Dania Ann Macie was hit by a car when she stopped to help another crash victim on the McGill Street on-ramp leading to the Ironworkers Memorial Bridge on Oct. 12, 2012. (Google Street View)

B.C. woman awarded $2M after stopping to help at car crash, getting hit herself

Good Samaritan, then 24 years old, had pulled over to give first aid in 2012 incident

A woman was awarded more than $2 million in damages after she stopped to help at a collision in 2012 and was struck by a vehicle herself.

Dania Ann Macie, then 24 years old, was driving to work at a community centre in North Vancouver one morning in October that year, heading for the Ironworkers Memorial Bridge, when she witnessed a man crash his car.

She knew first aid, so she pulled over and walked back to the crash site. She was standing, speaking to someone, when a vehicle hit her from behind.

“The impact threw her into the air. She travelled in the air about a car length before landing, face down,” said B.C. Supreme Court Justice George Macintosh in a ruling released Tuesday that illustrates how someone’s act of kindness can instead shatter how they plan to live their life.

“She does not remember the impact, or hitting the pavement. Her first memory was of lying on the pavement, face down.”

Macie, now 31, remembers very little about what happened, and has struggled significantly since.

ALSO READ: Driver who stopped to help B.C. car crash victim found, after family’s plea

She’d been studying to be a psychiatric nurse at Stenberg College in Surrey, and started experiencing headaches, irritability, and memory loss – having to “read and re-read everything.” She failed her exams and was eventually dismissed.

She also lost weight, couldn’t sleep, and became depressed.

Her ultimate difficulty became anxiety. The young woman, who’d grown up in Courtenay, said she suffered from panic attacks five times a week in which she just tries to “hold on.”

In 2018, she admitted herself to hospital because she thought she might self-harm.

At trial, the driver who hit her, Honorato Cruz DeGuzman, argued the crash had caused relatively minor injuries and damage, and that her present-day difficulties stemmed from “rebellious periods” in her teenage years, including depression, anxiety and other “troubles.”

The judge disagreed, saying she’d managed to get through that period, and pointing to the witnesses who described her as “outgoing” and an “achiever.”

He awarded her $2.07 million in general, special and other damages, noting the attorneys must calculate a lower total in loss of future earning capacity to reflect his finding that Macie would not have lost as much as she’d argued.

KEEP READING: Convicted B.C. gun dealer sues from prison over car crash injuries

Regardless, Macintosh wrote that the young woman had demonstrated, as both an adult and child, that she had an active intelligence and could lead a productive life.

He added: “But for the accident, the evidence shows that the plaintiff would probably be prospering today.”

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

BC Ferries: Changes to Kootenay Lake terminals underway

Progress is reported on new vessel, dredging, and terminal changes

Almost 20,000 parking tickets issued by Interior Health at hospitals in 2019

In 2018, pay parking in Interior Health hospitals totalled $5.3 million of their $2.2-billion budget

Therapeutic Riding Program celebrating 15 years in Creston Valley

Therapeutic Riding Program started endowed fund with Creston-Kootenay Foundation

Calls for Creston Fire Rescue down in 2019

Building permits, cemetery commission and more discussed at Jan. 14 Creston council meeting

UPDATED: Lead found in Nelson, Creston and Salmo schools

Fourteen water fountains tested for higher than accepted lead content

Anti-pipeline protests in support of Wet’suwet’en continue at B.C. government buildings

‘We are unarmed, they have guns,’ protesters chanted on Wednesday morning

Harry and Meghan should cover their own security costs: NDP heritage critic

The prince, Meghan Markle and their eight-month-old son Archie are reportedly staying at a mansion near Victoria

Theo the 800-pound pig trimmed down and still looking for love on Vancouver Island

“He’s doing really well, lost quite a few pounds and can run now.”

Horgan unveils B.C. cabinet shuffle changes

Premier John Horgan has made three major changes to his cabinet

Dog reunited with Tofino owner, months after being taken from beach

Shannon Boothman ‘ecstatic’ at pet’s return after a tip leads to social media search

B.C.’s first ride-hailing app to launch in Tofino, Whistler in February

The Whistle! app will be available in Tofino on Feb.1 and in Whistler Feb. 6.

Councillor resigns in Revelstoke after colleagues approved 67% raise

Council approved a 134 per cent raise for the mayor of Revelstoke

Rolled-over dairy truck in Abbotsford lost 40,000 litres of milk

Truck removed Sunday, Jan. 19, with specialized equipment to upright vehicle

Boy, 13, arrested after alleged assault involving girl at B.C. middle school

Boy alleged to have used ‘inappropriate levels of force’ to injure the girl

Most Read