Pedestrian thankful for appeal outcome

A Cranbrook resident who was hit by a vehicle in 2008, was thankful that the BC Court of Appeal had set aside an earlier judgment.

  • Apr. 2, 2014 10:00 a.m.

Townsman Staff

A Cranbrook resident who was hit by a vehicle back in August, 2008, was thankful that the BC Court of Appeal had set aside trial judgment from an earlier ruling.

That trial, held June 2012 in Cranbrook, found that Lenord Russell was mostly responsible when he was struck by Kenneth Manson Parks, also from Cranbrook, in the Trackside Mall parking lot.

The new ruling awards Russell with $7,000 in one-time costs.

According to court documents, Parks was turning his vehicle around in the parking lot while doing shoulder checks for other vehicles. His 2005 minivan hit Russell, causing a torn medial meniscus of the right knee and fracture in his left foot.

“I am just thankful that I will finally have the money to afford the rehabilitation which ICBC previously refused to fund,” Russell said. “I used to enjoy hiking and hunting and fishing but I now walk with a bad limp and just haven’t been able to do those things anymore.”

Although Russell was a pedestrian, Justice Abrioux, who presided over the June 2012 trial, found Russell two-thirds responsible for the accident, and awarded no compensation to Russell.

On March 19, 2014, in a unanimous judgment, the BC Court of Appeal reversed the trial judge’s ruling. Madame Justice Bennett who wrote the judgment described the original ruling as “grossly disproportionate.”

“Mr. Parks was aware that there were pedestrians in the area, entered the lot from a direction that required him to swing wide to enter a parking stall, changed his mind at the last minute in terms of which stall he would take, shoulder checked numerous times, and ended up driving forward while he was looking backward, striking Mr. Russell,” wrote Bennett in the judgment.

The ruling found Parks three-quarters responsible and Russell one-quarter.