Family Awarded $1.5M after Pembroke Woman Dropped by Ambulance Crew

A jury awarded $1.5 million to the family of a patient who died as the result of an injury she sustained after being dropped headfirst by an ambulance crew.

Barbara J. Grimes, 67, of Pembroke, Mass., was receiving dialysis treatment at Fresenius Medical Care in Plymouth on January 31, 2009. During the transport, American Medical Response EMTs Wesley Garber and Peter Crowell had rolled her onto a stretcher, which subsequently tipped over, causing Grimes to hit her head and suffer from a brain hemorrhage. Grimes tragically passed away five days after the incident due to the substantial injuries she sustained.

“This was an unnecessary death which should have been prevented by simple precautions. If the ambulance crew had only followed company safety policies regarding stretcher operation, it would not have toppled over. This needless death was easily preventable,” Marc Breakstone, the family’s attorney said in a comment.

AMR’s ambulance crew alleged that the incident, which occurred in the parking lot of the medical facility, occurred because of a defect with the stretcher. However upon inspection, no defect was ever found. “Their explanation was simply not believable and the jury rejected it squarely,” Breakstone said.

“Our family is haunted by this senseless loss. We are so thankful to the jury for seeing through the lies and deceptions of AMR, which treated our sister like a sack of discarded trash. After more than six years, the truth finally came out at trial,” said Grimes’ brother Peter Zacarelli Jr.

Wrongful Death and Medical Negligence

Losing a family member as the result of another person’s reckless or negligent behavior can be emotionally devastating. In addition to the emotional toll losing a loved one can take on your family, financial hardships may also occur. Damages can include lost earnings and financial support, the victim’s medical expenses and burial costs.

At the law offices of Altman & Altman, our team of attorneys understands just how life-altering a family death can be. We work diligently to help our clients affected by such tragedy recover financial damages as well as reasonable compensation for the loss of love, companionship and moral support given by their loved one. The kind of (and percentage amount) of recovery that each plaintiff may receive depends on their biological relationship to the deceased. Damage awards also include interest from the date that the person died.

While our team recognizes that no legal settlement or trial verdict will ever make up for the tragic loss of a loved one, our firm will can ensure your rights, benefits and legal remedies are protected and preserved. Our firm represents the surviving family members of victims who died in tragic accidents caused by the careless or reckless actions of another party. If someone you loved has died in a car accident, truck collision, bus crash, train collision, motorcycle accident, work accident, slip-and-fall accident, or because a doctor, a product manufacturer, a premise owner, or someone else was negligent, you and your family may be eligible for financial compensation. Call or email our office today to schedule an appointment with one of our Wrongful Death Attorneys. All initial consultations are free and confidential, and our attorneys are available around the clock to assist you with any of your case needs.


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