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Contra Costa County to Pay $11.7 Million to Crash Victim’s Family

CONTRA COSTA COUNTY – In personal injury news, the Contra Costa Timesreported a jury has ordered Contra Costa County to pay $11.7 million in damages to the family of William Tindall, 56, of Clayton, who died in an August 20, 2008 crash on Marsh Creek Road in Brentwood. Tindall’s accident was one of 15 serious collisions that occurred on the road during the County’s resurfacing project.

According to the Contra Costa Times, Tindall had been on his way to work when he stopped to help an Army reservist whose vehicle had overturned on a curve that was covered with gravel. After he exited his vehicle, he was struck by an out-of-control vehicle. Evidence was presented at trial that many vehicles lost control during the resurfacing work, causing a number of collisions. The county allegedly had erected 25 mph speed limit signs, but had failed to cover up the more prominent permanent speed limit signs, as per state guidelines. The county also kept excess gravel in the roadway in lieu of industry standards of sweeping it at the end of the day.

According to the story in the Contra Costa Times, during the month long trial, a county employee testified that following Tindall’s death, sweeping excess gravel and covering speed limit signs became a standard practice during its resurfacing projects. The award included $1.5 million in economic damages and $10.2 million in emotional pain and suffering for Tindall’s widow and daughter.

Sources: Contra Costa Times