On December 7, 2022, an appeals court overturned a $1,140,000 jury verdict in favor of a car driver struck by a left turning MTA bus at an intersection in Queens. The court found that the liability verdict was so contrary to the weight of the evidence that no reasonable jury could have reached that verdict on any fair interpretation of the evidence.The plaintiff was driving his car in the opposite direction of the bus on Hillside Avenue. A video clip of the accident revealed that the bus driver had a green left-turn arrow when she began her turn. The evidence also demonstrated that if the bus driver had a green left-turn arrow, the driver of the car entering the intersection in the opposite direction necessarily had a red light. The court also emphasized that since the collision occurred within 2-3 seconds of both drivers entering the intersection, the bus driver would not have had enough time to avoid driving into the driver's door of the car.
The jury verdict was vacated and a new trial was ordered. The damages for pain and suffering were also reduced as excessive to $840,000. As such if the plaintiff wins on liability again, theoretically a second damages trial won't be necessary if plaintiff agrees to accept the $300,000 shave from the appellate court. Blair v MTA and New York City Transit Authority, 2022 WL 17480849