Ken Fulginiti Talks Record-Setting Philadelphia Personal Injury Settlement on Talk Radio 1210
Ken Fulginiti recently shared the story of the largest pre-verdict settlement in Pennsylvania state court history, $160 million paid by U-Haul to victims of a propane tank explosion, on the “Legal Eagles Radio” show on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT. The show covered the compelling “David vs. Goliath” case won by Duffy + Fulginiti and others that demonstrated the power of experienced Philadelphia personal injury attorneys.
In their work, Fulginiti explained, the legal team focused on several key issues, including the food truck’s decades-old propane tank. Propane tanks have dates stamped into the metal, which indicate when they need to be inspected and whether they may be filled. A propane cylinder may not be refilled if the date of manufacture is more than 12 years, he noted.
The propane cylinder also lacked a pressure relief valve and a splitter valve. Compounding these issues was the fact that U-Haul overfilled the tank rather than stopping at the standard 80 percent level to account for propane’s expansion. The scale at the U-Haul facility was broken, Fulginiti explained, therefore the cylinder could not be properly weighed.
Even with all of this evidence, the case was far from a foregone conclusion. Fulginiti and his team faced over 40 attorneys for the defendants. They worked collaboratively to conduct over 55 depositions of witnesses, which included defense witnesses from U-Haul, police officers, even people who walked by on the sidewalk. Fulginiti also pulled in experts who examined the food truck, taking out every appliance to verify that there was no gas leak or other reason that could place blame on anything other than the propane tank.
Fulginiti explained that, while there had not been a trial verdict or any award, both punitive and compensatory damages were considered during mediation talks. Compensatory damages are designed to compensate the victim while punitive damages punish the defendant for their actions.
The case was ultimately settled for a record $160 million, which included the largest settlement ever paid to a minor in Pennsylvania. In addition, the settlement prescribed more rigorous safety training for U-Haul workers who refill propane tanks, to hopefully prevent future occurrences.
The radio show, which aired on Labor Day Weekend, was especially timely as Americans across the country fired up their grills, many with no real idea of the dangers of propane tanks. Accidents happen more frequently than you might imagine. If you or a loved one have been injured by a faulty product, contact an experienced product liability attorney.
Duffy + Fulginiti, founded in 1988, is committed to making a difference in the City of Philadelphia through its advocacy of victims of catastrophic injury and their families. To learn more, visit www.duffyfirm.com.