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Crash victims' families file lawsuits alleging negligence by guardrail companies

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The families of three people killed in Tennessee last year when their vehicles crashed into a controversial type of guardrail end filed lawsuits Wednesday blaming the "unreasonably dangerous and defective" Lindsay X-LITE system for the deaths.

The families of Jacob Davison and Lauren Beuttel filed a wrongful death lawsuit in the Cumberland County Circuit Court; the son of Wilbert Byrd filed another in Hamilton County. They are represented by Ted Leopold of Cohen Milstein.

READ MORE | TDOT bills Tennessee girl $3K for guardrail that killed her

Both lawsuits seek compensatory damages by claiming the creators and manufacturers of the X-LITE — Valmont Industries, Lindsay Corporation and their subsidiaries — failed to design a safe product, then didn't disclose "known problems and defects."

The lawsuits also allege the guardrails involved in the two crashes were improperly installed by Cumberland Guardrail due to Lindsay's and Valmont's insufficient instructions — a claim that echoes one of the Tennessee Department of Transportation's problems with the product. Cumberland "knew or should have known" the guardrails weren't properly installed, the lawsuits read.

Read more from our news partners at the Knoxville News Sentinel.

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