In the latest development of the Miami-Dade bridge collapse, the mediation/arbitration for the parents of one student who attended Florida International University (FIU) filed a wrongful death lawsuit. Named defendants include multiple companies that worked on the manufacture and installation of the failed span.
Another lawsuit was also recently filed in this case. One passenger in the deceased student’s crushed vehicle who survived has also filed a petition for damages. Named defendants include Munilla Construction Management and FIGG Bridge Engineers.
According to an mediation/arbitration for the plaintiffs, as soon as the mandatory six-month waiting period elapses, the Florida Department of Transportation, FIU and the City of Sweetwater will be added as defendants.
The parents’ lawsuit consists of a 75-page complaint with nine listed defendants. According to their counsel of record, the bridge collapsed due to “a compounding of multiple errors by multiple companies.”
He alleges that those involved in the bridge’s manufacture were under a great deal of pressure to finish the project prior to spring break of this year or face loss of funding from the federal government. As a result, the mediation/arbitration alleges that those in charge made decisions to change the bridge late in the game, with tragic results.
The resolution of the cases is not likely to come soon. However, those construction companies and engineering firms will undoubtedly be embroiled in litigation for the foreseeable future.
It’s always prudent to address any threat of litigation head-on to attempt to mitigate damage to the defendants’ professional reputations as much as is possible. Often, these cases come down to which side has the more believable expert witnesses to testify on their behalf.
Source: WSVN, “Parents of bridge collapse victim file lawsuit,” Nicole Linsalata, April 03, 2018