Texas wrongful death lawsuits will provide answers; Griddy also sued for price gouging
A lawsuit was filed by three people injured in the massive 133-vehicle pile-up on the express lanes of I-35 on February 11. Six people tragically lost their lives and at least 60 people were injured. Many other Texas wrongful death lawsuits and personal injury suits will be filed to establish liability and collect damages.
The plaintiffs accuse five companies of failing to hire, train and supervise capable drivers. The drivers are accused of driving too fast for the icy road conditions.
The lawsuit was filed in the 93rd District Court in Hidalgo County where one of the companies is headquartered.
The 18-wheeler companies sued were Federal Express Package System Inc., JB Hunt Transport, Inc., Rich Transport, LLC, GG’s Produce Transport, LLC, and Go To Logistics, Inc.
The chain reaction was caused by
- a thin layer of black ice;
- freezing rain;
- 75 miles per hour speed limit;
- lack of shoulders; and
- no warning signs.
This was a catastrophe waiting to happen.
Drivers reported that when they hit their brakes, there was no way to stop their vehicles.
NTE Mobility Partners, which operates and maintains the toll lanes, said that it had applied brine on Tuesday evening. It is not clear at this point whether
(1) more or a different de-icing agent should have been applied closer to the time of the crashes; and
(2) if the toll lanes should have even been open.
That photograph is crazy, especially since today’s temperature will get to 81 a week or so later. But it is troubling that our city and state were so unprepared for bad weather.
Several state representatives have demanded answers to how these disasters could have happened.
The National Transportation Safety Board is conducting an investigation.
Trials in the Texas wrongful death lawsuits will provide answers and accountability.
Deadly winter storm caused by energy grid and local power companies according to new suits
In related litigation news arising out of the historic freeze, several lawsuits have been filed against the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) on behalf of those who died in last week’s paralyzing storm.
ERCOT was widely condemned for its management of the electrical grid, turning off power to four million Texans when the wind chill was below zero. It then left power off for days instead of providing rolling blackouts as it first promised.
ERCOT provides almost all of Texas’s energy and we cannot borrow energy from the other two national sectors.
Several local Houston-based energy company have been also sued.
Several people froze to death, including an 11-year-old boy.
It is tragic that at least 29 Texans were killed during the storm, including the six in the tragic Fort Worth collisions. That number is more than one-half of the 56 people who died in the United States.
And we were 4 1/2 minutes away from having no power for months.
Investigations are needed to make sure we understand how these deaths occurred and how they can be prevented in the future.
The legal process will provide relief to the surviving families and victims.
Natural gas supplier Griddy also sued
In further related storm news, the power supplier was named in a $1 billion class action lawsuit yesterday.
It was accused of price gouging by a Houston-area woman whose usual bill of $200 to $250 per month shot up to $9,340.
Due to the deregulated Texas energy market, Griddy and other electrical providers can increase their prices, depending on market conditions.
Natural gas bills increased by 10,000% for many customers. That is outrageous.
People need to be protected
Federal and state officials need to prevent deadly but preventable highway crashes, power outages, and energy price gouging from happening so innocent Texans are not hurt and killed next winter if the temperatures plummet.