Tropicana Construction Accident Settled for $101M

Tropicana Construction Accident Settled for $101M

A construction accident at the Tropicana parking garage in Atlantic City that killed four workers has been settled for $101 million—the largest settlement for this kind of accident in U.S. history.

Four men, including Jimmy Bigelow, Michael Wittland, Robert Tartaglio Jr., and Scott Pietrosante, were killed when five of the building’s 10-floors collapsed on October 30, 2003. Thirty-six others were injured, one of whom—Dennis Butler—died last year as a result of his injuries.

Tropicana and eight other defendants were accused of taking shortcuts to speed up construction of the garage to compete with the nearby Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa. According to attorneys for the defendants, Tropicana bears the most responsibility.

“It was clear that Tropicana was on top. Not one thing was done without Tropicana knowing,” said Robert Mongeluzzi, co-lead counsel for the plaintiffs.

Mongeluzzi referred to the fatal accident as an “utter, unexplainable failure.”

“Cracks started to appear weeks before and nobody picked up the red flag. The people who paid the price weren’t the guys with suits and ties, but with shovels and picks,” he said.

The details of the settlement—including the breakdown of liability for the defendants and total amount per plaintiff—have yet to be determined.

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