Suit over fatal wreck at toll plaza settled

By John O'Brien | Jan 29, 2013

BECKLEY – A settlement has been entered in a lawsuit over the death of Jeremy Dickens, a Beckley man who died in an accident at a toll plaza in June.

Dickens, a father of two, died June 20 after, it is alleged, he was rear-ended by a tractor-trailer and shoved under the trailer stopped in front of him. His widow Andrea filed a lawsuit against Central Refrigerated Service and two employees.

“The individual defendants and each of them failed to operate the tractor-trailer… in a reasonable, prudent manner, and acted or failed to specifically act in a manner to keep a proper lookout, recklessly exceeding the reasonable prudent speed, to properly stop and/or keep said tractor-trailer under control, among other breaches of duty,” says the complaint, filed a month after the accident.

The complaint said the plaintiff, at the time, was without sufficient information to allege acts/omissions of duty that would attach direct liability on Central Refrigerated Services.

The two individual defendants were Michael Daugherty, the driver, and James Wallace, who was serving as a navigator and look-out.

Dickens was represented by Henry Wood of Wood Law Office in Charleston. Jeremy Dickens was 34 at the time of his death.

A motion for compromise and settlement was filed Nov. 8. Terms were confidential, though the motion included that the Wood Law Office would receive 28 percent of any recovery.

The accident occurred on the West Virginia Turnpike near Pax.

From the West Virginia Record: Reach John O’Brien at

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