There are often few avenues for fair compensation in the wake of a serious tragedy such as a fatal car wreck, but a recent lawsuit in Dallas County is an excellent example of how manufacturers may be held liable for negligence when they produce and distribute unreasonably dangerous products. In a 2010 accident, the driver Shonnie Bryan was driving a 2003 Chevrolet Impala through an Zandt County and lost control of the vehicle, crashing into a culvert on the side of the road. Contrary to the reasonable expectations of safety all drivers have while operating their vehicles, the air bags in Bryan’s Impala failed to deploy, resulting in serious injuries which lead to Bryan’s death.
By naming General Motors as the defendant in their wrongful death lawsuit, the plaintiffs are alleging that the car company is guilty of negligence in the design, manufacturing, and marketing of the Chevrolet Impala in question, which is alleged to be a “defective and unreasonably dangerous” vehicle. As with any wrongful death suit, there are a vast range of damages which the plaintiffs may seek, ranging from court costs and interest to funeral expenses, loss of companionship, medical expenses, and emotional suffering.
The full extent of the lawsuit includes Rodney Bryan as a representative of the Estate of Shonnie Bryan, as well as Shaila Bryan, Harold Pitts, Sheila Pitts, Johnny Tamez, and Dennis Yates, and is filed against General Motors, Watson Chevrolet Buick Pontiac, Scott Watson Chevrolet Buick Pontiac, and Watson Truck & Supply Incorporated. Reese P. Andrews of Andrews & Andrews in Nacadoches will represent the plaintiffs as their wrongful death attorney, and work to demonstrate the liability of the automaker and distributors.
The lawsuit was filed on November 21st in an Zandt County District Court before being removed to the Easter District of Texas, Tyler Division on January 7th by the defendant, allowing for the proceedings to begin in earnest as the family of Bryan hopes to recover full compensation for their losses and the death of Shonnie.