Lawsuits against Kentucky trucker allege he was on duty for 45 straight hours

By Land Line staff | 10/22/2015

A quartet of lawsuits filed against Kentucky trucker Benjamin Brewer and his employer Cool Runnings Express seek more than $30 million for wrongful death and personal injury stemming from a six-person fatal crash in June.

Brewer was driving a 2007 Peterbilt at 7:10 p.m., June 25, northbound on Interstate 75 in Hamilton County, Tenn., when he slammed into slow-moving traffic, killing six people and injuring 12 others.

Brewer has been formally charged with six counts of vehicular manslaughter, four counts of reckless aggravated assault, and one count each of driving under the influence of narcotics, speeding, and making false reports about his duty status.

According to reports, Brewer tested positive for drugs after the wreck and was found to have violated federal commercial hours-of-service regulations leading up to it. Brewer had been on duty for 45 hours straight before the crash.

At least four of the crash victims or their estates have filed suit in U.S. district court for wrongful death and personal injury. Three of the cases were consolidated on Oct. 20. A fourth case, filed Oct. 15 by the family of another man who died as a result of the crash, is awaiting the judge’s determination to decide whether to consolidate it with the other cases.

Brewer is being held without bail in Hamilton County Jail pending a criminal trial.

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