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State of Vermont to Pay $310,000 to Couple in Highway Accident

April 19, 2005

BENNINGTON, VT – The state of Vermont has been ordered to pay $310,000 to a couple who was injured when a steel pole flew off a dump truck and into their car, according to the Rutland Herald. A Bennington Superior Court jury deliberated just 15 minutes before awarding damages to Edward and Margaret Tateosian.In January 2000, the couple was driving on Route 11 in Andover when a chain guard came loose from a state highway truck and shattered their windshield. The pole was about four feet long, six inches wide, and weighed 15 pounds. It split Edward Tateosian's hand opened and caused him to swerve into the center lane into oncoming traffic before braking to a stop. The Tateosian's lawyer argued that the state Agency of Transportation knew the chain guard on its fleet of trucks were dangerous and did nothing to prevent the accident.The state acknowledged that it bore responsibility for the incident, but it argued that the chain cover's manufacturer and the company that installed it were also liable.

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