Jurors in a St. Louis federal court have handed down a more than $2 million dollar decision to a truck driver as a result of injuries he received while unloading.
Gregory Baird of Oklahoma was unloading his rig in late 2007 when a box weighing nearly 40 pounds fell on his head, leaving him unconscious along with neck and back injuries. It happened inside the trailer, in dark conditions, while at the Dollar General store in Troy, Mich.
The verdict in U.S. District Court was for $4.6 million to Baird and $250,000 to his wife, but the jury also determined he was 52% at fault, reducing the amount proportionally.
In an interview with Baird’s attorney, John D. Anderson, the St. Louis Post Dispatch reports jurors believed the trucker should have used some light and not unloaded in the dark.
Anderson told the paper that Baird is still suffering from injuries he received in the mishap.
During the trail, which took 11 days, 10 doctors testified on behalf of Dollar General that Baird was not injured. Dollar General also presented testimony that Baird could have unloaded the next day in the light, but Anderson said his client had just started a new job with his employer, Hogan Trucking, and said if he had waited to unload he would have been fired.
The suit was originally filed in 2011.
Anderson says Baird has filed for workers’ compensation benefits but has never been paid.
Dollar General has yet to publicly comment on the outcome, including whether or not it will appeal.