Second Lawsuit Filed Against TOTE
The family of Jeremie Riehm, the third mate on the lost El Faro, have filed a wrongful death lawsuit against TOTE Maritime. Riehm is survived by his wife and two children.
Jacksonville attorney Steve Pajcic is representing the Riehm family. This is the second lawsuit filed against TOTE since the El Faro disappeared after getting caught in Hurricane Joaquin’s path on October 1.
Last week, attorney Willie E Gary filed a $100 million lawsuit on behalf of the estate of Lonnie Jordan, who worked as a cook for TOTE for more than 13 years.
"We hope to get to the bottom of this," Gary said. “We are at war now. Tote Services, negligently permitted the El Faro to sail out to sea despite being in an unseaworthy condition to handle the conditions of a violent storm."
Pajcic says the Riehm family has yet to specify how much will be sought in damages. Pajcic also stated that he wanted to settle before suing, but when he asked TOTE about what insurance they had on the ship, he received no response.
Tote Maritime announced it has create a relief fund for the crews’ families. There were 28 Americans and five Polish nationals aboard the vessel. A National Transportation Safety Board investigation is under way and is coordinating the search for the missing ship.