UPDATE: Two more lawsuits filed in Woodmore bus crash - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports


UPDATE: Two more lawsuits filed in Woodmore bus crash

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UPDATE: In the aftermath of Chattanooga's deadly school bus crash, more Woodmore families are bringing lawsuits against the driver and the bus company.

Five suits have been filed so far. Two of them were filed late Tuesday night.

The most recent lawsuits do not list a dollar amount because the children are still recovering from their injuries, and their medical costs are still rising.

Attorneys C. Mark Warren and John Mark Griffin represent two Woodmore families who know they're lucky their children are still alive.

"They're very grateful right now that they had a Thanksgiving with the family," said Warren. "They're very grateful right now that they have a Christmas coming up."

A 7-year-old boy and 10-year-old girl were among the students riding Bus #366 when it flipped over, killing six children.

"They are still very traumatized. Very traumatized," Warren said of his clients.

The two children are still recovering from their injuries. They're back at school, but not back to normal.

"It's going to be a traumatic event they'll remember forever," said attorney John Mark Griffin. "They're old enough to remember, and young enough to really have an impact and effect on their lives."

The bus driver, 24-year-old Johnthony Walker, and the bus company, Durham School Services, are named in the suit.

"Durham hired an inexperienced driver. The extent of his training was none, basically," Griffin said.

The suit claims Durham officials had knowledge Walker was involved in a previous wreck, that his license was suspended once before, and were aware of several recent complaints -- but still allowed Walker behind the wheel.

Warren & Griffin said they're still investigating claims against Hamilton County, which could be named in future lawsuits.

"We are going to be at every hearing for the bus driver, us and the families," Warren said. "We are going to be there wearing t-shirts, with balloons, we're gonna be out front, making sure that this issue does not fade away."

A petition to put seatbelts on buses will be presented to legislators next month. To learn more, click here.

PREVIOUS STORY: Two additional lawsuits were filed Tuesday after the Woodmore school bus crash that claimed six lives last month.

Attorney C. Mark Warren filed the suits in Hamilton County Circuit Court on behalf of two parents and their children (ages 7 and 10, respectively), who were seriously injured in the wreck.

Durham School Services, the bus driver Johnthony Walker, and National Express, LLC are all named in the suits.

The lawsuits allege Walker was driving in a “negligent and careless fashion” when he lost control of the bus. The bus flipped over and struck a tree and utility pole in front of a house.

READ MORE | Parent of surviving student in Woodmore crash files lawsuit

Warren also claims Durham did not properly train or discipline its drivers.

A specific dollar amount was not listed in the lawsuits, which request a jury to award “an amount in the sound discretion of the jury,” plus all court costs, discretionary costs, and any further relief to the plaintiffs.

READ MORE | Third lawsuit filed in fatal Woodmore bus crash


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