A West Seneca man who suffered serious back injuries when he fell from a ladder in a 2007 workplace accident was awarded $5.2 million in damages this week.
Richard Piotrowski, 26, who worked as a maintenance aide at Seneca Health Care Center, fell to the floor after a misstep on a wobbly ladder, his attorneys said.
The jury concluded that McGuire Manor, owner of the West Seneca health care facility, violated workplace safety laws by providing Piotrowski an unsafe and poorly maintained ladder, according to his attorneys, Michael P. Stuermer and Richard P. Weisbeck Jr., of the Lipsitz Green Scime Cambria law firm,
The verdict followed a three-week long trial before State Supreme Court Justice Paula L. Feroleto.
Piotrowski had been instructed to paint a kitchen in the facility on Nov. 13, 2007. He fell as he descended the ladder.
Piotrowski underwent two surgeries and remains disabled, his lawyers said. He has not been cleared to return to work.
The jury found Piotrowski 60 percent responsible for the accident and the defendant 40 percent responsible, but the award is not reduced by Piotrowski’s culpable conduct, Stuermer said.
Piotrowski’s lawyers said they are pleased by the award, but McGuire Manor’s defense lawyers may appeal.
“We respect the jury’s verdict; however, we do not agree and are investigating an appeal,” said attorney Meghann N. Roehl, of Damon Morey.