CASPER (WNE) — A Natrona County jury awarded more than $2 million in damages last week to the wife and daughter of a man killed as a result of poor traffic control during construction on an Evansville intersection.
Bill Gray, 62, of Casper, was riding his motorcycle on the evening of Sept. 12, 2017 when he was hit by a driver at the intersection of the Old Yellowstone Highway and Cole Creek Road. He was airlifted to a Denver hospital with serious injuries, where he died two weeks later.
The Wyoming Department of Transportation, according to a complaint in the case, was contracting with the Knife River Corporation on the construction project, redoing asphalt and preparing to install traffic lights at the intersection on Yellowstone Highway. Knife River subcontracted with RoadWorx for the project’s traffic control, entrusting them with placing things like cones or barrels to guide drivers safely through the construction.
According to the original complaint in the case, the traffic control setup put in place at the intersection was confusing and unsafe.
On that September evening, said Grant Lawson, an attorney representing Gray’s family, the driver was trying to turn left onto Cole Creek Road from the Old Yellowstone Highway. She wasn’t clear where she was supposed to be heading, and her initial turn took her into an oncoming lane. While trying to adjust and move around the poorly placed barrels, she collided with Gray.
The jury determined in its April 20 decision that the driver was just 10% at fault for the crash. Knife River and Roadworx bore 60% and 30% responsibility each, according to the verdict.