Two truck drivers on icy road collide, land in lawsuit

Michelle Keahey, East Texas Bureau Jan. 7, 2013, 9:33pm

TYLER - A truck driver from Mesquite has filed a lawsuit against a trucking company and the driver he claims failed to slow down and collided with his tractor-trailer. 

Marcos Garza Jr. filed suit against Swift Transportation Co., Swift Transportation Co. of Arizona LLC, Swift Transportation Services LLC, Swift Leasing Co. Inc., Swift Leasing Co. LLC and Adrian Welch on Jan. 3 in the Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Division.

The crash occurred on Feb. 4, 2011, as Garza was traveling eastbound in the right-hand lane on Interstate 20 in Smith County. The suit states that due to inclement weather, including snow and ice, Garza stopped his tractor-trailer rig.

As defendant Adrian Welch was driving a tractor-trailer rig eastbound in the left-hand lane of Interstate 20 and approached the multiple stopped vehicles, he failed to control his speed he collided with plaintiff Garza, according to the lawsuit.

Defendant Swift Transportation is accused of negligence of entrustment, supervision, hiring/retention/training and for failing to keep a proper lookout, failing to avoid the incident in question, driver inattention, failing to properly maintain the vehicle, failing to take proper evasive action and for failing to operate the vehicle as a reasonable and prudent person would have done under the same or similar circumstances.

Defendant Welch is accused of failing to control his speed, improperly failing to maintain his lane of travel, for driver inattention and for failing to take proper evasive action.

The plaintiff is seeking an award of damages for medical expenses, physical disability, pain and suffering, mental anguish, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, disfigurement, court costs and interest.

Garza is represented by Matthew B. Flanery and Darren Grant of Grant & Flanery P.C. in Tyler and Tulsa, Okla., attorney Robert L. Briggs. A jury trial is requested.

U.S. District Judge Michael H. Schneider is assigned to the case.

Case No. 6:13-cv-00007

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