Articles Tagged with truck accident attorney

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An Illinois city recently agreed to a $4.75 million settlement to a woman in a sport utility vehicle who was struck by an on-duty city worker driving a garbage truck. It was reported the garbage truck driver was traveling eastbound, crossed over the double yellow lines on the road and side-swiped victim’s vehicle, which was traveling westbound. She spun and was struck by another vehicle.garbagetruck

The 33-year-old victim explained to The Chicago Tribune that her left leg was broken and she remains unable to move her left hand. Her attorneys explained in her personal injury lawsuit that she had suffered serious and permanent injuries that will not only cost her dearly for medical expenses, but also have rendered her unable to carry out certain functions of daily living, such as returning to her job as a home care worker and cashier.

Accidents involving garbage trucks are sometimes described in media reports as being “freak” occurrences. The reality is, they are more common than one might think. One study reported by the New York Daily News revealed that over a three-year stretch, garbage trucks killed an average of 24 pedestrians per 100 million miles driven. Compare that to taxis, which were involved in 6 fatal accidents per 100 million miles driven. Researchers cited potential design flaws in trucks that may make it difficult for garbage truck drivers to see.  Continue reading →

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Expert witness testimony is sometimes critical to trucking accident lawsuits, which can be some of the most complex types of injury cases. These large vehicles cause some of the most horrific crashes on our roads, resulting in serious injury and death – and making the stakes in these lawsuits very high. truck accident lawyer

As noted in F.S. 90.702 of Florida’s Evidence Code, testimony by experts is allowed, but not without restriction. It can be entered where scientific, technical or other specialized knowledge will assist the trier of fact in understanding the evidence or in determining a fact in issue. A witness may be considered a qualified expert by their knowledge, training, education, skill and/ or experience. They can use this background to form on opinion or outline conclusions – but only if the testimony is:

  • Based on sufficient data/ facts;
  • The product of reliable principles and methods AND;
  • Has been formulated with the applied principles and methods of the witnesses’s expertise reliably to the facts of the case.

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Typically in the event of a work-related accident, a worker’s only recompense is workers’ compensation. There is an exception if there is third-party liability (i.e., someone other than the employer was at-fault). But if the work-related injury was the result of a motor vehicle accident and if the employer paid for auto insurance coverage, it is possible employees might also be able to pursue a claim from that insurer for the injuries. It will depend heavily on the terms of the policy.truck accident lawyer

Recently in a case decided by the Oklahoma Supreme Court, the question was whether an employer’s uninsured motorist carrier is entitled to subrogation on an under-insured (third-party) at-fault driver’s assets – including excess insurance coverage – for the amount previously paid to the injured party. The court answered no.

The case illustrates how complex these claims can be when they involve commercial vehicles (which tend to cause more damage, and thus, more severe injuries) and large companies.  Continue reading →

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Last year, the number of vehicle recalls in the U.S. hit another record, with 51.2 million vehicles involved in 868 separate recalls, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The year before, there were 63 million vehicles named in 803 recalls. Many of those are passenger vehicles driven by the public, and those are certainly of great concern – not just to the vehicle owners and passengers, but to all of us who share the road. truck

However, one aspect of these recalls that gets less attention – but is now less alarming – is that of commercial truck recalls. A typical commercial truck can weigh 80,000 pounds. In many cases, when tractor-trailers or other large vehicles crash, there are injuries to multiple parties. These are more likely to be serious accidents that result in death. Even so, not all commercial vehicle owners respond to manufacturer recall notices.

Recently, a recall of 16,000 large trucks made by Volvo Trucks North America reached 100 percent completion rate within 18 months of being announced – a feat writers at Trucks.com declared as “rare” and “atypical.” The average commercial vehicle recall, the publication reports, results in only 70 percent of covered vehicles being repaired. Anthony Foxx, U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary, called the Volvo response one of “extraordinary effort,” following the manufacturer’s discovery that there were four separate instances of sudden steering failure.  Continue reading →

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One of the greatest dangers in a Fort Myers trucking accident is the risk of a smaller vehicle ending up underneath a large commercial trailer. So serious was this problem that in 1998, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) implemented a requirement that vehicles weighing 10,000 pounds or more and manufactured after 1998 must be equipped with underride guards. These steel features are supposed to prevent other vehicles from ending up underneath a large truck, which is associated with catastrophic injuries. truck

The underride guard requirement only pertains to certain trucks and even then, only to the rear. The issue still affects a significant number of cases. For example, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reports that all the advances in modern vehicle technology are not effective if a vehicle ends up under a truck. The way most underride guards are designed, a passenger vehicle that rear-ends a semi-truck at an angle can still end up under the truck.

In 2011, of the more than 2,200 passenger vehicle occupant deaths in large truck accidents nationally, 260 died when the front of their vehicle struck the rear of a truck. It’s not clear exactly how many of those instances involved underride, but a 2011 study by IIHS found that of 115 fatal truck crashes, about half indicated severe or catastrophic underride damage.  Continue reading →

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Insurance companies have a responsibility to their insureds and those harmed by their insureds to timely pay fair sums for legitimate claims. When they fail to do this, they may be sued for acting in bad faith. truck4

F.S. 624.155 allows direct legal action against insurers who violate this tenant, and a finding in favor of the plaintiff may result in compensation for triple the amount of original damages.

Usually in auto accident cases, we represent injured parties who are either seeking UM/UIM (uninsred/underinsured motorist) benefits against their own insurance companies, or have been granted rights to pursue the insurer directly after securing a judgment against a defendant insured.  Continue reading →

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Two passengers who sat in the back seat of a Crown Victoria had three strikes against them. chuckhole

In the first place, they were in a vehicle that had not been properly maintained, and thus suffered mechanical problems. In the second place, the driver who had been operating the vehicle was allegedly impaired by marijuana, which may have clouded his faculties as to how to appropriately respond to the situation. And in the third place, they were on a highway at night when this all happened, which put them at greater risk of being struck by fast-moving traffic.

Sadly, that’s exactly what happened. The driver of the stalled vehicle didn’t move the vehicle off the highway. Nor did he put his flashers on or give other motorists and indication the lane was blocked. An approaching truck failed to move out of the right lane, and struck the vehicle from behind. Both vehicles caught fire.