Articles Posted in Truck Accidents

The estate of a 21 year Michigan man killed in a alcohol-related, double-fatal pickup-truck crash has sued the driver, two bars, and the victim’s father who owned the vehicle.

Such a sad story here. The deceased’s mother, as representative of her son’s estate, is suing the driver and her deceased son’s father (who owned the subject vehicle), as well as the two establishments that the deceased and the driver had been drinking at that evening.

After leaving the establishments, the deceased gave his father’s keys to the driver, who eventually lost control and crashed into an oil-change shop killing the 21 year old man as well as 26 year passenger that had been out with them that night. The driver was drunk and it has been estimated that he was driving between 78 and 86 mph in a 45 mph zone when he lost control.

CNN reports that at least 50 hurt and two people were killed in truck accident involving two school buses and a truck on I-44 outside of St. Louis, Missouri.

Tragic bus accidents like this often obscure the fact that school buses are statistically an extremely safe way for children to travel to school, safer than being driven by their parents. This fact does nothing, of course, if your children were involved in this awful crash. But parents also do not want to overreact to high profile stories like this and take their kids off school buses out of safety concerns.

The family of man killed in an Idaho trucking accident while making a delivery to a dairy has sued 4-Bros Dairy, alleging negligence. The man was delivering apples to the dairy last year when a 40 foot pile of decomposing livestock feed fell on his truck as he was parking it next to the pile. . 4-Bros Dairy has already paid a $1,700 Occupational Safety and Health Administration fine over the incident.

Some of worst truck accident cases our lawyer have handled involve accidents to truck drivers who are injured not in a moving vehicle but tangentially to their operation of a truck.

A Broward County, Florida jury on Tuesday awarded $14.6 million to a truck driver paralyzed in a 2007 accident that occurred in Palm Beach County. According to a truck accident lawyer for the plaintiff, the lawsuit was an uninsured motorist claim to National Casualty. The truck accident occurred when the driver swerved to avoid another driver who ran a stop sign. The injuries are extremely serious: the Plaintiff lost use of his arms and legs as a result of the accident and requires ongoing rehabilitation.

A federal jury in Kansas jury awarded $23.5 million to a man who was severely injured in a truck accident in New Mexico on Route 54 near Tucumcari with a truck driver who tested positive for methamphetamine. Jurors found that the driver for Swift Transportation was 65% responsible for the accident that left Plaintiff with major spinal cord injuries. U.S. District Judge Monti Belot subsequently reduced the actual award consistent with New Mexico comparative negligence law to nearly $15.3 million.

This was a very serious injury case – the defendant has $5 million in past and future medical bills. A big as this case was, it is not the biggest verdict the defendant Swift Transportation has taken in the even the last year. Last December, an Arizona jury awarded $36.5 million to the family of a man killed in a collision with another one of its trucks.

There is a story on the verdict in the Wichita Eagle.

When a lawyer gets a verdict or settlement in a 7 figure case, the lawyer can join the Million Dollar Advocates (of which I am a member). Last week, after a Texas jury awarded $1.5 million in a truck accident involving two men seriously injured after a semi crashed into their car, an Indiana based trucking company entered a more ignominious group of trucking companies that have had million dollar truck accident verdicts entered against them based on truck accidents that occurred within a year, both Texas truck accidents. In 2005, Celadon took a $17.5 million jury hit in a truck accident case involving the death of a U.S. Army lieutenant, who was killed after getting rear-ended by a Celadon truck. The venue? Texas.

In this most recent case, two men were driving in their car on a highway in Waxahachie, Texas (near Dallas) when a Celadon Trucking Services tractor-trailer struck their car. The Plaintiffs’ Texas truck accident lawyer alleged in Plaintiffs’ lawsuit that Celadon negligently hired the truck driver and that its driver caused the truck accident. The jury agreed.

One of the men suffered a fractured vertebra; the other sustained a serious injury to his right knee, which required several reconstructive surgeries. The latter man also suffered a mild traumatic brain injury and damage to his collarbone.

On Friday, a Dallas County jury awarded $87 million to a man who was partially paralyzed in a moving-truck accident with $87 million in his lawsuit against U-Haul.

Plaintiff’s lawyer Ted Lyon told reporters after the verdict that U-Haul had faulty emergency break and worn down gears. The Plaintiff rented a U-Haul to help his daughter move. When he got out of the truck, it started rolling backwards and knocked him down. Now the formerly active retiree cannot walk and requires around-the-clock care.

A truck driver whose wife was tragically killed at a crossing at a Mississippi truck stop failed to allege facts sufficent to defeat a motion for directed verdict, Mississippi Supreme Court ruled in a 5-4 decision. Plaintiff’s lawyers had alleged that the truck stop operators negligently failed to provide adequate lighting and had placed a propane tank and advertising in its parking lot, obstructing the view of pedestrians and drivers of oncoming traffic. But the Mississippi Supreme Court found that the danger of crossing the public roadway should have been obvious to the truck driver’s wife. Four of the judges disagreed, finding that even though the truck stop did not own the area in question, there was testimony at trial that it was generally known that truckers parked in the area, even those that were not customers at the truck stop. Unfortunately for the Plaintiff, he was one judge short.

The TortsProf Blog reports that state legislatures in Colorado and Oregon are considering increases to their caps on noneconomic damages. Colorado is currently debating a bill that would raise the cap on noneconomic damages in medical malpractice cases from a measly $300,000 to a less measly, but still ridiculously low, $450,000. The bill was voted out of committee on Monday and will now be sent to the Senate floor for debate. The details are here.
Oregon is wrestling with a last year’s Oregon Supreme Court ruling that caps on damages payable by the state was unconstitutional as applied. The task force has been set up in Oregon to study the issue of raising the cap on noneconomic damages.

In the history of caps on noneconomic damages, the door has swung only one way – toward adding caps or decreasing the amount of the cap. Hopefully, this news for the clients of personal injury lawyers, that the door will begin to swing in the other direction.