CHARLESTON -- Four individuals are suing Ceva Logistics in two separate lawsuits after they claim an employee of the company caused a vehicle accident when he lost control of his vehicle while attempting to urinate in a cup while driving.
Hailing Reorganization III LLC, doing business as Glen's Towing & Road Service and Franklin Walters were also named as defendants in the suit.
The plaintiffs in the suits are Chris Shields, Heather Shields, Jarred Butcher and Timothy VanDergrift.
On Oct. 8, 2011, Chris Shields had driven off to the shoulder of Interstate-77 near mile marker 74 to assist his father with a disabled vehicle that he was driving, according to two complaints filed May 21 in Kanawha Circuit Court. VanDergrift was a passenger in Chris Shields' vehicle.
The plaintiffs claim Glen's Towing was dispatched by West Virginia Courtesy Patrol to help with the removal of the disabled vehicle.
When the tow truck arrived and began loading the disabled vehicle, Chris Shields was standing near the vehicle at a safe distance from the highway, according to the suits, but at approximately 3:30 a.m., Walters, while operating a Single Unit Box Truck owned by Ceva, failed to maintain control of his vehicle as he attempted to urinate in a cup with still driving.
The plaintiffs claim Walters' vehicle ran onto the right shoulder of the highway, striking Chris Shields, and then crashing into the flat-bed tow truck owned by Glen's Towing. Walters was traveling at approximately 70 miles-per-hour which he struck Chris Shields.
The defendants owed a duty to the plaintiffs and breached this duty by recklessly driving and disregarding the safety of the plaintiffs, according to the suits.
The plaintiffs are seeking compensatory and punitive damages with pre- and post-judgment interest. They are being represented by Robert B. Warner and Tammy Bowles Raines.
The cases have been assigned to Circuit Judge Carrie Webster.
Kanawha Circuit Court case numbers: 12-C-945, 12-C-946