Jury finds General Contractor Liable for $2.4 Million to Family of Steelworker Killed on Project
Marion County, Florida, January 23, 2013 – A Marion County, Florida jury has awarded $2.4 million to the wife and two young children of a steel erector killed while working on the National Parts Depot expansion project in Ocala on January 15, 2010. After a nine-day trial, they jury returned a verdict against R.L. Haines Construction, LLC, the general contractor for the project, finding that R.L. Haines engaged in conduct which it knew was virtually certain to result in the death or injury of Victor Lizarraga.
Mr. Lizarraga was an employee of a subcontractor on the project, Metal-Bilt Construction, and was killed instantly when a 33-foot tall steel column fell on him. The column which fell had been erected earlier that morning and was secured to a concrete slab with four anchor bolts previously installed by a different R.L. Haines subcontractor. The anchor bolts were installed into the concrete slab with a special epoxy adhesive that required a cure time to elapse before any steel could be erected on the bolts. Mr. Lizarraga’s survivors presented evidence at trial that R.L. Haines was aware that the epoxy adhesive cure time had not elapsed before instructing Metal-Bilt to begin erecting steel columns, and the column that killed Mr. Lizarraga fell as a result. In awarding the damages, the jury also found R.L. Haines Construction deliberately concealed or misrepresented the known danger.
Kirwin Norris, P.A. is pleased to have represented the Plaintiff in this matter.
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