Every so often a life-altering event occurs that makes people think: What would I do in a similar situation? The death of a family member is always a shock to the survivors and everyone involved can be affected a different way. As a Baltimore automobile accident attorney and Maryland personal injury lawyer, I understand that reaching a settlement that will best help the victim’s family is one of the most important goals in a wrongful death suit.
Not only medical costs, but lost wages and other financial matters left in the wake of an untimely death are all concerns for the surviving family members. A recent wrongful death suit was settled, according to news reports, leaving the family of the victim with only $100,000 for the apparent loss of a husband and provider.
Based on court records, the family of 57-year-old John Short accepted the $100,000 limit payable by another driver’s insurance company in the case of a fatal crash on the Bay Bridge back a couple of years ago. According to reports, Short died on August 10, 2008, when he steered his semi tractor-trailer rig off the bridge as he tried to avoid hitting an oncoming vehicle driven by 19-year-old Candy Baldwin.
Baldwin had admitted to police that she fell asleep at the wheel. A photo on the young woman’s MySpace page allegedly showed her with a bottle of liquor behind the wheel of a car, which apparently prompted police to look into whether or not the woman was drunk at the time of crash.
However, after a lengthy police investigation, Baldwin was ultimately charged only with lesser traffic offenses. Two years later, she is married and living in Alaska. The recent death of her father, according to the woman’s attorney, left her with no inheritance and no independent assets.
According to news reports, that 2008 crash raised new concerns about the stability of the safety barriers along the four-mile scenic bridge, which is a critical connection between Maryland’s eastern and western shores. Although attorneys for Short’s family claimed that the bolts supporting the bridge’s protective barriers failed to function correctly, that suit was eventually dropped.
100K settlement reached in fatal Bay Bridge crash, WTOP.com, September 22, 2010