The following is an extract from a report in The National Edition of Verdict Search, Vol. 8 Issue 6, June 2009.
Our Partner, Ben B. Rubinowitz represented the plaintiffs, Gloria Aguilar and Aristides Aguilar.
On Nov. 4, 2005, plaintiff Gloria Aguilar, 45, a homemaker and part-time housecleaner, was struck by a New York City Transit Authority bus. The incident occurred on West 50th Street, alongside its intersection at 10th Avenue, in Manhattan. Aguilar sustained injuries of her arms, head, legs and torso. Aguilar sued the bus’s driver, Andrew Monaco, and the bus’s operator, the New York City Transit Authority. Aguilar alleged that Monaco was negligent in his operation of the bus. She further alleged that the New York City Transit Authority was vicariously liable for Monaco’s actions.
Aguilar’s left leg was crushed by the bus’s front right tire. She also sustained an injury of her right leg and abrasions and road rash of her head, limbs and torso. She was placed in an ambulance, and she was transported to Bellevue Hospital Center, in Manhattan. Her left leg could not be saved, so it was amputated below the knee.
Aguilar subsequently developed an infection of the remaining portion of her left leg. As a result, she had to undergo surgeries that included further amputation of the leg. She ultimately lost her left knee and about four additional inches of the area above the knee. She wears a prosthetic device. Her hospitalization lasted two months, and she subsequently underwent orthopedic treatment. Aguilar claimed that she suffers residual damage of her legs’ nerves. She also claimed that she experiences “phantom” pain that seems to stem from the missing portion of her left leg. She further claimed that she undergoes treatment of residual psychological conditions that include post-traumatic stress disorder and major depression. She contended that her disability prevents her resumption of work.
Aguilar’s life-care-planning expert opined that Aguilar must undergo lifelong physical therapy. He also opined that Aguilar’s prosthesis must be replaced every three to five years. Aguilar sought recovery of about $5.6 million for her future medical expenses. She also sought recovery of damages for her past and future pain and suffering. Her husband sought recovery of damages for his past and future loss of services and society.
This case was also reported in The New York Times.