Family of motorcycle rider killed in Sabine Pass has Entergy suit dismissed

David Yates May 6, 2008, 9:14am

A Mississippi family who sued Entergy, claiming Merrell Robinson was killed because the power company placed a guy wire too close to the road, had their motion for non-suit granted.

Robinson, 39, died on Feb. 24 when his motorcycle went off the road in Sabine Pass.

Several months ago The Record reported that Eunice Robinson, representing Merrell's estate and children, filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Entergy Texas Inc. and Entergy Gulf States on Feb. 29.

On April 28, Judge Donald Floyd, 172nd Judicial District, granted the plaintiffs' motion for non-suit. All causes of action against Entergy were dismissed without prejudice.

According to the plaintiff's petition, Robinson was fatally injured when his motorcycle went off the road on Highway 87 near Sabine Pass and collided with a guy wire attached to an Entergy utility pole.

The Port Arthur News reported that at around 7:30 p.m. Feb. 24, the Port Arthur Police and Port Arthur Fire Departments responded to a call along Texas 87 and found a motorcycle driver dead in a water-filled ditch.

Another motorcycle rider informed the Port Arthur Fire Department in Sabine Pass about what he believed to be an accident ahead of him on Texas 87, about a mile north of Sabine Pass. The police and fire departments responded to the scene in what was about the 4400 block of South Gulfway Drive.

Officers investigating the accident reported that a single motorcycle was traveling north out of Sabine Pass and ran off the right side of the highway. The motorcycle struck a telephone pole guy wire, ripping it out of the pole. The motorcycle and driver continued for about 300 feet off to the right side of the highway.

"The guy wire and its anchor were too close to the roadway, and thus the defendants were negligent," the lawsuit said.

"Eunice Robinson was dependent upon Merrell Robinson at the time of his death for financial, emotional, and other types of support, which she has now lost, and she sues herein for the loss of this support, as well as for the loss of comfort, companionship, love, and affection occasioned by his untimely death."

Robinson's family was also suing for his conscious pain and suffering, funeral and burial expenses, and other losses accruing to his estate.

James Mehaffy is representing the plaintiff.

Case No. E181-373

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