1st Lawsuit Filed In I-75 Wreck At Ooltewah Exit That Killed 6; Cleveland, Tn., Man Asks $10 Million In Damages

Monday, July 20, 2015

The first lawsuit has been filed in the June 25 wreck on Interstate 75 northbound at the Ooltewah exit in which six people were killed and others injured.

Ryan L. Humphries, of Cleveland, is asking $5 million compensatory damages and $5 million punitive damages.

He is suing Benjam Scott Brewer, driver of a semi-truck that police said barreled into multiple vehicles stopped or slowed for a construction project.

Also sued were the owners of the Kentucky-based trucking firm that Brewer had just started driving for - Billy R. and Cretty C. Sizemore, and their Cool Runnings Express Inc.

The suit was filed in Hamilton County Circuit Court by attorney H. Franklin Chancey of Cleveland, Tn.

The complaint says Mr. Humphries was driving north toward his residence when he and other motorists encountered the TDOT paving project. It says he "along with multiple other motorists was required to bring his vehicle to a halt in order to safely pass through the area of construction."

It says Brewer "entered the area of the highway construction project at an excessive, illegal and unreasonably dangerous speed" and that he "failed to slow, stop or otherwise control his vehicle."

The suit says he "crashed violently into multiple vehicles including the vehicle operated by" Mr. Humphries.

It says the "grossly negligent and reckless conduct" of the truck driver "is, and should be, imputed to his employers."

The suit says the Sizemores "failed to exercise reasonable and ordinary care in its decision to hire" Brewer.

It was also charged that the trucking firm owners failed to maintain proper upkeep of the vehicle.

The suit says the plaintiff should be entitled to punitive damages due to the "recklessness and gross negligence" involved.

It says Mr. Humphries suffered "severe and disabling injuries, disfigurement of his body, and endured extreme pain, suffering and emotional anguish."


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