Woman seeking $5 million plus after accident
Lawsuit names village, construction company, GNWT, bar and others

by Arthur Milnes
Northern News Services

FORT SIMPSON (Apr 24/98) - A Deh Cho woman -- confined to a wheelchair since a 1996 motorcycle accident -- is asking for more than $5 million in a lawsuit directed against a variety of defendants.

Kari-Lynn Hardisty, who is originally from Jean Marie River, suffered a variety of injuries after an August 1996 accident just outside Fort Simpson.

Hardisty was the passenger on a motorcycle driven by Tsiigehtchic's Russell Andre who has since been convicted of drinking- and driving-related offences arising from the accident.

According to documents filed with the NWT Supreme Court, Hardisty is seeking compensation from: Andre, Claude Trudel (the owner of the motorcycle), the commissioner of the NWT, the Village of Fort Simpson, Ter Mar Holdings, (the owners of the Sub Arctic Lounge), Rowe's Construction and other people and companies.

The lawsuit alleges that the GNWT, village, Rowe's and unnamed others did not properly maintain the highway where the accident occurred.

And, it alleges that the Sub Arctic Lounge did not take steps to prevent Andre from driving after consuming alcohol on bar premises.

"The plaintiff has suffered pain and suffering, has been disabled and will continue to endure pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, loss of housekeeping capacity, loss of earnings, loss of future earnings, loss of income- earning capacity and loss of the opportunity to earn income for an indefinite period and will continue to suffer such losses and damages for the foreseeable future," documents filed by Hardisty's lawyers state.

It asks for: general damages in a sum exceeding $250,000, special damages, including the cost of medical care, in the estimated sum of $5 million, other damages that may be proved at trial, costs of the legal action and any other the court might allow.

The lawsuit was filed last fall and asks that the trial be held in Yellowknife.

None of the parties involved would discuss the lawsuit on the record.

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