Professional, Polite, Prepared to Kill

Lawsuit: Woman claims IdleAire unit killed spouse, poisoned her

A Florida woman contends a Knoxville firm’s technology, designed to help save the environment, killed her husband and poisoned her.

Nancy Younger has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against IdleAire Technologies Corp. alleging the firm’s window power unit piped deadly carbon monoxide fumes into the cab of the tractor-trailer she and her late husband, William Younger, were sleeping in while parked at a Knoxville truck stop last year.

The lawsuit, prepared by Miami attorney Don A. Russo and filed in Knox County Circuit Court, seeks as much as $18 million in damages for both permanent and debilitating injuries she suffered and the fatal injuries her husband sustained as a result of what the document alleges was IdleAire’s defective product. More from

IdleAire pipes air conditioning into the truck’s cab via a large tube hooked to the passenger side window with a special $10 adapter. They also offer television and internet access. IdleAire filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy May 12. More on IdleAire from

At around $2.18 an hour for basic services – plus additional charges for services like movies on demand or wireless Internet – the idea was that drivers would save money by turning off the diesel-gobbling engines on their tractor-trailers during government-mandated rest periods.

But company officials recently have acknowledged that use of the devices has been slow to gain widespread support, citing a difficulty in changing truck drivers’ attitudes toward idling their engines.

The company drew support from some well-connected backers over the years, but the support didn’t translate into profits. Knox County Mayor Mike Ragsdale bought $10,000 worth of company stock in 2004, while one of the company’s directors is Thomas “Mack” McLarty III, a boyhood friend and one-time chief of staff to former President Bill Clinton.

In a filing Monday, the company said it had been awarded $55.6 million in grants from state and federal agencies aiming to encourage technologies that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save fuel, and had collected approximately $25.1 million worth of grants through the end of last year. The Knoxville Transportation Planning Organization has given the company about $3 million in grants.

The company was never profitable, though, and in a filing CEO Michael Crabtree said IdleAire had a net loss of $93.4 million in 2007, on net revenues of $37.2 million.

There are many different reasons truckers do not like IdleAire. The units take up parking spaces at truckstops that, many times, are at a premium. It can get expensive at $2.18 per hour, plus additional costs for extra satellite television channels and wireless internet.

Feel free to add your comments on IdleAire, it’s demise and the lawsuit. Remember — this is a family-friendly blog… your mom, wife or kids could read your comments.


May 19, 2008 - Posted by | trucking | , ,


  1. this woman is a wacko and her lawyer obviously never checked out how rediculous her claim is.

    Comment by dah | June 18, 2008 | Reply

  2. I do not believe that this happened. I feel it could if not properly placed in the window. This customer should get what she deserves, every penny. IdleAire is now trying to sell out so they can get out from under all of their poor infrastructure and management problems. Not to mention they hire way too many employees for the job. The company was just spending too much and used way too many resources without a lot of sites that were readily accessible to its users.

    Comment by Mike | June 30, 2008 | Reply

  3. One thing IdleAire should have done was stayed low on their prices. The raised price they just initiated is nothing but price gouging to the drivers. Maybe they should lower it to $1.75/hr like they know they can function at. And come on, who are they kidding, every trucker that goes cross country or that stops at a TA or Petro-which is also TA, knows what IdleAire is. IdleAire as a company should have downsized the number of “sales” reps and used that money toward more sites. It just would make sense. IdleAire SUCKS!

    Comment by Mike | June 30, 2008 | Reply

  4. The company just took the Gov’t for more money. How is this legal? How can a company file for bankruptcy then have the it put up for auction. But the same original investors buy it back with a government grant??? What is wrong with this country?? Let’s just pour out cash to some failing ridiculous company that is going to fade into the background and have the whole thing turn into Enron. But on a smaller scale. Did you know that Park and View, the previous type of this service but on a much lesser scale, went down the tubes and a majority of the IdleAire main corporate people are ex-park and view employees? The company went under from corporate peoples embezzling the moneys from the Park and View. It just seems to me that IdleAire is losing a whole lot of money. Where is it all going? Pockets? Well thanks to our government this company can just invest more into their own pockets. Not making their original cause the main goal. IdleAire needs to be completely audited from head to toe and every corporate employee needs the same treatment. This just seems nothing more to me and the public, than a front for unlawful, personal monetary gain.

    Comment by Anti-IdleAire | August 23, 2008 | Reply

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