The state of Alabama has paid $1 million to relatives of a South Carolina mother of two who was killed by a chunk of concrete from a pothole that flew through the windshield of a vehicle on a bumpy, crumbling section of Interstate 20 almost a year ago, officials said Thursday.
The family was paid even though they had never sued the state.
Two state officials confirmed to The Associated Press that the money was paid to compensate for the death of Jo Maureen Fisher in the freak accident, which occurred as the 33-year-old woman was traveling through the state with her husband and two young children on their way home to Goose Creek, S.C. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about the settlement.
Following a review, the state's Division of Risk Management made the payment for the Alabama Department of Transportation in a negotiated settlement with the family without any lawsuit or administrative claim being filed. State law limits such payments to a maximum of $1 million.
The state attorney general can approve such settlements when it's obvious a lawsuit is inevitable and there's a "serious risk" of the state losing, one of the officials told AP.