ROGERSVILLE - Hawkins County was named as the defendant in a $125,000 lawsuit that was filed last week by a man who alleges that overgrown vegetation on the side of a county intersection contributed to his motorcycle accident last year.
The lawsuit was filed June 27 in Hawkins County Circuit Court by Rogersville attorney Doug Jenkins on behalf of plaintiff Walter Lee O'Quinn, 51, 1250 Hickory Cove Road, Rogersville.
The lawsuit alleges that on July 1, 2006, O'Quinn was driving his motorcycle south on Bray Road approaching the intersection of Stanley Valley Road north of Surgoinsville.
"As (O'Quinn) approached the intersection his vision of oncoming traffic was impaired by high weeds, vegetation, brush, trees, etc.," Jenkins stated in the complaint. "As a result (O'Quinn) pulled into the pathway of an oncoming vehicle."
The lawsuit alleges that O'Quinn suffered serious and disabling injuries that have resulted in permanent disability and impaired his ability to work and enjoy life.
The lawsuit also alleges that Hawkins County had notice of the high vegetation and dangerous situation and failed to take proper action to correct it.
"Sometime prior to the accident an employee or employees of Hawkins County did undertake to mow, upon the plan of the Hawkins County road superintendent, the sides of Bray Road at and around its intersection with Stanley Valley Road, and/or the sides of Stanley Valley Road..." Jenkins stated in the complaint. "The employees mowed in such a negligent and careless manner that he or she left standing after mowing such (vegetation) as to obscure and hide from sight the stop sign controlling traffic on Bray Road at its intersection with Stanley Valley Road."
Hawkins County Mayor Crockett Lee said Tuesday he is aware of O'Quinn's accident and lawsuit, but he is not in a position to comment on the lawsuit. Lee said the lawsuit would likely be placed into the hands of attorneys with the county's insurance provider.
No court dates have yet been set on this lawsuit.