Coquihalla Highway shortly after 4 p.m. on Feb. 20, 2020. (DriveBC footage)

Coquihalla crash victim awarded $9 million in BC Supreme Court

Man who collided with tractor trailer driver who swerved erratically can no longer live independently

A man who suffered a severe brain injury when his car collided with a truck on the Coquihalla Highway six years ago was awarded $9 million in BC Supreme Court last week.

Johnberlyn Uy was travelling in a Honda Element on the highway with his girlfriend Cezza De Leon in the early hours of Jan. 31, 2014 when the crash occurred.

According to an agreed statement of facts in the decision posed on the BC Supreme Court’s website on Sept. 2, 2020, a tractor trailer driven by the defendant Daljit Singh Dhillon moved into Uy’s lane “suddenly and without warning” causing Uy to take evasive action. He lost control of his vehicle and struck the back end of the truck.

• RELATED: Multi-vehicle crash now cleared on Coquihalla Highway

• RELATED: Greyhound passenger speaks of chaos and fear during Coquihalla crash

Uy, who was 39 at the time of the crash and is 45 now, suffered severe head injuries, and was transported to Chilliwack General Hosptial, arriving at 4:44 a.m., transported then to Royal Columbian Hospital by 6:30 a.m.

He exhibited significant cognitive deficites in the coming months, many of which continue to this day. Care for Uy has cost in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

“Mr. Uy is capable of making a cup of instant coffee and perhaps spreading peanut butter on bread, but not much else,” that according to Elvis Amurao, Uy’s cousin who knew him from the Philippines where he grew up.

Amurao was a licensed doctor in the Philippines before he immigrated to Canada in 1998, and he now works as a registered nurse and has been taking care of Uy with the help of his wife Gertrudes Amurao.

Experts testified that Uy has zero ability to live independently, and will require constant care by the Amuraos moving forward.

BC Supreme Court Justice Ronald Skolrood awarded damages to Uy of $7.2 million for cost of future care, and other damages, including future lost earning capacity, special damages, and others totalling $9.1 million.


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