WJTV News Channel 12 - Woman undergoes hours of plastic surgery after bridge accident

23-year-old undergoes hours of plastic surgery after bridge accident, lawsuit pending

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For 23-year-old Victoria Gross, it was just another day at the lake.

Everything changed when she was on jet ski driving under Peak Creak Bridge in Pulaski County, when something hard hit her head and basically split open her shoulder.

Her now attorney, Dave Gibson, explains how traumatic this unexpected event has been for Victoria and her family.

"Her injuries are significant, permanent and life-changing," Gentry Locke Rakes & Moore attorney, David Gibson says. "Only time will tell how much of recovery she'll need. She's been unable to return to work at this point and has had numerous doctor's visits scheduled."

Victoria's injuries are so severe, at the request of the family we aren't showing new photos of her, but Gibson tells us she went through 8 hours of plastic surgery the evening of the accident. The beautiful, young girl still faces many more surgeries.

"Victoria is continuing to suffer from significant headaches, along with other symptoms which appear to indicate a significant brain injury," Gibson says.

Gibson says one VDOT representative told him a truck driving over the bridge might have dropped the concrete.

While Gibson shows WSLS pictures he took right after the accident. He points to what looks like a large chunk of concrete missing from Peak Creek Bridge.

He's also connected with Barbara Conner, who we first told you about earlier this week, she lives right near where Victoria was severely hurt.

For Conner, it wasn't a surprise. After all, she's been e-mailing VDOT for years about concrete falling from the bridge. It's another reason, Gibson thinks this is a tragic accident that may been prevented.

"What we do know is by all accounts VDOT ignored numerous warning signs and by warning signs, I mean specific complaints by citizens," Gibson says.

The next step for the law firm to do an independent inspection of the bridge, they are awaiting VDOT's approval. They are putting a team of structural engineers and bridge consultants together.

"Whether a lawsuit will be ultimately be filed we don't know," Gibson says. "Anybody who bares responsibility for Ms. Gross' injuries, we want to hold them accountable."

Gibson says VDOT contracts most work out to Infrastructure Corporation of America.

For this young woman, who is now dealing with way more then she should, Gibson says some justice needs to be done.

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VDOT did confirm a contractor was working on the bridge surface Tuesday night for 'routine maintenance.'

However, the bridge is still not listed as structurally deficient. It ranks as a 5 on a 1 to ten scale, where 4 and under are deficient. VDOT says the bridge does not have an immediate need for repairs.

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