Cannon Express Trial Set

by Talk Business & Politics ([email protected]) 105 views 

A $20 million lawsuit filed against Cannon Express Inc. of Springdale is scheduled for trial in September in Lufkin, Texas.

The lawsuit is a consolidation of three separate suits filed after a May 1996 accident in which a Cannon Express driver and a woman were killed. The company driver apparently had a heart attack while driving and collided with another tractor-trailer rig. The accident created a fire that killed the driver, the woman and seriously injured the woman’s daughter.

The three lawsuits originally were filed against the company by the woman’s husband and her two brothers.

“I guess we don’t have any choice,” Dean Cannon, founder and president of the company, says of the trial. “It was a tragic, unavoidable accident, but the company did nothing wrong.”

Cannon says his company couldn’t pay a multimillion dollar judgement. The company maintains liability insurance with a limit of $1 million for each claim.

“We never imagined a lawsuit of that size,” Cannon says.

If a jury finds his company responsible and awards the claim that has been requested, Cannon Express would be forced to use federal bankruptcy laws to continue operating, he says.

The company settled a $700,000 lawsuit earlier this year that was filed after an accident involving one of the company’s drivers. The suit was filed in Phoenix in July 1995 by a man who lost a leg in the accident. Although the details of the settlement aren’t available, Cannon paid a $150,000 deductible on the insurance policy.