PANAMA CITY, Fla. (Feb. 24, 2015)—Five companies named in a lawsuit have agreed to pay the families of two Indiana girls, who suffered life-altering injuries in a parasailing crash in July 2013. In a press conference Tuesday, the attorney for one of the victims announced all sides in the lawsuit agreed to a mediated settlement.
“I’m glad to announce that this very complex case, involving five different companies, has come to a satisfactory conclusion for these two girls, Alexis Fairchild and my client Sidney Good”, said attorney Wes Pittman. “Fortunately, the financial settlements in their cases will go a long way toward making their lives much easier.”
Details of the settlement are confidential, but after more than a year of negotiations and mediation, Pittman said all sides agreed to a settlement last week.
Fairchild and Good, both 17 years old at the time, sustained critical injuries when high winds caused the tow rope on their parasail to break. Video captured by onlookers showed the girls drifting over the beach before slamming into the 13th floor of a condominium building. The parachute then carried them over the building before dropping them on top of a parked SUV.
Families of the girls named five companies in the lawsuit, including ride operator Aquatic Adventures, Treasure Island resort, which managed the property the girls were staying, the manufacturer of the tow rope that broke, the wholesaler of the rope and a beach rental service.
“Both suffered horrible injures that will last a lifetime”, said Pittman, “and will have a profound effect on how they must live their lives, and how much enjoyment they can get out of their lives.”
Both victims suffered severe injuries, including head and spinal injuries. After several months in hospitals in Panama City and Indianapolis, Fairchild and Good were transferred to rehabilitation facilities near their Huntington County, Ind. homes.
According to a release sent on behalf of the Pittman Firm, part of the money will go towards the girls' continuing medical treatment. Both suffered brain damage and read at a slower level, and Good is struggling with severe vision issues, said the attorney. However, Pittman said both girls are working to move on with Fairchild applying to colleges and Good enrolling in cosmetology school.