Family of Idaho Trucker Crushed By Silage Sues Dairy

August 19, 2009

The widow and father of a trucker crushed to death when a pile of silage fell on top of him is accusing the Idaho dairy where the accident occurred of negligence.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Chad Thompson, 30, who was killed March 7, 2008, when part of a silage pile at least 40 feet high fell on top of his truck.

The lawsuit filed recently in 5th District Court contends the owners of 4-Bros Dairy, northwest of Shoshone, were negligent in stacking and maintaining the pile.

Thompson’s widow, Angela Thompson, of Prosser, Wash., and his father, Mark Thompson, of Astoria, Ore., claim the dairy manager told Thompson to park his truck in front of the pile. Thompson, who was driving for Hermiston, Ore.,-based Medelez Trucking Company, was delivering apple silage to the dairy.

Dairy officials “directed Chad Thompson to the location and failed to warn him of the dangerous/hazardous condition,” according to the lawsuit, reported by the Times-News.

Officials from 4-Bros Dairy did not immediately return telephone messages left by The Associated Press.

But Andrew Fitzgerald, the dairy’s secretary treasurer, said last year that Thompson had been warned against parking too close to the pile.

A dairy employee “physically got out there and told him to move his truck right away,” Fitzgerald told the newspaper in June 2008.

The dairy was cited by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and agreed to pay a $1,700 fine for safety violations.

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