WHEELING — A couple is suing a tractor company, alleging negligence led to a fire that injured the plaintiffs.

Johnnie L. Jones and Sophia Bowman Jones filed a complaint May 17 in Ohio Circuit Court against Gerard G. Nlemvo, Schandy Logistics Corp., Abraham Schandorfadjel and Hartt Transportation Systems Inc., alleging they failed to exercise standard care and skill required in maintaining a vehicle.

According to the complaint, on May 18, 2015, Johnnie L. Jones was operating a tractor with his wife Sophia as passenger. The suit says the exhaust standpipe came loose from its strapping and pointed the hot exhaust into the compartment of the cab, which caught on fire.

The lawsuit says the Joneses had to take evasive action, jumping out of the tractor. As a result of negligent maintenance work by the defendants, the plaintiffs sustained spine injuries, pain and suffering, emotional distress, and incurred substantial medical bills. 

The plaintiffs allege the defendants failed to timely and properly install, maintain and inspect the exhaust standpipe and its clamp connectors. This led, the suit states, to the fire that caused the immediate evacuation of the plaintiffs, causing injuries and damages.

The Joneses seek trial by jury, judgment for damages, interest, court costs, and all relief the court deems just. They are represented by attorney Donald J. Tennant Jr. of Tennant Law Offices in Wheeling.

Ohio Circuit Court case number 17-C-146

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