Court of Claims Awards Family Nearly $4 Million
The Ohio Department of Transportation will pay a New Concord family nearly $4 million after the Court of Claims of Ohio on Tuesday finalized a damages judgment in the family’s favor.
The family brought the wrongful death and negligence claims after Traci Reed was killed and her son Connor was injured when a tree fell and struck their vehicle on State Route 83 in Muskingum County the day after Christmas in 2008. Reed’s vehicle traveled off the western edge of the road and struck several more trees and fence before coming to a stop.
In his February 1, 2010 complaint, Traci’s widower Michael Reed stated that ODOT was aware of the “dangerous condition of the eroding bank” and leaning trees and that the tree that struck Traci’s car “was likely to fall directly upon State Route 83.” Michael Reed also claimed that ODOT was aware that trees had fallen across the roadway previously in the same area.
The $3,996,135.23 final amount was reduced from the original $4,364,735 judgment because an Ohio law provides that the probate court reduces the amount after accounting for collateral benefits already received by the family.
The Court of Claims is given original jurisdiction to hear and determine all civil actions filed against the State of Ohio and its agencies.
To access information on other cases visit the Court of Claims website.
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