- Associated Press - Monday, June 25, 2018

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - A Wichita man has filed a lawsuit against Pizza Hut alleging the food company’s delivery practices are at least partly responsible for a crash that killed his mother and injured his grandmother.

Michael Capps filed the wrongful death and negligence lawsuit against Pizza Hut earlier this month in Sedgwick County District Court. The lawsuit alleges the popular pizza chain’s promise to get customers “hot pizza quickly” is responsible for Courtney Clodfelter’s speedy driving when he rear-ended Karen and Jaunita Capps in February, the Wichita Eagle reported .

The women had just left Resthaven cemetery and were stopped along a roadside in Wichita waiting for a funeral procession to pass when they were hit by a minivan and pushed into an electric pole. Karen Capps, 59, died at the site, and her mother, 86, survived with six broken ribs.

Clodfelter told first responders he was driving the minivan to deliver pizzas for Pizza Hut when the crash happened. Clodfelter “swerved from one lane into another lane” quickly “to avoid stopped traffic and the funeral procession,” the lawsuit said.

Pizza Hut requires “drivers to drive rapidly to deliver hot fresh pizzas in order to make a higher profit in a shorter amount of time and deliver as many pizzas an hour as humanly possible,” according to the lawsuit.

Pizza Hut of Southeast Kansas didn’t return phone messages seeking comment. Attempts by the newspaper to reach Clodfelter were unsuccessful.

No charges have been filed in connection with the crash or resulting fatality. Police hadn’t presented the case to the district attorney’s office yet, office spokesman Dan Dillon said last week.

The Wichita lawsuit isn’t the first to involve crashes with pizza delivery drivers. Pizza Hut agreed on a $9 million settlement in a 2009 crash in Las Vegas that nearly killed a motorcyclist. A Florida jury awarded more than $10 million in 2016 to the widow of a fire chief killed in a crash with a Domino’s Pizza delivery driver.

Michael Capps is the Republican candidate for the Kansas House seat in District 85.

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Information from: The Wichita (Kan.) Eagle, http://www.kansas.com

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