Suit says company driver on cell phone caused wreck

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Oct. 10, 2011, 7:00am

GALVESTON - Claiming he was involved in a two-vehicle accident in Pasadena last year with a driver who was reportedly talking on his cell phone, Juan Munoz has filed a lawsuit.

According to recent court documents filed Sept. 30 in Galveston County Court at Law No. 3, defendant Waling Walthaus was on the clock for Ramtec Marine Systems LLC on July 1, 2010, when his employer-issued vehicle struck Munoz's in the Washburn Tunnel.

The original petition claims Walthaus failed to control his speed therefore rear-ended the complainant, adding the latter suffered "severe and permanent" injuries.

Additionally, the motorist failed to keep a proper lookout, failed to timely apply brakes, failed to maintain an assured clear distance between his vehicle and the plaintiff's, failed to maneuver the vehicle to avoid the collision, failed to control the vehicle and failed to avoid accident, the suit says.

The writ of respondeat superior is invoked as Ramtec is blamed for negligently entrusting one of its vehicles to Walthaus though it allegedly knew he was a "reckless" driver.

Consequently, Munoz sues for medical expenses, physical pain and suffering, physical impairment, disfigurement and mental anguish.

A jury trial is requested.

Terry & Threatt is representing the plaintiff, and Galveston County Court at Law No. 3 Judge Christopher Dupuy is presiding over the case.

Cause No. 66,117

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