MARSHALL — The heirs of a Pepsico employee who died in a vehicle fire due to being trapped in the front cabin of his delivery van after a crash, is alleging the negligence of Pepisco and several vehicle and parts manufacturers caused the fatality.
Crystal Hartsfield, Dviad Hartsfield, Cadie Hartsfield and Kevon Hartsfield as heirs of the eEstate of Kendrick Hartsfield, deceased filed a complaint Nov. 18 in the Marshall Division of the Eastern District of Texas against Daimler Trucks North America LLC, doing business as Freightliner Sprinter, Pepsico Inc., Toyota Motor Corporation and others, alleging strict liability and negligence.
According to the complaint, Kendrick Hartsfield died May 8, while on his way to stock a Walmart with Pepisico products. The suit states his Freightliner Sprinter van was traveling on Toll Road 49 near Tyler when a Toyota Sequoia hydroplaned into his lane of travel. The suit says the Sequoia's fuel system ruptured causing fuel to spill and ignite the crash area. Hartsfield's van caught fire, the lawsuit alleges, and he was unable to escape due to the van's cargo bulkhead pinning him inside.
The plaintiffs seek monetary relief, trial by jury, interest and all other just relief. They are represented by attorneys Jeffrey Embry, Christopher Peirce and Matthew Montgomery and Hossley Embry LLP in Tyler.
Marshall Division of the Eastern District of Texas case number 2:19-CV-00379