Lieupo v. Simon's Trucking, Inc.Annotate this Case
The Supreme Court answered a question certified to it by the First District Court of Appeal by holding that the private cause of action contained in Fla. Stat. 376.373(3) permits recovery for personal injury, thus receding from precedent.
Plaintiff brought this suit alleging that Defendant was strictly liable for injuries he suffered after one of Defendant's tractor-trailers spilled battery acid onto the highway. Plaintiff filed his complaint under section 376.373(e), which imposes strict liability for the discharge of certain types of pollutants. The jury found the battery acid caused Plaintiff's injuries and awarded him more than $5 million in damages. The First District reversed, concluding that Curd v. Mosaic Fertilizer, LLC, 39 So. 3d 1216 (Fla. 2010), required it to apply the 1970 Pollutant Discharge Prevention and Control Act's definition of damages, which precluded Plaintiff's cause of action for personal injuries. The Supreme Court quashed the First District's decision, holding (1) Curd incorrectly applied the 1970 Act's definition of "damage" to a claim brought under the 1983 Act; and (2) the plain meaning of "all damages" in section 376.313(3) of the 1983 Act includes personal injury damages.