Keeping employees and the public safe is the department’s highest value. Controlling damage to vehicles and reducing personal injury in work zones, on right-of-way and other areas under department control helps MoDOT accomplish this goal. Compared to the first two quarters of 2021, there was a 60% increase in the number of claims. Most of the claims in 2022 were attributed to pavement defects. Also compared to first two quarters of 2021, there was a 21% decrease in the amount paid.
This quarter, payments were made on 310 claims against the department, totaling $1,742,751.70. Two litigated claims accounted for 55% of this quarter’s payments. The first crash occurred when a group of people were crossing the highway and were struck by a tow truck. They allege the lack of a crosswalk contributed to this accident. The arbitration award totaled $761,233.19 for multiple fatalities and severe injuries. The second case was where the plaintiff's mother was driving northbound in the southbound lanes colliding with three vehicles. This resulted in a fatality. This lawsuit was settled for $200,000, due to inadequate signing.
To achieve the general liability number of claims target, the focus needs to be on the department’s most common claims. Historically, the top five most frequent claim types annually are pavement defects, debris on the roadway, chip seal, mowing and striping operations.
Purpose of the Measure:
This measure tracks the number of general liability claims and amount paid.
Measurement and Data Collection:
General liability claims arise from allegations of injuries/damages caused by dangerous conditions on MoDOT property and the injury/damage that directly resulted from the condition. In addition, an employee must be negligent and create the dangerous condition or MoDOT must have actual or constructive notice of the dangerous condition in sufficient time prior to the injury/damage to have taken measures to protect the public. Claims data is collected from Riskmaster, the department’s risk management claims administration software.
The target for this measure is updated annually. It is calculated by determining a 5-year average and subtracting 10%. (Exceptionally high or low years are excluded from the 5-year average calculation to determine a practical target.)
Kansas City District
Claims Administration Manager