Family of Cyclist Killed in Garbage Truck Accident Files $10 Million Lawsuit

The family of the cyclist killed in a collision with a garbage truck filed a $10 million dollar lawsuit against the driver’s company.

41-year-old Tamar Monhait was riding north on Water Avenue, just north of the Hawthorne Bridge, when the garbage truck made a left turn into her path. The lawsuit, filed on behalf of Monhait’s family by Paulson Coletti attorney John Coletti in Multnomah County Circuit Court, states that Monhait was travelling in the bike lane when the driver of the garbage truck turned into her path. The lawsuit states that they failed to use a turn signal and was travelling too fast.

Surveillance video from a restaurant near the site of the crash captured the event.

Monhait, illuminated by a flashing light attached to either her bicycle or her body, can be seen approaching the intersection on her bicycle when the garbage truck suddenly makes a left turn. The video published by The Oregonian stops before the rest of the events unfold, but according to their reporting, Monhait’s body can be seen on the road behind the truck once the driver stops their vehicle.

The lawsuit claims that Republic Services, the company the driver works for, does not properly train its drivers to make a safe left turn.

The lawsuit also references a previous Paulson Coletti case where a Republic Services driver made an illegal right turn and caused a crash that severed the leg of a downtown office worker. The jury awarded the victim in that case $13.5 million, which was later reduced to $3.5 million by a judge.