Family sues Lyft, saying distracted driver crashed, killing mother and daughter

Family suing Lyft after 2015 deadly crash

Oct. 10, 2015 was supposed to be a celebratory night of fun for the Edwards family.

Son Clayton was getting married the next day, so they were getting ready to go to his rehearsal dinner at the Salt Lick on US 79 in Round Rock, near Dell Diamond.

The family spoke in great length about who would ride together, since there were too many people to fit into one car.

Mother Irene and father Rick Edwards had never taken a ride share service before, and were always wary of riding with a stranger. So daughter Kate and her fiance David Foy decided to ease the couple into the idea, by all riding together with an Uber driver.

Groom-to-be Clayton followed them in another car with his cousin.

Inside the Uber car, Foy remembers the Dave Mathews music on the stereo system. He remembers talking with his future in-laws about their 40 years of marriage, and Rick Edwards wedding band that cost $20. He remembers scrolling through Irene Edwards digital camera to look at photos taken during the past year.

He also remembers their Uber driver being very distracted. Foy told KVUE that the driver took a wrong turn, flew past a speed bump, and constantly checked the Lyft app on his phone for the next rider, since he was already using the Uber app for their ride.

As the caravan got ready to take a left turn from US 79, onto Harrell Parkway toward the Salt Lick, Clayton watched from the car behind them.

"I can see them blindly making a left turn not paying attention to other vehicles around them, and see another car coming, start saying to myself, oh god oh god, they're not turning, they're not stopping, they're not doing anything, and then it hit them and I sped out of the vehicle and saw them, the damage, and saw them, pass away in front of my eyes," said Clayton Edwards.

The crash killed Irene and Kate Edwards .

One died at the scene, the other taken to the hospital and later died there.

Clayton told KVUE he postponed the wedding for a year, but the hurt never went away.

"My broken father watching us get married and seeing two empty seats where my mother and sister would be sitting," said Clayton Edwards.

It's one of the reasons the family is suing Lyft, they don't want this to happen to someone again.

"It just can't happen, it's as simple as that, something needs to change," said Clayton Edwards.

Attorney Jason McMinn said they want ride share companies to work together, to prevent drivers from being able to open more than one company's app at a time.

"Just the most horrific thing, and all simply because the ride-share driver was trying to access his Lyft app at the same time he was trying to drop these passengers off who were on the Uber app," said McMinn.

McMinn said often times drivers open more than one app at a time to cut down on the time between passengers.

While they are seeking damages of more than $1 million, McMinn said they also just want to create awareness.

"When you get in a ride-share, I think it's very important that you communicate to your driver, 'hey focus on me and don't be focusing on picking up your next rider when you're about to drop me off,'" said McMinn.

"If I can prevent this from happening to someone else, it needs to happen," said Clayton Edwards.

Since the wreck, Lyft has changed the app and won't let drivers open it, while still using another ride share app.

The Edwards family said if this was done before the wreck, Kate and Irene might still be alive.

Lyft sent KVUE this statement tonight:

"We are deeply saddened to hear about this tragic incident and our thoughts are with those involved."

The company also told KVUE that even though the driver was set up through Lyft to be a driver, he had never actually given a ride.

The family already agreed on a "substantial" settlement with Uber.

Now they said the ultimate goal is to create awareness of this dangerous issue.

© 2017 KVUE-TV


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment