Tractor-trailer owner accused of negligence for faulty brake light

Andrea Dearden Sep. 8, 2014, 10:32am

The owner of a tractor-trailer is being asked to pay more than $1 million for a crash allegedly caused by a faulty brake light.

Rojaramani Bai Thronagiri Basisthagorata, also known as Roja Thronagiri, individually and as guardian of the estate of Rama Bhoopal Reddy Jammuladinne and as next friend of minors Meghana Reddy Jammuladinne and Kirthi Reddy Jammuladinne, filed a lawsuit against BTS Logistics, doing business as Bekins Tradeshow Services, on Aug. 11 in Jefferson County District Court. 

Basisthagorta says Rama Jammuladinne was driving a Toyota Sienna minivan west on Interstate Highway 10 in Jefferson County on April 2. A 2007 Volvo tractor owned by the defendant was directly in front of the minivan and was towing a trailer weighing more than 10,000 pounds, according to the lawsuit. 

Basisthagorta says a crash in the westbound lane forced the driver of the tractor-trailer to slow down, but he alleges the taillight and brake light did not function. Unaware the tractor-trailer was slowing, Jammuladinne allegedly hit the back of the trailer at full highway speed. 

Basisthagorta says Jammuladinne "suffered horrific injuries" as a result of the crash which will "likely render him permanently disabled for the remainder of his life." He says Jammuladinne was in a vegetative state for several months and emerged capable only of "extremely basic communication with his family." 

Basisthagorta accuses the defendant of negligence for allegedly failing to inspect and repair the non-functioning taillight and brake light, failing to provide proper notice to vehicles behind him he was slowing down and failing to keep a safe distance between the tractor-trailer and the vehicles driving behind it. 

Basisthagorta is asking for more than $1 million for medical expenses, pain and suffering, physical disfigurement, mental anguish and lost wages. He also seeks damages on behalf of the two Jammuladinne children for loss of consortium. 

Attorneys Kenneth R. Baird with the Baird Law Firm and Arshad A. Ramji of Ramji & Associates, both of Houston, represent Basisthagorta. 

The case number is Jefferson County District Court case D-195961.

This is a report on a civil lawsuit filed at the Jefferson County District Court. The details in this report come from an original complaint filed by a plaintiff. Please note that a complaint represents an accusation by a private individual, not the government. It is not an indication of guilt and it represents only one side of the story.

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