Last month, a federal jury in San Francisco awarded Raymond Mariolle $11.4 million in damages for injuries sustained from a 2007 accident while driving a Volvo garbage truck for Waste Management in the San Francisco suburb of Livermore. The right-front wheel hub of the truck fractured, causing the wheel to fall off. Mariolle suffered a spinal injury from the accident and was debilitated for 10 months following the accident. In a release from law firm Boxer & Gerson Attorneys at Law, LLP, the plaintiffs claim that Mariolle was unable to work in any capacity by August 2010.

The companies named in the suit include Consolidated Metco (ConMet), the manufacturers of the wheel hubs, Wittke Manufacturing, the company which modified the truck for sanitation duty, Volvo Truck and Waste Management. The main allegation of the suit was that the rated capacity of the wheel hubs was overrated, causing the trucks to be loaded beyond the safe capacity of the hubs and that neither ConMet nor Volvo Truck took action to notify the public or owners of the affected trucks of the design flaw.

The $11.4 million award includes $2.4 million for future medical expenses and loss of earning capacity plus $7.5 million for pain and suffering.

A spokesperson for Volvo Truck declined to comment on the outcome of the case.

Source: Boxer & Gerson, Attorneys at Law, LLP