Trucker’s widow sues Pilot over truck stop death

The widow of a trucker who was killed in a truck stop parking lot in 2008 has filed a civil lawsuit against Pilot Travel Centers.

According to court documents, trucker George Taylor died on Aug. 23, 2008, after apparently being struck by a vehicle in a parking lot at the Pilot truck stop in Sioux Falls, SD. Taylor had parked near the truck diesel pumps late at night that day.

George Taylor's widow, Helen Taylor, of Webb City, MO, is suing for wrongful death, claiming that Pilot should have better lit the parking lot and should have included security cameras. The suit mentioned a previous incident in which truck driver Gregory Zuba was struck and killed by a truck at the same truck stop in November 2005, arguing that Zuba's death should have provided a wake-up call to the truck stop.

In a response filed in Federal Court in South Dakota, Pilot admits that Taylor appears to have died at its Sioux Falls truck stop but denies that its lighting near the truck diesel pumps was inadequate, and denies that it failed to provide "adequate security cameras." "The death of George Taylor and alleged damages of plaintiff were legally, directly and proximately caused solely by the actions of the unknown person or persons who struck George Taylor," Pilot's response says.

The suit asks for compensatory and punitive damages, as well as burial, funeral and other damages incurred by the Taylor family.

– By Charlie Morasch, staff writer
charlie_morasch@landlinemag.com

Another prime example of us being a sue happy society. While I feel for this woman's loss, she is only doing this for the money. Why would you sue the Pilot and not the driver of the other truck? Furthermore, every single Pilot, TA, Love's, Petro, and Flying J are lit up like a shit house in a fog storm. I will say that some of the parking areas are not always lit that well, but that isn't the point here.

I will also say that there isn't one truck stop that I have seen yet where there are parking spots next to th pumps. So, he obviously was not parked where he was supposed to be. Again, happens everyday out here as sometimes that is the only place to park.

The real issue here is the individual that hit this man. Having no other information than what I have here, I can almost guarantee that the driver was, a) not paying attention and b) driving way to fast.

There are jackasses all the time out here that fly through these truck stops and if someone were to walk out between trucks there is now way they would not be able to stop.

In closing I hope Pilot wins this case, but the way this country is running lately I am sure Pilot will end up paying because someone was incompetent on their property. Typical of today's society: Never take responsibility for your actions and always blame someone else.

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