(AFP) US actor Tracy Morgan was released from a medical rehabilitation center Saturday after suffering multiple injuries last month, and is suing Walmart, whose truck rear-ended his stretch limousine.
The crash on a New Jersey highway killed Morgan’s friend and fellow comic James McNair and injured three other passengers in the vehicle.
Morgan, 45, was critically injured in the crash, suffering broken ribs, a broken nose and a broken leg.
“Tracy has been released from the rehabilitation center and will continue his recovery efforts at home with an aggressive outpatient program,” Morgan’s publicist Lewis Kay said in a statement.
“He asked me to pass along his sincerest gratitude to everyone who has helped him get to this point. He would also appreciate some privacy during this crucial point in his recovery.”
The accident occurred in the early hours of June 7, when the Emmy-nominated former star of “30 Rock” and “Saturday Night Live” alumnus was heading home from a stand-up performance in the East Coast state of Delaware.
The Walmart truck driver was named as Kevin Roper, whose shift had begun more than 13 hours before the accident, which the suit said was in violation of US transport regulations.
Morgan filed suit against Walmart on Thursday in US District Court in New Jersey.
“Walmart was careless and negligent in the ownership and operation of its motor vehicle, which caused Mr Morgan to suffer severe personal injuries,” the complaint read.
“As a direct and proximate result of the physical injuries sustained by Mr Morgan in the collision, he has been incapacitated from pursuing his usual employment and other activities, may be left with disabilities that will in the future similarly incapacitate him and cause him pain and suffering, and may require medical treatment.”
The suit said that Roper was so fatigued after a more than 700-mile (1,126-kilometer) commute to work that he fell asleep behind the wheel of the truck and crashed into Morgan’s limo.
And the truck’s sophisticated collision-avoidance systems, which automatically brake the truck when they sense slower traffic, failed to function.
“Walmart knew or should have known that one of the truck’s most important safety features was compromised,” Morgan’s filing said.
The retail giant called the accident a “terrible tragedy.”
“We are deeply sorry that one of our trucks was involved,” it added in a statement.
“As we’ve said, we’re cooperating fully in the ongoing investigation. We know it will take some time to resolve all of the remaining issues as a result of the accident, but we’re committed to doing the right thing for all involved.”