Most of the stories you read in this blog are about accidents – motor vehicle collisions, slip and fall injuries, swimming pool drownings, and other mishaps which result in someone getting hurt or killed. These incidents represent the beginning of what is frequently a long and arduous process of determining who is responsible for the accident and then compensating the victims and their families accordingly.
But this next story is different. It’s about the end of that process.
A Las Vegas television station reported this week that the family of a man who perished in a zipline accident has reached a settlement with the zipline operator. On Independence Day 2007, Jesus Valencia was just about to begin his descent down a zipline when he fell to his death from the top of a tall tower, landing on a scissor lift platform. The incident took place near Pahrump at the Front Sight Firearms Training Facility.
Though the settlement terms are confidential, the TV station says that Valencia’s wife and two kids will receive a total of $2 million to be paid through 2013. In exchange, the Valencias will drop their wrongful death lawsuit and Front Sight will not admit to any wrongdoing (other than the fact that the company had no liability insurance at the time of Valencia’s death).
The precise circumstances which led to Valencia’s accident are not clear. The two men supervising the zipline were both accused of negligence at various times during the proceedings, as was the operations manager for Front Sight. But now that the settlement has been signed, it’s quite likely that the Valencia family may never know exactly how the husband and father died. However, their long journey to receive compensation for their loved one’s death is now over.