RED BANK, NJ October 9, 2018—Keefe Law Firm today announced that an electrician who sustained permanent injuries that scarred and disfigured multiple areas of his body when he was struck by 138,000 volts of electricity settled his matter for $2.275 million.
In May of 2014, Ronald Gosselin, then 52 years old, was working at the Passaic Valley Sewerage Commission’s facility (PVSC) in Newark, New Jersey. At the time, Mr. Gosselin was employed by a contractor for PVSC, High Voltage Maintenance Corp. (HVM). While on a mechanical lift and preparing to clean insulators, an electrical arc of 138,000 volts struck him, engulfing him in flames. Mr. Gosselin’s co-workers used fire extinguishers to put out the fire but he suffered second and third degree burns to roughly 47% of his body surface area. Mr. Gosselin survived but sustained severe, disfiguring and permanent injuries and scarring, and experiences daily, disabling pain. He will need medical care for the remainder of his life.
Mr. Gosselin filed suit against PVSC in the Essex County Superior Court of New Jersey, and PVSC removed the matter to the District Court of New Jersey. During the litigation, Mr. Gosselin, through his attorneys at Keefe Law Firm, argued that PVSC violated the well-accepted hierarchy of safety controls: first, eliminate hazards; second, guard against hazards; and, then, third, warn of hazards. In particular, Mr. Gosselin claimed that, had PVSC de-energized the electrical line where he was working, he would never have been injured. Alternatively, had PVSC physically barricaded movement into the energized portion of yard, Mr. Gosselin would never have entered it.
During a mediation session with the Hon. Patricia K. Costello, A.J.S.C. (ret.), Stephen T. Sullivan, Jr. partner at Keefe Law Firm resolved the matter on Mr. Gosselin’s behalf against PVSC for $2.275M.
Mr. Sullivan commented, “This was a catastrophic, but wholly preventable accident. While the settlement is substantial, it arose from a terrible loss. I compliment the dedication and enormous efforts of Keefe Law Firm’s attorneys and staff, Mr. Gosselin’s perseverance and the professionalism of PVSC’s defense counsel.”
About Keefe Law Firm
Founded in 2005, Keefe Law Firm is a full service law firm representing individuals and organizations. We are committed to providing experienced, aggressive representation and extremely responsive service for clients in New Jersey and nationwide. Our key practice areas include criminal, construction and commercial litigation, personal injury, subrogation actions, mass tort, employment, consumer fraud, workers compensation, alternative dispute resolution, real estate and land use, and trusts and estates.
John E. Keefe, Jr., the firm’s founder and New Jersey Certified Civil Trial Attorney currently serves as the president of the New Jersey State Bar Association and has served as plaintiff’s liaison in several NJ and national class action law suits. The firm has offices in Red Bank, Newark, New Brunswick, and Point Pleasant, New Jersey. For more information, visit keefe-lawfirm.com
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