Jeff Luther of Luther Collier Hodges & Cash, LLP won a defense verdict from a Clarke County jury after a four-day trial on September 26, 2019. The firm’s client, H.O. Weaver & Sons, Inc., was operating a tri-axle dump truck loaded with asphalt in route to a paving job in Wilcox County. The H.O. Weaver & Sons dump truck was traveling northbound at 64 mph as it approached the Fulton Junction when the plaintiff’s vehicle attempted to cross the northbound lane in an effort to turn south onto U.S. Hwy 43.
The defendant slammed on its brakes, sounded its horn and steered left in an attempt to avoid a collision. However, the plaintiff chose to accelerate, causing the two vehicles to collide in the median. The plaintiff suffered multiple rib fractures, a collapsed lung and lower back injuries resulting in lumbar laminectomy and fusion. The entire incident was captured on dash cam video. The plaintiff’s theory was that defective brakes caused the dump truck to steer left and that had the defendant not been holding a Southern Linc radio in his hand, talking at the time of the accident, that he could have controlled his vehicle and stayed in the right lane and missed her. Mr. Luther argued that any alleged deficiencies in the braking system, or talking on the cell phone, had no causal relation to the accident and that the plaintiff’s failure to yield the right of way was the sole cause of the accident.