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Semi driver, distribution company facing lawsuit for February injury crash

Pocatello

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Shane Warr

POCATELLO — A woman severely injured in a Feb. 3 crash on Interstate 15 has filed a civil lawsuit against the driver of the semi that crashed into her vehicle, and the distribution company that employed him.

Debbie Akers and her husband Andy have filed a lawsuit against Shane Warr, the driver of the semi who was allegedly drunk when he drove from the northbound lanes of I-15 through the southbound lanes striking Akers’ 2015 Chevrolet Suburban. TEC Distribution of Idaho, LLC, the company that Warr was employed with, is also listed as a defendant in the lawsuit.

The lawsuit alleges TEC should have been aware of Warr’s previous DUI in 2016. The company is also held liable, according to the lawsuit, for allowing a driver with medical issues to operate its equipment. During the criminal investigation, Warr told officers that previous injuries and sleep apnea made him unable to sleep, which contributed to the crash.

Related | Falling asleep and alcohol contributed to 3-vehicle crash, police say

Akers suffered “severe and permanent injuries,” the lawsuit says. Those injuries include three fractures to her right femur, requiring a steel rod, fractures to her lumbar spine, with the L1 to L5 vertebrae requiring fusion, and injuries to both shoulders, which will require surgeries once Akers’ doctors decide she can physically tolerate further operations.

Her injuries required transportation from Portneuf Medical Center to the University of Utah Hospital in Salt Lake City for “specialized care.”

She is currently confined to a bed, the documents say.

Because Akers is unable to continue her duties as a teacher at American Falls High School, she is requesting compensation for lost wages, past and future, along with past and future medical expenses. The family has also requested compensation for mental and physical hardships created by the injuries suffered in the crash.

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A court date has not yet been set, but both Warr and TEC were served official court summons on March 18.

In addition to the civil lawsuit, Warr has been charged with felony aggravated DUI and could face up to 15 years in prison and $5,000 in fines due to the injuries caused to Akers. The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has also served a federal order to Warr ordering him not to operate any commercial motor vehicle.

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