Motor vehicle accidents can easily become cases of the plaintiff's word against the defendant's, unless there are witnesses, camera footage, or other evidence that sufficiently supports one story more than the other.
In a recent case before the District Court in New South Wales, a man fell off his scooter after colliding with a vehicle that pulled in front of him. However, the defendant has a different version of what happened.
According to the plaintiff, he was driving along the street where he lived on his Vespa motor scooter, prepared to meet friends at a coffee house and then head to the gym. As the plaintiff approached an intersection on his street, he claims that a utility vehicle that was parked on the left hand side of the street in a bus stop, made a sudden attempt to make a U-turn in front of the plaintiff, who had to slam on his brakes to avoid a collision.
He lost control of his scooter and the front wheel went under the utility vehicle. He fell onto his right shoulder, injuring it. He says the driver of the utility vehicle then came over to where he was lying on the ground and hit his helmet and asked where he had come from. The plaintiff says that is all he remembers about the events that caused the accident.
The defendant claims that he was attempting to make a right-hand turn in the intersection with his indicator on, but was waiting for traffic to pass before turning. He then heard scraping noises and turned his hazard lights on to get out and see what the scraping noise was. He then saw the scooter on the ground and the man on the ground near the front passenger side of the vehicle. He says that he then moved the scooter off the road before going to the man lying on the ground.
The defendant denies that he was first parked on the other side of the road and made a sudden turn, and he denies that he spoke to the plaintiff while he was on the ground.
The judge accepted the plaintiff's version of the story, as the defendant's version of the story on the day the events took place were inconsistent with what he said in court. The plaintiff sustained injuries that could affect his ability to work in the future, and thus judgement was made for the plaintiff against the defendant for $107,458.35 and that the defendant pay the plaintiff's costs.
If you have been the victim of a motor vehicle accident, contact our lawyers at Gerard Malouf & Partners Compensation, Medical Negligence & Will Dispute Lawyers.