JJ Richards' not liable in rock and motorbike crash claim
GARBAGE disposal company JJ Richards has succeeded in being awarded court costs for defending against allegations an object fell from one of their trucks and caused an accident.
Three of JJ Richards' central Queensland drivers were named in a lawsuit that was heard in the Supreme Court in Rockhampton this year.
Central Queensland business owner and boilermaker Glenn Stuart Garside sought a million dollars in damages after a concrete-coloured object, about the size of half a house brick, flew up and hit his right knee while he was riding his BMW motorbike on the Gregory Highway on November 25, 2014.
Mr Garside, 35, told the Supreme Court in Rockhampton on August 30 that at the time he was travelling behind an Emerald Coaches bus which was behind a JJ Richards truck.
Mr Garside said he saw JJ Richards written on the side of the truck as the three vehicles travelled around a bend.
He said the Emerald Coaches driver had pulled towards the middle of the road to see if it was safe for the bus to overtake, but pulled back to the left.
Mr Garside said he then manoeuvred to check to overtake and while towards the centre of the road saw a concrete-coloured item about the size of half a house brick 800mm off the road behind the truck "slightly to the right of the centre".
He said it was moving as if it had fallen and was moving forward, rather than being flicked back.
Mr Garside said the object bounced on the road twice before grazing the motorbike fender and then his knee, which led to his foot dislodging from the peg.
He said he pulled up and lay on the grass due to the pain in his knee.
Mr Garside said he rode straight back to Emerald, holding his injured leg out straight.
Barrister Richard Morton, who represented JJ Richards' drivers and insurance company in the trial, claimed it was a SUEZ truck - another waste management company operating in Central Queensland - and whose trucks are also green like JJ Richards trucks.
Justice Graeme Crow handed down a decision on December 11 that led the claim against JJ Richards being dismissed and ordered the Nominal Defendant pay $723,761.64 to Mr Garside.
On December 20, Justice Crow handed down a further order - that the Nominal Defendant also pay Mr Garside's costs for the proceedings and that of the JJ Richards drivers.