Cellino & Barnes Secures $1 Million Settlement for Victim of Frightening Industrial Accident

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New York-based personal injury firm represents Wyoming County man who sustained severe injuries when misused Bobcat catapulted him face-first onto pile of steel

After the Bobcat elevated the steel it was attempting to carry, the load slammed to the ground from a height of 11 feet, which catapulted Mr. Potter through the air and over the top of the Bobcat, causing him to land face-first onto the pile of steel

Attorneys from the New York law firm of Cellino & Barnes have completed the $1 million settlement of a personal injury lawsuit brought on behalf of a 41-year-old decorated Army veteran who was seriously injured in a June 15, 2004 industrial accident.

After several attorneys in the Western New York area turned down the case, Glen Potter v. Jay E. Potter Lumber Co., Inc. and James and Alan Leaton d/b/a Leaton Farms (Index No. 35990), was filed by Cellino & Barnes for their client, a Wyoming County resident who served in the U.S. Army as a sniper and was deployed to Bosnia, Kosovo and Somalia. Working as a laborer building a pole barn on the day of the accident, the plaintiff was instructed by his supervisor to position himself on the back of a Bobcat machine, which was rated to lift up to 1,500 pounds of materials. At the time, the Bobcat was loaded with 2,780 pounds of steel.

"After the Bobcat elevated the steel it was attempting to carry, the load slammed to the ground from a height of 11 feet, which catapulted Mr. Potter through the air and over the top of the Bobcat, causing him to land face-first onto the pile of steel," explained Richard P. Amico, an experienced trial attorney at Cellino & Barnes, one of the nation's largest personal injury law firms. His injuries were varied and severe, including the loss of most of his teeth, multiple disc herniations in his spine, multiple rib fractures, collapsed lungs and a traumatic brain injury. Mr. Potter ultimately underwent seven surgeries to correct his condition."

Mr. Amico and K. John Wright argued the case in a nine-day trial on the issue of the defendants' liability for violating Labor Law 240(1) and 241(6) and negligence. The trial court directed a verdict in favor of the plaintiff on his Labor Law 240(1) claim and the jury found in favor of the plaintiff on his Labor Law 241(6) claim, a decision that was subsequently affirmed by the Appellate Division in New York Superior Court. The plaintiff then settled his claim for $1 million, the full value of the defendants' insurance policy. The plaintiff declined to pursue the defendants' personal assets for the additional economic damages to which he was entitled as a result of his permanent injuries.

Cellino & Barnes is a New York personal injury law firm, with offices in Buffalo, Rochester, Melville, Garden City (Long Island) and Manhattan, New York. Cellino & Barnes focuses strictly on personal injury cases, including auto accidents, medical malpractice, construction accidents, premises liability and more. For more information about Cellino & Barnes, please go to http://www.cellinoandbarnes.com or call 800.621.2020.

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Daryl Ciambella
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