Single-car crash on Highway 124 subject of lawsuit

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau May 16, 2011, 8:22am

GALVESTON � A Louisiana man has filed suit over a one-car accident near High Island last year, recent court documents say.

Michael Fox is suing Stephen Rankin, Jennifer Woodard and the Texas Department of Transportation after he sustained injuries to his neck, back and other parts of his body in an accident along Highway 124 on Feb. 5, 2010.

The suit was filed May 5 in Galveston County Court at Law No. 3.

Rankin, doing business as Marine Pile Drivers, employed Fox at the time of the incident. The plaintiff was riding in a vehicle belonging to Woodard and driven by one of Rankin's ship captains.

Fox claims the captain caused the accident by driving head first into a large pile of gravel at the end of the road. He also notes that TXDOT failed to notify motorists about the road closure, stating the agency did not put a warning sign up.

"TXDOT had actual or constructive notice of these problems and had a reasonable amount of time to fix the problems, but failed to do so," the original petition says.

"If TXDOT was an actual person, it would be liable to the plaintiff under Texas law."

The defendants are ultimately blamed for various offenses, including but not limited to improper supervision, lack of adequate medical equipment and negligent entrustment of a vehicle.

Consequently, Fox seeks unspecified monetary damages and a jury trial.

He is represented by Arnold & Itkin LLP.

The case has been assigned to Galveston County Court at Law No. 3 Judge Christopher Dupuy.

Cause No. 65,210

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