Daughters of St. Charles Missouri good samaritan awarded $150,000 in settlement

The daughters of a St. Charles man who was struck and killed by an automobile when he stopped to help another driver who had been in a car accident were awarded $150,000 in a settlement with Cincinnati Insurance Company.

Three years earlier, the daughters had settled with the insurance company for $450,000 based on underinsured motorist coverage, for the negligence of the driver who actually hit and killed Lee Widaman. This July 2010 trial was based on uninsured motorist coverage, based on the negligence of the driver who Widaman stopped to help. However, the parties settled this case before trial was complete.

The plaintiffs claimed that the driver who Widaman stopped to help was liable under the “rescue doctrine.” In Missouri, the rescue doctrine allows an injured party to recover from the person they attempted to rescue if that person’s negligence put him in the position where he needed rescuing. Gray v. Russell, 853 S.W.2d 928 (Mo. 1993).