GRETNA – A Metairie tow truck driver is being sued for allegedly causing an accident with a sheriff’s deputy while towing a vehicle with its owner inside.

Alfred J. Woodruff filed suit against Greater New Orleans Expressway Commission, Philip Bonura III, Newell Normand in his capacity as Sheriff of the Parish of Jefferson and Deputy Keidrick J. Richardson in the 24th Judicial District Court on March 27.

Woodruff claims he was driving his truck while towing a trailer on Causeway Boulevard in Metairie when his vehicle suddenly quit functioning and he coasted to a stop on the shoulder of the elevated road near a construction project.

The plaintiff alleges he spoke to contractors working on the project and told them that he would contact a tow truck, but they told him it would have to moved immediately and called Bonura. Woodruff asserts that Bonura told him he would move the truck and trailer off of the roadway to a safe place where he could call his own driver. The plaintiff claims that after the defendant hooked a tow strap to the truck and trailer and began to tow the vehicle he accelerated to a high rate of speed before colliding with a Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s office car driven by Richardson. Woodruff claims after Bonura's tow truck struck the deputy's car it caused a chain reaction in which his truck collided with the rear of the tow truck and his trailer collided with the back of his truck. The plaintiff asserts that both his truck and trailer were total losses in the accident.

The defendant is accused of failing to keep his vehicle under proper control, traveling at an excessive rate of speed, failing to yield a right of way, failing to keep a proper lookout and see what should have been seen and towing plaintiff’s vehicle in careless and unsafe manner.

An unspecified amount in damages is sought for property damage, towing expenses, expenses for substitute vehicles, loss of use, damages, personal injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, disability, physical pain and suffering, mental pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life.

Woodruff is represented by attorney Steven K. Faulkner of Harahan.

The case has been assigned to Division O Judge Ross P. LaDart.

Case no. 725-331.

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