Attorneys from Sheehy, Ware & Pappas, P.C. successfully defended W. W. Webber in the recent trial of a multi-vehicle truck/auto collision case in Robertson County.
On September 15, 2006, on TxDot’s Highway 6 widening project in Brazos County, two pickup trucks had stopped behind a dump truck that was waiting for traffic to clear before making a legal, left turn off Highway 6 into a construction right of way. A second dump truck pulling a pup trailer crashed into the three-truck line from behind. The collision caused the first pickup to explode into flames on contact, killing the driver. The collision in turn propelled the pickup into the second pickup, severely injuring that driver. The driver of the second dump truck then veered left into the oncoming lane of traffic, colliding almost head-on with a passenger car carrying three college students, killing all aboard.
The suit alleged that the driver of the second dump truck was negligent in failing to pay attention and failing to control his speed, and that the owner of the second dump truck was liable for putting a truck on the road that was not in good working condition. Despite the clear negligence of the driver and owner of the second dump truck, the plaintiffs’ attorneys hoped to hold the construction companies primarily responsible, claiming they had created a situation they knew to be unsafe, by not requiring delivery trucks to turn left from a protected left turn lane. In particular, the suit alleged that W. W. Webber, one of the construction subcontractors, was negligent in suggesting that sub-contractors use that turn when delivering materials to W. W. Webber’s concrete batch plant site some four hundred yards off the roadway.
The trial lasted four weeks. Although the trial concluded with a verdict that the defendants were at fault, Sheehy, Ware & Pappas, P.C. client W. W. Webber will owe nothing. The jury found the drivers of the two dump trucks and TxDot 76 percent at fault, with the remaining fault apportioned equally among the construction companies. However, because of pretrial settlements by other defendants, W. W. Webber will pay nothing to plaintiffs. Lead Sheehy, Ware & Pappas, P.C. counsel James L. Ware and Tony Wilson represented W. W. Webber at trial. They were assisted by Sheehy, Ware & Pappas, P.C. associate, Catherine Till. Local counsel Jami Lowry of Franklin, Texas also assisted at the trial.