Monday, September 12, 2016

Texting while walking can be lucrative

Imagine this scenario:

In February 2011, in the great state of Georgia, you park your car behind a bucket truck surrounded by orange cones.

You duck under the extended arm of the truck, walk to an ATM machine, realize you forgot something, and duck under the arm again as you walk back to your car.  You retrieve the forgotten item, again duck under the arm and walk back to the ATM machine, transact your business, and head back to your car.

While you return to your car, you are engrossed in a text conversation and don't notice (1) the ladder/arm you've ducked under three times so far, and (2) that the bucket at the end of the arm has been lowered closer to the sidewalk.

You bonk your head on the ladder/arm, which results in a trip to the hospital and a slight concussion.

You do the American thing,  You sue the construction company.

In March 2016 [wow that case took a long time to get to verdict, five whole years!], a Georgia jury determines you were only 8% at fault, and awards $175,000.  Your take, after reducing the award by 8%, is $161,000.

Our take-away lesson:  texting while driving may be frowned upon [and illegal in many jurisdictions], but texting while walking can be very lucrative, albeit somewhat painful.


  1. That is nuts. Only in the US could a common citizen sue for something like this.

    1. Yep, I agree with you. It can be nuts here.