Honolulu agrees to pay $2M settlement to injured pedestrian

HONOLULU — Honolulu officials have agreed to pay a $2 million settlement to a woman who was hit by a car while crossing a street in 2014.

The Honolulu City Council approved the payment last month to Mariah Tinay, who claimed that poorly maintained street conditions in Pearl City were major contributing factors in the crash, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported Sunday.

Tinay, who was 17 at the time, had gotten off a bus and was crossing Hookanike Street toward her home on the night of Dec. 19, 2014, attorney Michael Cruise said. She was struck by a passing car, leaving her with a severe brain injury among other injuries.

While the driver should not have hit Tinay, “it wasn’t a situation where she was really doing anything dangerous,” Cruise said. The driver, who was not speeding nor intoxicated, was unable to see what was ahead, he said.

The area did not have signs alerting drivers of the crosswalk and lighting did not meet city standards and was blocked by trees, Cruise said. The city has improved sidewalk safety in the area since the crash, he said.

The settlement amount was a compromise reached after mediation, City Corporation Counsel Donna Leong said. The city has denied liability.

“Ms. Tinay alleged the city’s design and construction of the crosswalk was flawed and was a major cause of the accident,” Leong said. “As a result of the accident, Ms. Tinay was in a coma for approximately two weeks and suffered traumatic brain injury.”

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Information from: Honolulu Star-Advertiser, http://www.staradvertiser.com

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