how to convey that to the jury in a logical manner?