Plaintiff alleged, amongst other things that the trucking company was negligent in failing to install side under-ride guards on its trailers.
The defendants argued, as they did not manufacture or design the trailer, they had no liability. The defendats moved to dismiss the allegation under a 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss which deals with frivolous litigation.
The court held that it would not dismiss the case. The court finding that the plaintiffs allegations, if true, that the trucking company purchases large number of trailers and is in a position to request design features such as side under-ride guards wopuld be sufficient to establish a duty to the palintiff. Moreover, the plaintiff alleged that the company knew that the space under the trailer is such that any car involved in a wreck would have serious injuries to the passengers.
The plaintiffs therefore established that a duty was owed by the defendants to the plaintiffs sufficient to overrule a Motion to Dismiss.
Gregory S. Becker, et al v. Wabash National Corp., U.S. Dist. Ct., S.D. Texas, No, C-07-115 (2007)