Trucking News: Carriers not fully liable for repairs by third parties, Florida court rules

Mike

Well-Known Member
Staff member
A Florida appeals court has ruled that a motor carrier is not liable to ensure a trailer is properly maintained after a third party has made appropriate repairs. The decision upholds a lower court’s decision to reduce the half-million-dollar jury verdict by more than 75%.

On Thursday, Dec. 4, Florida’s First District Court of Appeals affirmed a circuit court’s decision to award Tuong Vi Le more than $115,000 after a detached tire from a tractor-trailer owned by Colonial Freight Systems struck a vehicle in which she was a passenger.

Originally, the jury verdict awarded the plaintiff more than $500,000 in damages to be paid entirely by Colonial Freight. However, the circuit court judge reduced that amount to a little more than $115,000. The lower court ruled that the carrier is not fully liable for damages for which a jury determined was only 23% responsible.

 

Nomad1

Forum
Supporter
I really thought the carrier would be held responsible and then would sue the person who did the bad repairs.
 

ironpony

Professional Pot-Stirrer
Supporter
I really thought the carrier would be held responsible and then would sue the person who did the bad repairs.
The twist is...

The lower court ruled that the carrier is not fully liable for damages for which a jury determined was only 23% responsible.
The jury allowed a split verdict, so the judge could get away with allowing the carrier to get away scot-free.

Apparently, in Floriduh, the last one to touch it is responsible for all ****ups.
 

ironpony

Professional Pot-Stirrer
Supporter
A $115,000 ruling against you is getting away is scot-free? :confused-96:
$500k+ verdict, apportioned about 2/3s (vacated by the judge) to Colonial, 1/3 (about $115k) to the repair shop. Colonial is only out their damage to the trailer and attorney's fees.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Duck

Kleenex
Supporter
$500k+ verdict, apportioned about 2/3s (vacated by the judge) to Colonial, 1/3 (about $115k) to the repair shop. Colonial is only out their damage to the trailer and attorney's fees.

Yer coffee ain't working very well this morning @Duck
Carrier has to pay $115k to the plaintiff because they're 23% responsible. That's not scot-free.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

ironpony

Professional Pot-Stirrer
Supporter
Depending on the court jurisdiction, this may only impact Florida.
I doubt it will set any sort of precedent.
 

Mike

Well-Known Member
Staff member
I doubt it will set any sort of precedent.
It could. The argument will be that drivers are not mechanics, regardless whether you think they should be or not.

Think about an autonomous truck. Once they are on the road (if it happens), what happens when one of these trucks are routed in for a tire repair, and the tire goes flying off 100 miles later?

Drivers need to check their equipment, but I believe repair shops need to take responsibility for things that their mistakes cause.
 

ironpony

Professional Pot-Stirrer
Supporter
It could. The argument will be that drivers are not mechanics, regardless whether you think they should be or not.

Think about an autonomous truck. Once they are on the road (if it happens), what happens when one of these trucks are routed in for a tire repair, and the tire goes flying off 100 miles later?

Drivers need to check their equipment, but I believe repair shops need to take responsibility for things that their mistakes cause.
It's a state court in a civil liability lawsuit. Not a chance.
 

Fins

Well-Known Member
The above picture is of a Buick/Cadillac shared engine. A real POS engine too. On another Cadillac engine, they tucked an electronic distributor under the water pump. When the weep hole starts to drip, you are also out a distributor. Idiots. :coocoo:

Back to truck and trailer repairs, a driver is not authorized to complete any repairs to said units unless they are certified as an ASE repair facility. Technically, you can't even replace a light bulb. All documentation for ANY repair must be kept on file at the carriers home office.
Even if you read the fine print on the tire repair receipt, you will see that the lug nut torque must be checked in a certain amount of miles.
 

Electric Chicken

Well-Known Member
Supporter
The above picture is of a Buick/Cadillac shared engine. A real POS engine too. On another Cadillac engine, they tucked an electronic distributor under the water pump. When the weep hole starts to drip, you are also out a distributor. Idiots. :coocoo:

Back to truck and trailer repairs, a driver is not authorized to complete any repairs to said units unless they are certified as an ASE repair facility. Technically, you can't even replace a light bulb. All documentation for ANY repair must be kept on file at the carriers home office.
Even if you read the fine print on the tire repair receipt, you will see that the lug nut torque must be checked in a certain amount of miles.
Lmao my first thought was "is that a Chevy? It looks like something GM would do."
 

Electric Chicken

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Back to truck and trailer repairs, a driver is not authorized to complete any repairs to said units unless they are certified as an ASE repair facility. Technically, you can't even replace a light bulb. All documentation for ANY repair must be kept on file at the carriers home office.
Even if you read the fine print on the tire repair receipt, you will see that the lug nut torque must be checked in a certain amount of miles.
Documentation that says we can't replace light bulbs and fix other stuff?

Documentation that says we need to record every repair of a light bulb?
 

r3gulator3

IMA KEEP IT REDNECK
The above picture is of a Buick/Cadillac shared engine. A real POS engine too. On another Cadillac engine, they tucked an electronic distributor under the water pump. When the weep hole starts to drip, you are also out a distributor. Idiots. :coocoo:

Back to truck and trailer repairs, a driver is not authorized to complete any repairs to said units unless they are certified as an ASE repair facility. Technically, you can't even replace a light bulb. All documentation for ANY repair must be kept on file at the carriers home office.
Even if you read the fine print on the tire repair receipt, you will see that the lug nut torque must be checked in a certain amount of miles.
Lmao my first thought was "is that a Chevy? It looks like something GM would do."
I was just trying to point out the horrible lapse in reasonable thinking that infects engineers. Because 23% liable isn’t “Scott free”.

A light bulb or a crank handle isn’t going to kill someone. Er go the handing you the parts and wishing you luck. If you asked for brake shoes I bet the Convo would go way different.
 

Fins

Well-Known Member
My meaning was that if you have a light out, you are to take the vehicle to a certified repair facility to have the light bulb changed. And if you look at some of these Volvos and Freightshakers that have a retaining ring holding in the headlight bulb, they are not positioning the bulb correctly and they are breaking the retaining ring by forcing it into position. The telltale of this is the bulb bouncing around in the housing.

Hey, I don't write the rules.
 

ironpony

Professional Pot-Stirrer
Supporter
My meaning was that if you have a light out, you are to take the vehicle to a certified repair facility to have the light bulb changed. And if you look at some of these Volvos and Freightshakers that have a retaining ring holding in the headlight bulb, they are not positioning the bulb correctly and they are breaking the retaining ring by forcing it into position. The telltale of this is the bulb bouncing around in the housing.

Hey, I don't write the rules.
:rolllaugh3:

Brand me a "lightbulb scofflaw!"
 

r3gulator3

IMA KEEP IT REDNECK
My meaning was that if you have a light out, you are to take the vehicle to a certified repair facility to have the light bulb changed. And if you look at some of these Volvos and Freightshakers that have a retaining ring holding in the headlight bulb, they are not positioning the bulb correctly and they are breaking the retaining ring by forcing it into position. The telltale of this is the bulb bouncing around in the housing.

Hey, I don't write the rules.
I understood your meaning.
 
Top