What a load of bananas: Firm's 'bombshell' after crash
A FAMILY business must pay more money after a road smash wrecked a load of bananas and the trailers carrying them.
Trailers that Toowoomba business Peter Cusato Transport hired were wrecked in a messy 2013 crash at Hatton Vale.
The Cusato firm was not to blame for the crash - and has been battling trailer rental company Lyschrome over insurance costs.
Last month, Brisbane District Court ordered Cusato to pay $292,000 to Lyschrome, formerly JAT Transport.
Lyschrome's predecessor JAT owned one Maxi-CUBE refrigerated trailer and leased another.
In a judgment published this week, Judge Brian Devereaux has ordered Cusato to pay $80,144 in interest.
But Mr Cusato was not ready to give up the fight, saying he would be looking into his legal options next week.
"The whole story is ... we were never at fault in the accident,” he told NewsRegional on Friday.
He said it was a "bombshell” to find out "four and a half years of accrued interest” would be passed on to him.
Cusato's insurance company covered costs of the lost bananas - but not a bill for wrecked trailers.
Mr Cusato earlier told the Queensland Times that complicated insurance clauses meant he believed he properly insured the trailers.
He said he was "put on the block for an accident” his driver didn't cause and insurers "passed the buck onto the next person who might have a dollar”.
The Cusato employee was driving the B-double with its trailers loaded with bananas from Tully on the Cassowary Coast.
The crash also had consequences for banana farmers.
The court earlier heard from Lyschrome's John Azzopardi, who said farmers were contacting him asking when they would be paid.
He in turn asked Mr Cusato when he would get insurance money - and said he was told "Oh, soon, soon.”
The court heard JAT had a verbal and written agreement with the Cusato company.
Lyschrome claimed damages for breach of an agreement, seeking interest and costs.
Mr Cusato told the court the agreement was so uncertain that it did not properly identify the parties' rights and obligations.
But Judge Devereaux said Lyschrome made out its case.
On June 16, he ordered Cusato Transport to "make good the damage to the trailers which occurred while in its care”.
Lyschrome was approached for comment on Friday.