SEBRING — A mediation conference involving an auto negligence lawsuit against the county has been rescheduled.

The lawsuit against the Highlands County Board of County Commission related to a traffic crash involving an emergency services driver and ambulance was scheduled for a mediation conference on Feb. 18. It has been rescheduled for April 22.

According to the complaint filed Dec. 10, 2018, on or about Nov. 14, 2017, Jennifer Serrano was employed by the Highlands County Board of County Commission as an emergency services driver. She was driving an emergency services vehicle near the intersection of U.S. 27 and Schumacher Road in Sebring.

The complaint claims that Serrano negligently operated the motor vehicle so that it collided with a vehicle operated by Paula Smith.

As a result of the negligence, Smith has “suffered bodily injury resulting in pain and suffering, disability, disfigurement, expense of hospitalization, medical and nursing care treatment, loss of earnings and/or loss of earning capacity.”

A Nov. 28, 2017 letter from Dean Burnetti Law, Lakeland, to the Highlands County administrator states at about 11:47 a.m. on Nov. 14, 2017, Smith was stopped at a red light when Serrano rear-ended Smith with an ambulance. Smith’s neck, back and legs were injured and she is experiencing headaches.

On Dec. 12, 2018 Highlands County filed a motion to dismiss the case stating the plaintiff’s complaint failed to state a cause of action and establish the liability of the defendant.

Both parties have agreed to have James W. Kelly of Avon Park serve as the certified mediator for the conference.