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Texas trucking company slammed with $7.4 million verdict


A Texas jury ordered a trucking company to pay millions to a man who was injured during a crash involving an oversized load in 2017.

On January 23, a Travis County jury awarded Ronnie Claxton nearly $7.4 million for an injury he sustained in a crash involving a driver working for Killeen, Texas-based trucking company Even Better Logistics, according to a news release from Claxton’s legal team.

According to lawsuit, in April 2017, Even Better Logistics driver Dennis Rayner was hauling an oversized, over-height load on southbound Highway 183 when he struck the Highway 71 bridge.

Claxton was driving in a pickup directly behind Rayner during the bridge strike.

Claxton’s legal team said that the “force of the crash caused steel turnbuckles and chains securing the trailer’s load to rip apart at a high rate of speed. A chain and a steel turnbuckle crashed through Claxton’s windshield.”

The lawsuit contends that Claxton suffered serious injuries during the incident and is now unable to work, dress himself, or drive.

The suit makes several accusations of negligence against Even Better Logistics, including that Rayner “fail[ed] to operate the vehicle on a TxDOT approved route”, and that “the company had no written safety policies and failed to maintain their vehicles.”

“Rayner could’ve pulled over, turned around or called for a police escort to get back on route,” Carlson Law Firm attorney Todd Kelly said. “Instead, he continued on an unsafe route where he hit a bridge. Upon impact, a tie-down ratchet, weighing 25lbs, was thrown into the windshield of our client Ronnie Claxton’s truck.”

“Today, a Travis County Texas jury heard Ronnie and rendered their version of Texas justice: $7,396,314, plus 2.5 years of pre-judgment interest at 5% on economic losses of $1,261,314,” Kelly said. 

We present to you the weird call for this week: an 18-wheeler with an oversize load hit the bridge at Hwy 183 under Hwy…

Posted by Austin Fire Department on Friday, April 7, 2017

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