Articles Posted in Trucking Accident

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Safety regulators in Florida shuttered a large, third-party commercial drivers license testing company after an investigation uncovered practices that posed “an immediate serious danger to the public health, safety and welfare” of others who share the road. Specifically, the state found the firm was not properly training its workers, left out key portions of a multi-part skills test and altered testing data to make it seem as if its students scored higher than they actually did. truck accident attorney

The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles has canceled its contract with the driving school, which up until then was the No. 3 biggest commercial driver license testing firm in the state, which locations from Miami to Labelle. Taking it even a step farther, the state agency ordered some 1,500 commercial truck drivers whose licenses were issued by the company to rush for a retake of their CDL tests, or else they would lose their right to legally operate a commercial vehicle (and thus likely their jobs).

According to TheDrive.com, when state investigators started examining claims that the books were cooked at the school, they sat in on the training and testing for existing students. With those investigators overseeing the process, the pass rate for CDL applicants plummeted from 60 percent to just 11 percent. That’s a solid indicator that the school had been passing students who weren’t properly trained and lacked the necessary skills to operate a mammoth commercial truck. Continue reading →

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Florida truck accident lawsuits are among the most complex in motor vehicle litigation for numerous reasons. Successful truck accident attorneys know this is in large part because the sheer size and weight of these vehicles and the fact that collisions often occur at high-speeds on highways inevitably means a greater severity of injuries. Another reason is there are often numerous defendants. It’s not just the driver, but the driver’s employer and the carrier and the owner of the cargo and possibly others. Employers or companies acting as employers may be held vicariously liable for the negligent acts of a driver who was acting in the course and scope of employment at the time of the accident.truck accident attorney

Although occupants of passenger vehicles most often suffer the worst outcomes in truck accidents, truck drivers aren’t immune from injuries, especially if the collision involved another large vehicle. That typically opens another avenue of recovery in workers’ compensation, though this doesn’t necessarily foreclose on other legal remedies.

In a recent case weighed by the Wyoming Supreme Court, justices reversed in part a summary judgment in claim filed by a truck driver who was struck by another large truck while he worked to free his truck from its stationary position on a snow-covered highway. The court ruled that while claims against plaintiff’s co-driver and the owner of the cargo they were hauling for direct negligence were correctly decided in defendants’ favor, plaintiff’s claim for damages on the issue of vicarious liability should have survived summary judgment. That means he may continue with his claim, though justices noted in their ruling, “(plaintiff) will undoubtedly have a difficult case to try,” namely because he bear the burden of proof on issues of negligence, causation and damages, as well as probable assertions of comparative fault.  Continue reading →

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It was a simple denial of a defense motion for continuance that resulted in overturning a $2.5 million verdict in favor of a plaintiff whose wife had died in a truck accident. That doesn’t mean plaintiff has lost, but it will start the lengthy process of trial preparation all over again. It’s possible when faced with this prospect (and already knowing how a jury might weigh the facts of the case), that a settlement will be worked out before it comes to that. truck accident

Still, it’s disappointing news for the plaintiff, whose truck crash case was recently weighed by the Alabama Supreme Court.

On the day of the accident, pursuant to a contract with the owner of a local paper mill, defendant instructed his employees to drive two company dump trucks to gather debris and take it to a nearby dump site. After loading the trucks, the drivers traveled to the dump site, which required them to travel down a narrow, two-lane road for part of the way. Continue reading →

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Now, The New York Times reports that self-driving trucks may be closer on the horizon than expected, a development that would not only revolutionize the trucking industry, it could make for fewer trucking accidents. truck accident lawyer

According to the report, the venture capital industry has been investing heavily in self-driving technology. Just this year, investors and firms have placed over $1 billion into development of self-driving technologies for large trucks – and that is 10 times what was being invested three years ago. The potential for growth opportunity is exponential, though our Orlando truck accident lawyers know it may raise some interesting legal questions.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has noted an uptick in trucking accidents in recent years, rising 8 percent between 2014 and 2015. This upward trend poses a safety threat on Florida roads, particularly as the trucking industry has continued to grow with the rise of online shopping. Trucks – and their drivers – are increasingly called on to deliver goods and services, with a heavy demand placed on expedience.  Continue reading →

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Professional drivers – and truckers especially – have a responsibility to use great care because it’s well-known that larger vehicles have the potential for greater harm when they are involved in a collision. When they fail to use reasonable care, they may be held accountable. truck accident lawyer

Jurors in Palm Beach County awarded $45 million to the parents of a medical student who was killed in a May 2015 crash involving a tractor-trailer in a construction zone. The construction company was ordered to pay $35 million in damages while the driver of the truck crash was ordered to pay an additional $10 million.

Another wrongful death lawsuit for the loss of a 17-year-old girl in that same crash is still pending. She had just graduated high school and was looking forward to attending the University of Miami on a full scholarship.

The truck driver who was operating the flatbed truck with an unsecured load of concrete barriers was charged earlier this year with one count of reckless driving causing serious bodily injury (the medical student’s 25-year-old passenger was badly hurt in the crash) and two counts of vehicular homicide. His criminal defense attorney called the incident a “tragic accident.” However, as injury attorneys in Fort Pierce, we find the term “accident” lacking – not because the driver intended harm, but because these are avoidable scenarios when drivers use reasonable care to prevent foreseeable harm.
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There simply aren’t enough truck drivers in the U.S. to meet the increasing demands of the transportation and shipping industry. By some accounts, there is a shortage of nearly 50,000 drivers. In an attempt to fill the void, many trucking companies are actively recruiting retirees. trucking

At first glance, this seems like a great solution, particularly as Baby Boomers are living longer than in generations’ past and have ample knowledge and experience in a wide range of fields. The problem is that driving – particularly operation of a big rig – requires a certain degree of physical and mental stamina that may be challenging to those over a certain age. Older drivers may struggle with worsening vision (particularly at night), reduced reflexes, waning hearing and in some cases cognitive decline. All of these could prove disastrous for a trucker.

CBS News launched a study that looked at truck accidents involving drivers over the age of 65. What they found was that between 2013 and 2015, more than 6,630 trucking accidents were caused by truck drivers who were at or past the retirement age. It should be noted that this figure only tallied crash reports from 12 states, so the actual number is much, much higher. The study also showed that in the last couple years, the percentage of crashes involving drivers in their 70s and older spiked by nearly 20 percent. That includes both commercial truck and bus drivers, and should be cause for concern and further analysis.  Continue reading →

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A federal appeals court sided with a plaintiff in a trucking accident lawsuit, after defendants appealed trial court’s denial of motion for a new trial. Defendants alleged trial court erred in admitting evidence of medical bills, as well as refusal of sanctions for spoliation of evidence after the victim underwent back surgery before undergoing an independent medical exam. truck2

However, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed trial court’s denial of a new trial in Guzman v. Jones, finding the court did not abuse its discretion.

According to court records, the case arose from a motor vehicle accident involving a truck that was driven by one defendant (trucker) and owned by another (trucking company). Plaintiff sustained personal injuries as a result. Continue reading →

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A truck driver who logged 50 straight hours driving from Kentucky to Florida has been charged for a crash that occurred on the return trip, in which six people were killed and several others injured. It was also after the truck itself had two mechanical failures early on in the trip – one with the brakes, and another with the fuel delivery system.trucksontheroad

The fatal crash occurred on I-75 in Tennessee – and this was after the trucker allegedly sideswiped another commercial truck while on that illegally long haul in Florida. He was purportedly high on crystal meth at the time of the second crash, authorities say.

Investigators say on the day of the fatal crash, the driver had only logged off work for 12 hours after his 50-hour shift and returned to the road. At that point, he’d been driving for 15 hours when, at 77-miles-per-hour in a 55-mile-per-hour zone, he slammed into traffic that had slowed ahead of a heavy construction zone. The truck driver struck numerous vehicles with his tractor-trailer. Ultimately, six people lost their lives and four others were seriously injured. Continue reading →

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In any car accident lawsuit, there are a number of elements that must be proven in order for the case to be successful. Those elements include:

  • Defendant owed plaintiff duty of care;
  • That duty of care was breached;
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One was a 17-year-old, just graduated from high school, on her way to the University of Miami in the fall. The other was a 29-year-old medical student, preparing to begin his clinical rotation this summer. Now, both are gone.semitruck1

It happened on I-75 through Pembroke Pines, when a construction truck hauling concrete barriers pulled out into traffic on the fast-paced highway and into the path of the medical student. The truck was then struck by the vehicle driven by the 17-year-old, as concrete barriers flew out of the bed of the truck and onto her vehicle. Another large truck then barreled into the wreckage as well.

Authorities are investigating whether the concrete barrier truck, driven by a man whose commercial license had just been suspended and then reinstated days before the crash, was properly loaded and whether the driver followed proper procedure in exiting the construction site, located in the highway median.

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