After an 18-wheeler caused a multi-vehicle wreck on I-10, the victims have filed a lawsuit against Louisiana's Department of Transportation for failing to properly place traffic cones on the interstate.

Carlos Vides and Jesus Ruiz filed suit against Malcolm J. Riggsbee, L.J. Rogers, Jr. Trucking Inc. a/k/a L. J. Rogers Trucking Inc., National Interstate Insurance Co., State of Louisiana Department of Transportation & Development on Sept. 11, 2009 in St. John the Baptist Parish District Court. The defendants removed the case to federal court in New Orleans on Sept. 13.

The accident occurred on Oct. 20, 2008, when the Vides vehicle was rear-ended by the defendant's 18-wheeler, causing the Vides vehicle to collide into another vehicle. Plaintiff Ruiz was a passenger in Vides' vehicle and both men suffered severe and debilitating injuries.

Riggsbee is accused of failing to see what he should have seen, failing to keep a good and careful lookout, failing to maintain reasonable and proper control of the vehicle, driving at a unreasonable speed, operating his vehicle in a careless and reckless manner.

The Louisiana Department of Transportation is accused of failing to warn of the upcoming road construction and failing to properly place the traffic cones to avoid driver confusion.

The plaintiffs are seeking damages for physical pain and suffering, mental pain and suffering, property damage, loss of use of vehicle, depreciation, rental expenses, medical expenses, loss of past earnings, loss of future earning capacity, permanent disability of the body, loss of consortium, penalties, court costs and attorney's fees.

Vides and Ruiz is represented by Edward J. Womac, Jr., Brian King, Matthew Sutton, Brian Branch, Jason Giles, Douglas J. Womac, Jr. and Christopher J. Williamson of Edward J. Womac & Associates in New Orleans.

U.S. District Judge Helen G. Berrigan is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:10-cv-03049

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