In November 2013, the motoring community was in mourning following the death of Paul Walker, after he was involved in a high-speed crash in his limited-edition Porsche Carrera GT.
On the 28th of September of last year, Paul’s daughter, Meadow, filed a lawsuit against the Porsche Cars North American (PCNA) for the wrongful death of her father. Now, Porsche have responded with their answer.
The car manufacturer is now seeking to dismiss the lawsuit, as they are claiming the vehicle in question had been “abused and altered”, as well as “misused and improperly maintained”.
Altogether, within their seven page filing, they are claiming that passenger Paul Walker, and driver, Roger Rodas, were fully aware of the risks upon entering the car, and their deaths are essentially down to their “own comparative fault”.
The crash occurred when the friends left after a charity event for the victims of Typhoon Haiyan, held by Walker, at 3:30am. Their car then collided with a lamppost in a 45mph (72 km/h) zone on a Californian street, with security cameras later discovering that the car must have been travelling around 90-100mph (144-160 km/h).
Porsche goes on to say:
“PCNA alleges that Mr Walker knowingly and voluntarily assumed all risk, perils and danger in respect to the use of the subject 2005 Carrera GT, that the perils, risk and danger were open and obvious and known to him, and that he chose to conduct himself in a manner so as to expose himself to such perils, dangers and risks, thus assuming all the risks involved in using the vehicle. Mr Walker’s voluntary assumption of the risk should bar the plaintiff’s recovery or, in the alternative, should reduce the plaintiff’s right to recovery from PCNA in an amount equivalent to Mr Walker’s fault.”
This is a contrast to Meadow Walker’s suit, in which she accused the German car maker of knowing that the car had “history of instability and control issues”.
She is also contesting the police reports that suggest the Carrera GT was travelling at around 90-100mph (144-160 km/h) upon colliding with the lamppost, arguing that the top speed reached by the vehicle was in fact just 71mph (114 km/h).
Paul Walker was 40 years old when he died, and was in the process of filmingFast & Furious 7. After his death, filming was delayed, rewrites were made, and the movie was eventually completed using the actor’s brothers, Caleb and Cody, as stand-ins. You have to believe that no matter how tragic Paul and Roger’s deaths were, Meadow will struggle to win this lawsuit, based on the speed Roger was travelling at. Along with Walker’s incredible legacy he left behind in Hollywood, his final moments are also a lesson for anyone who ever considers dangerous driving; it simply isn’t worth the risk.
The next few months – possibly years – for the Walker family are going to be turbulent to say the least.
Paul was part of the Fast & Furious movie franchise for almost 15 years.