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Injured ironworker wins $32.9 million

Injured ironworker wins $32.9 million

In what could be among the largest personal-injury awards ever granted in New York, a jury yesterday gave $32.9 million to a local iron worker who suffered severe brain trauma in a fall.

State Supreme Court jurors awarded the money to ******** of Spencerport, who fell 30 feet on April 22, 1997, while helping build a Home Depot home-improvement store in Newburgh, Orange County.

********, now 35, is totally and permanently disabled, said his lawyer, John Maxwell of Buffalo. Personal injury lawyer A. Vincent Buzard of Rochester, who wasn’t involved in the case, said the award could be one of the highest ever granted in New York.

“This is certainly among the largest, either here or anywhere,” Buzard said. The award could be reduced if Home Depot moves to set it aside on the ground it was excessive.

Home Depot’s lawyer, Samuel M. Vulcano of Syracuse, could not be reached for comment.

*******, who is married and has one child, fell off a steel cross-beam while working on construction of the store. He sued, claiming that Home Depot failed to provide him with safety equipment that would have prevented the fall.

The award included $25 million for future pain and suffering. It also included $2.8 million in lost future wages, $2.7 million in future medical expenses, and $2 million for past pain and suffering. – The Buffalo News