SPRINGFIELD -- Schneider National Carriers Inc. is facing legal action from driver a who claims she was injured in a wreck.
Joy Shields of Benton County, Arkansas, filed suit Feb. 18 in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri against Clayton-based Schneider National Carriers and Edwardsville, Illinois, resident Charles Thompson.
Shields is seeking compensatory damages for injuries suffered on May 20, 2015, while driving on Interstate 44 at or near Greene County. The suit claims she suffered severe physical and psychological injuries when her vehicle was struck and forced off the road by one of Schneider’s vehicles driven by Thompson. The company’s vehicle allegedly crossed into her traffic lane.
Shield claims she sustained injuries to her back, head and neck, according to the complaint. The suit accuses the defendants of negligence and vicarious liability. It also accuses Schneider of negligent hiring, training, supervision and retention.
The complaint alleges that the company selected “an incompetent and unfit driver” and allowed Thompson to operate a defective and unsafe trailer. It also alleges that Schneider allowed Thompson “to drive in excess of the hours of service provisions of Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 395.”
The suit notes that Schneider failed to have a system in place to keep track of the on-duty status of its drivers and failed to require Thompson “to advise the dispatcher of his current duty status so as to prevent him from being dispatched when, due to likely fatigue, it was unsafe to do so.” The complaint also notes Schneider’s “Unsafe Driving” rating with the Motor Carrier Safety Measurement System.
“Aggravated (punitive) damages are appropriate in this action in order to punish Defendant’s and deter others from similar conduct,” the complaint argues.
Shields represented by Patrick T. Hinrichs of The Bradley Law Firm in St. Louis.