Bus accident in Saugerties settles for $365,000

Posted on Sep 17, 2010
On September 15, 2010, John Fisher reached a settlement in the sum of $365,000 at mediation in a bus accident case against the County of Ulster causing injuries to four children.  Honorable Howard Levine, retired Court of Appeals Judge, was the mediator.

On June 9, 2009, the children, ranging in age between 3 and 7 years old, were passengers in a bus that was transporting them from Wolf's Daycare Facility in Lake Katrine to their home in Saugerties, when the bus driver accidentally crossed double yellow lines into the opposing lane of travel on Glasco Turnpike in the Town of Ulster.  The bus and a car were demolished in the head-on collision in the eastbound lane of Glasco Turnpike near its intersection with State Route 9W.

Of the four injured children, the most signficant injury involved a comminuted fracture of the mandible (jaw) of a 5 year old that required four operations at the Albany Medical Center Hospital.  Plates and screws were surgically installed in the middle portion of the infant's jaw and she underwent debridement (removal of dead skin tissue) of the complex lacerations on her lower chin and unde her left eyelid. Treating plastic surgeon, Robert DeFatta, M.D., of the Williams Plastic Care Center in Latham, provided stellar medical care for the injured child.  After the operations, the infant was left with scarring on her chin that will require a revision of the scar and she will have an increased risk of temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder as a result of her dislocated jaw bone.  The 3-year old child sustained a fractured clavicle (collarbone), but recovered nicely.

Under New York law, the settlement proceeds will be deposited in a trust for the sole benefit of the children.  The settlement proceeds can only be invested in government insured bonds until the children reach the age of majority
(18 years old in New York).