Georgia Woman Hit by Tree Limb Awarded $12 Million for Injuries

August 27, 2013

  • August 27, 2013 at 10:55 am
    Whodathunkit? says:
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    They probably could have cut them down for less than $12mil, but I guess that’s not an option either. Rock and a hard place?

  • August 27, 2013 at 1:16 pm
    Why says:
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    Although I certainly feel sorry for this woman as well if the city did not have prior notice of the limbs impending failure how can they be held liable for this? What next I tripped over the curb so the city should have known that I would do that and put ramps everywhere? When will the stupidity of these verdicts end?

    • August 27, 2013 at 4:26 pm
      Jon says:
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      That’s the big question.

      Unfortunately, as is normal for IJ stories like this, they do not provide enough information surrounding the loss to give us the whole story.

      They just like the $12M settlement for tree limb” headline.

  • August 27, 2013 at 1:49 pm
    Huh! says:
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    The $12 Mil certainly seems excessive. I hope it goes to paying off medical expense rather than new toys such as a yacht. If the city is consistently providing maintenance (and it appears they are), then the accident is an “act of God” and blame should not be shifted elsewhere.

    • August 27, 2013 at 2:46 pm
      D says:
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      Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

      • August 28, 2013 at 12:56 pm
        Vern says:
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        Yes, that is a good point. It is only insurance money – not the real thing. Why stop at 12MM? They should double it.

    • August 27, 2013 at 4:28 pm
      Jon says:
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      With an amputation, brain injury, and traumatic pelvic injury–emergent medical services, plus additional medical costs and rehabilitative costs would be excessive.

      She may not net a whole lot of money after all the bills are paid.

      • September 15, 2013 at 12:29 pm
        required says:
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        You’re probably right. That’s a lot of money that will probably equalize the med expenses. But…it’s still a TREE growing randomly out there, somewhere. We should cover the expenses of recovery we can’t generalize from there. At all.

  • August 27, 2013 at 1:59 pm
    Bernie says:
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    So how do you tell a safe tree from a unsafe tree? Sure is good to second guess folks.

  • August 27, 2013 at 2:02 pm
    Retired UW says:
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    Immunity doctrine will prevail in appeal, probably limit it to $250K.

    • August 27, 2013 at 2:59 pm
      Integrity Matters says:
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      GA Statute is $500K, I believe, unless they purchased higher limits. I would think that Savannah would have self-insured a good portion of their GL exposure.

  • August 27, 2013 at 2:37 pm
    Vickie says:
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    Leg and pelvis? I would think if you lost your pelvis you would lose both legs????

    Guess the city (everywher) should inspect trees more frequently. Weekly?

    Seriously where does it end? Sometimes bad things happen and NO ONE is responsible. They JUST HAPPEN!!!

    • September 15, 2013 at 12:30 pm
      required says:
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      “Sometimes bad things happen and NO ONE is responsible. They JUST HAPPEN!!!”

      Yep. That’s the entire gist of the thing.

      • September 16, 2013 at 4:57 pm
        Agent says:
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        The mindset is to try to hold someone responsible even if there is no one to blame. Lawyers just love this kind of thing so they can browbeat a settlement and collect their fee. I know a few lawyers that I wouldn’t mind a tree falling on.

  • August 27, 2013 at 3:31 pm
    sl says:
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    It took my city 2 years to trim my trees after I notified them of the need. I tried to employ a tree trimming service and pay myself..but the contractors are not allowed to work on city trees. Luckily nothing happened during the 2 year interim – but if it had the city would definitely be in the loop of litigation.
    There are not enough details in this article to make judgment one way or the other on the situation. The award 12M with 31 year brain injured…could be right on or excessive. Again not enough information to make judgment. Do know that a well documented tree inspection plan and trimming program for the city would cost a lot less than 12M.

  • August 27, 2013 at 4:10 pm
    Agent says:
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    In a lot of jurisdictions around the country, if a tree is green and growing and an Act of God causes it to fall, there is no liability for the property owner. If it is dead, leaning etc, and the owner does nothing and it falls, then liability kicks in. There is not enough info in this article to tell one way or the other.

    My next question is food for thought. Can an Atheist file a claim for “Acts of God”? Hmm!

    • August 27, 2013 at 6:12 pm
      Blondie2 says:
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      I believe it’s now called “Acts of Nature”.

  • August 28, 2013 at 2:39 pm
    CB says:
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    Found a little more info on this story, but the $12M still seems quite excessive.
    http://savannahnow.com/column/2013-08-24/barton-city-out-limb

  • August 28, 2013 at 5:31 pm
    hmm says:
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    All cities need to cut down all trees in order to prevent these things from happening.

    • August 29, 2013 at 10:35 am
      Agent says:
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      A bit excessive hmm! Trees are beautiful, provide shade in the summer, give off a lot of oxygen which helps the environment. This is a very isolated case. I live in a city with a lot of trees and I don’t think they have ever had a problem before. Private property owners do have a responsibility to watch their trees and take them down or trim them when they get diseased or die. I have taken down 8 trees in my yard in the past 20 years.

    • August 29, 2013 at 11:18 am
      jw says:
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      Apparently, not everyone gets sarcasm.



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