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Judge awards Surrey bus rider nearly $100K after driver braked to avoid hitting truck

Accident happened at intersection of 76 Avenue and King George Boulevard in 2015
Statue of Lady Justice at Vancouver courthouse. (Black Press Media file photo)

A Surrey bus passenger who was injured when the driver braked to avoid crashing with a truck has been awarded nearly $100,000 by a B.C. Supreme Court judge in Vancouver.

Parminderjit Kaur Thind, who was 54 at the time of the Sept. 18, 2015 accident, sued the bus driver, TransLink and Coast Mountain Bus Company Ltd. but dropped her action against Rajvir Kaur Braich and Charangeet Singh Braich, the truck driver. The remaining defendants admitted liability for the accident.

Justice Karen Horsman heard Thind was “jolted” in her seat and sustained soft tissue injuries as a result. She was riding the bus to Mayuri Indian Cuisine, a restaurant where she works as a kitchen helper, when the accident happened at the intersection of 76 Avenue and King George Boulevard.

The bus driver, Garry Dorey, testified that as he was pulling away from a bus stop, he saw a slow-moving truck in his mirror and believed he had time to pull out ahead of the truck but as he drove forward the truck appeared to speed up, and so he braked.

“The left side of the transit bus hit the right side of the truck. The collision caused a scratch to a window pane on the bus, but no other damage,” Horsman noted in her Feb. 8 reasons for judgment. “None of the passengers on the bus informed Mr. Dorey of any injuries, and therefore no police or ambulance were called to attend the scene.”

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The court heard that after the accident, Thind continued on her way to work but later that day began to feel pain in her neck, back, right shoulder and arm, and experienced headaches. Horsman found her to be a credible witness.

“If anything, the plaintiff appears to be stoic in her resolve to manage her symptoms as best she can, while continuing with her work and home activities,” Horsman said. “The plaintiff clearly has a strong work ethic and a commitment to her family that has carried her through the past seven years. She is an impressive person.”

The judge noted the evidence supports the conclusion that Thind’s accident-related injuries resulted in headaches and disrupted sleep.

“While these conditions have improved, the plaintiff continues to suffer from weekly headaches and periodic sleep disruption. This is also likely to continue indefinitely,” the judge found.

All told, Thind was awarded $97,783.50.

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About the Author: Tom Zytaruk

I write unvarnished opinion columns and unbiased news reports for the Surrey Now-Leader.
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