Family files lawsuit over Floyd County intersection

By Mike Bunge

CHARLES CITY, Iowa – After another death at a Floyd County intersection, the family of deceased motorcycle rider are filing a wrongful death claim against the State of Iowa.

T.J. Houdek was killed when his motorcycle was hit by a semi on July 17, 2016 at the intersection of Highway 218/18 and Quarry Road, south of Floyd. Troy Reams of Greene was killed at that same intersection on Wednesday morning after he crashed into a semi.

Thomas and Diane Houdek, the parents of T.J., announced in May they were taking legal action against the state for failing to do anything to make the intersection safer. Their attorney, David Skilton, tells KIMT that case was brought to the State Tort Claim Board and was rejected.

That led to the filing of a wrongful death lawsuit in Floyd County District Court on Thursday. “No one needs to face a tragedy over this trap and everyone needs to be warned about this dangerous intersection,” state Thomas and Diane Houdek.

The lawsuit claims the State of Iowa and the Iowa Department of Transportation failed to design an intersection that was safe, failed to warn the public about the dangers, and failed to take reasonable precautions and safety measures.

In announcing their lawsuit, the Houdeks call for the speed limit in the area to be reduced to 45 miles per hour and the painting of solid lines on the highway to prevent any lane changes at the intersection.