June 23, 2017 — A multi-million dollar settlement has been paid to the family of a woman who died in a horrific car accident with a guardrail that impaled her vehicle.
The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Sabrena Carrier, a 37 year-old woman who died after hitting the end of a guardrail along Highway 394 near Bountville, Tennessee.
The guardrail was equipped with an ET-Plus end-terminal, which has a U-shaped chute that is supposed to deflect the razor-sharp guardrail harmlessly away from oncoming vehicles. Instead, it impaled her car.
The bulk of the settlement was paid by Trinity Industries, manufacturer of the ET-Plus, but the State of Tennessee also paid a $20,000 settlement to her 14 year-old son, mother, and fiancée.
Tennessee Attorney General Herb Slattery said the amount is less than 1% of what Trinity paid to the family.
“The potential damages in this case in the the range of $2.5 million – $3.5 million, not including punitive damages (which would not affect the State obviously).”
Tennessee agreed to pay a settlement after witnesses testified that the guardrail had been damaged for months before the accident occurred, but it was never replaced.
The ET-Plus was removed from Tennessee’s list of approved highway products after October 2014, when a judge and jury in Texas ordered Trinity to pay $664 million for defrauding the government.
Trinity reduced the size of the U-shaped chute on the ET-Plus without telling the government or conducting necessary crash tests — saving money on materials, but possibly increasing the risk of the guardrails jamming up and impaling oncoming cars in head-on car accidents.
Do I have a Guardrail Accident Lawsuit?
The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently accepting guardrail induced injury cases in all 50 states. If you or somebody you know has been injured in a car accident with a guardrail, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. Please use the form below to contact our Product Liability Litigation Group or call toll free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.
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