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Man awarded $5.7 million in crash suit involving postal worker

Motorcycle rider lost leg in wreck

POSTED: May 4, 2016 9:24 p.m.

A Cumming man was awarded $5.7 million last week in a suit against the federal government after a collision involving a U.S. Postal Service employee caused his leg to be amputated.

Jonathan L. Seitz received the award April 27 of $5,740,767.81 after a November 2012 wreck on Ga. 198 in Banks County.

Riding a motorcycle, Seitz attempted to pass a postal truck that had been delivering mail.

 “Just as he reached the side of (the postal worker’s) truck, however, (the postal worker) began a left turn into a private driveway and collided with Seitz on the front left side of her truck, resulting in severe injury to Seitz’s right leg and ankle,” according to the order signed by Senior U.S. District Judge William C. O’Kelley.

Seitz was airlifted to Atlanta Medical Center and had his right leg amputated the following month.

“My hope from this verdict is that the US Postal Service learns from this so that these types of crashes can be avoided in the future,” Seitz’s attorney Joe Fried said in a statement. “I have seen documents that suggest that this type of crash is all too common for postal employees.”   

Fried was assisted by attorneys Brian Mohs and Michael Werner.

“We are reviewing the decision and decline further comment,” U.S. Attorney’s Office public affairs officer Bob Page wrote in an email.

The case was tried before O’Kelley between Nov. 16-17. O’Kelley wrote in his decision that the postal worker “failed to utilize a tum signal.”

“Proper signaling is not only a postal policy but also a statutory requirement,” he wrote.

Seitz was in a 13-day coma, fracturing multiple bones in his right leg. At the time of his lawsuit against the federal government, Seitz had already incurred more than $1,100,000 in medical expenses.

“The judge did an exceptional job in carefully considering the evidence,” Fried wrote in a statement. “We felt that Mr. Seitz deserved an even larger verdict, but we are satisfied with what the judge did.”



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