Last week we reported on a court case in which the parent company of E-Z-Go was being sued for injuries sustained to Roderick Jenks who fell from the back of a golf cart at the New Hapshire Motor Speedway in Loudon a few years ago.
Jenks’ family have been involved in litigation for more than three years and all parties were relieved that the settlement had been reached.
"The parties have agreed to settle the remaining claims against Textron to avoid further litigation and expense," attorneys for both Textron and Roderick and Melissa Jenks said in a joint statement.
The amount of the settlement was not disclosed but Jenks' attorney said they have been involved with helping Mr and Mrs Jenks for six years. The original incident occurred in 2003 when Mr Jenks fell from the back of an E-Z-Go golf cart and hit his head on the pavement. His injuries were so bad that doctors had to remove part of his skull and cut out part of his brain due to severe swelling.
This resulted in Jenks relying on his wife for help with the most basic of tasks, is unable to show "care and love" to his wife and frequently gets lost in his own home. Mrs Jenks has already received a settlement from the speedway earlier this year resulting from a legal action started in 2006.
Textron lawyers argued that Mr Jenks assumed the obvious risk of riding on the back of the golf cart and that he knew that it was dangerous. But by grilling Textron about a previous accident three years earlier, where a man died after falling from the back of a cart, Mrs Jenks' attorneys were able to argue that E-Z-Go were already aware that people riding on the back of golf carts are at risk of serious injury or death. Knowing this, they argued, E-Z-Go failed in its responsibility to alert their customers to the risk.
In fact relatives of the dead man, 67-year old John Hall, did not sue but requested that Textron put warning labels on E-Z-Go golf carts notifying customers of the risk. This label did not appear on E-Z-Go golf carts until recently. It seems that after lawyers argued this point, Textron decided to settle the case with Mrs Jenks before it went to a decision from the judge.