Anybody who spends any time dealing with wintery weather conditions knows there is a real risk of spinal cord injury, traumatic brain injury and other significant injuries from slipping and falling on ice. Pedestrians walk gingerly and property owners take special care to ensure that their sidewalks and parking lots are well shoveled and salted. But when Towanna Crawley boarded a commuter plane headed for Newark Liberty International Airport, she did not expect that she’d have to walk outdoors, and the pavement on the tarmac she was forced to walk on was icy. Her resulting fall led to multiple injuries, and she just settled with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and others for $3.1 million.
The spinal cord injury that Ms. Crawley suffered on February 5th, 2014 has changed her life. When she fell she sustained injuries to her neck, back, and knee. Though she has already had three back surgeries and cervical fusion, none of those efforts have been effective enough to allow her to return to her career as a kidney dialysis technician.
Spinal Cord Injury Settlement Paid By American Airlines, USAir and Others
According to her original filing, Ms. Crawley’s spinal cord injury occurred when the small commuter plane she was traveling on was too small to use one of the elevated jetways that connect arriving and departing planes directly to the terminal. Instead, she was required to disembark down a metal stairway and then walk on the pavement, which was icy. Her suit resulted in US Airways and its parent company, American Airlines, as well as the Port Authorities of New York and New Jersey agreeing to pay her $3 million and Snowlift, a company under contract to remove snow and ice paying her $50,000. AFCO AV Ports, the company that manages the airport, also agreed to pay her $50,000.