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Today's Pickup: Washington Supreme Court Rules State Not At Fault For Trucking Accident That Felled I-5 Bridge


Good Day,

The Washington State Supreme Court held in a split decision that the state is not liable for a trucking accident that caused the Interstate 5 bridge over the Skagit River to collapse in 2013, the Associated Press reported.  

Instead, the two trucking companies involved in the crash are on the hook to pay for the damage, according to media reports. 

Washington State sued Mullen Trucking and Motorways Transport for $17 million, after a Mullen truck carrying an oversized load hit the overhead beams on the bridge. The northern part of the span collapsed, and three people in two vehicles fell into the river, barely escaping serious injury.

The companies countersued, and claimed the state should have to pay some of the cost for repairing the bridge.

On October 31, the Court ruled in the state's favor, citing various laws that protect the state from lawsuits when vehicles hit highway structures. 

Washington state policy holds that vehicle owners or operators are responsible for ensuring their vehicles can pass under a structure. The court also ruled that "no fault could be allocated to the state" as a result of damages caused by an oversized vehicle.

Did you know?

A record 306,000 freight tons of wind turbine blades, towers and other parts moved through Duluth, Minnesota in 2019.The volumes beat the most recent figure for wind parts, eclipsing 2008's 302,000 freight tons.

via Transport Topics 


"We've been in an industrial recession for over a year."

– Bradley Jacobs, CEO of XPO Logistics.  (CNBC.com)

In other news

Santa Ana winds knock over 18-wheelers on California highway

The gale force winds toppled multiple 18-wheel trucks on stretches of highway in San Bernardino County, California.  (IdahoStatesman)

Unmanned aerial vehicles to hitch rides on buses

Delivery drones could land on public transport to extend their range. (NewScientist)

Nordstrom gets a handle on omnichannel fulfillment

The company's stores are becoming fulfillment centers in addition to serving customers on the floor. (SupplyChainDive)

Conoco to fight Alaska tax campaign on legacy oil fields

ConocoPhillips plans to resist a campaign aimed at hiking taxes on old Alaskan oil fields.  (Bloombergtax) 

Final thoughts,

The USDA's hemp ruling resolves some, but not all, of the confusion around the legal status of hemp in Idaho, where in a widely publicized case a trucker was arrested for bringing hemp across state lines.

The new rule does allow hemp to be transported through the state, but it does not allow people to grow hemp in Idaho.The state remains one of three, along with South Dakota and Mississippi, that does not allow hemp to be grown under state law. 

The Idaho Legislature is expected to once again take up the issue of hemp legalization during the 2020 session. Previous attempts to legalize hemp have failed.

Hammer down, everyone!

Image by Peter H from Pixabay

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