Most of Martin de Ridder’s memory in the months proceeding the construction site accident on July 5, 2012 are now lost. He was working on a $54 million, bridge-building job in Wisconsin when the task of lifting a 52-ton concrete girder resulted in disaster. He and another crane operator were parked on a barge lifting the girder in tandem using a combination of precise timing and methodical balance, when something went horrifically wrong.
De Ridder’s crane collapsed and tipped on its side. He was thrown 10 feet from the crane’s cab and suffered massive head injuries. When he arrived at the hospital, his pupils were fixed and dilated – a sign that let doctors know that he was quickly progressing towards brain death. A CT scan showed massive bleeding in the brain with a large blood clot and enough pressure to impair the flow of blood to the brain stem. Thomas Wascher, a neurosurgeon who was waiting for de Ridder when the paramedics rushed into Theda Clark Medical Center stated that, “On a scale of one to 10, this was a 9.9.”
However, after seven months of intensive brain injury rehabilitation, treatments, medical procedures and surgeries, the prognosis for de Ridder is very optimistic. Washer calls de Ridder “one in 10 million because he suffered a traumatic brain injury and has made such a full recovery.” He said, “He’s essentially 99% functional. The fact he’s alive is amazing. But the fact that he’s so functional is even more amazing. I would like to think it’s a miracle. Or the closest thing to a miracle a physician will ever see.”
Countless victims of construction accidents that suffer from head trauma or spinal injuries as a result are not as fortunate. Insurance companies often fail to pay enough money to cover expensive medical costs and a lifetime of care many will need. If you have been put in a similar situation, contact our Nashville construction accident attorney to seek the monetary and non-monetary damages you and your family deserve.
“And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.” – 1 Peter 5:10