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Texting trolley accident results in $1.2 million jury verdict

A Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority trolley driver admitted to texting while driving, thereby causing an accident in which nearly 50 people were hospitalized with injuries. There were additional people injured who did not require hospitalization.

One of those who suffered an injury in the public transportation accident, was a woman who hurt her neck and was unable to return to work after the accident. She was recently awarded $1.2 million in a civil lawsuit jury verdict.

The accident took place on the Green Line in 2009. Apparently the MBTA trolley operator was texting his girlfriend and ran into the back of another trolley, causing many injuries. The woman in the recent civil lawsuit claims she was unable to return to her job at Delta Airlines. It was not reported what type of job she held, and why she couldn't return to work other than she suffered a neck injury.

There have been 24 other lawsuits after the trolley crash and nine of those cases have been settled with the MBTA. The reported average settlement amount was $31,000 -- considerably less than the $1.2 million. MBTA has indicated that it will appeal the Suffolk County jury's decision.

According to the MBTA's website, riding the "T" is safe. A safety program assures riders that the stations, busses, subways, commuter rails and boats are all inspected on a regular basis to make certain that riding the T is safe. Of course none of those safety measures would have done anything to prevent the trolley driver from texting his girlfriend.

Source: Boston Herald, "Passenger hurt in Boston trolley crash wins $1.2M," June 26, 2012

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