The dangers of texting while driving are well known, in fact, around 26% of all car accidents are caused by cell phone use. Despite this, drivers continue to read and write messages while behind the wheel, taking their eyes off the road and putting others in danger.
In 2015, a semi-truck driver forever changed the life of a member of the Army National Guard, all because he made the choice to text and drive.
22-Year-Old Awarded $16.5 Million After Crash
On the day of the accident, the then 22-year-old plaintiff was running errands. While on a major roadway, he obeyed traffic laws and came to a stop at a road light.
The driver of a semi truck behind him did not.
The semi, which was going 65 mph, slammed into the back of the plaintiff’s car, sending him into the intersection and completely demolished the car the plaintiff was riding in. Firefighters and police officers who responded to the scene had to cut the car apart in order to remove the plaintiff. He was then flown by helicopter to the hospital because of the seriousness of his injuries.
Since the accident, the plaintiff has had to undergo 15 surgeries and continues to require cognitive and physical therapy for neck pain and double vision. His planned career in the military is no longer an option and he has also been prevented from seeking a career in police work or as a railroad conductor.
He decided to pursue legal action against the driver of the semi and the company the driver was working for at the time of the crash.
The case went to trial and after deliberating for only two hours, the jury determined that the driver was 100% at fault and that the plaintiff should be awarded $16.5 for their past medical expenses, lost wages, and physical suffering.
Trucking Companies Can Be Held Liable For Their Driver’s Accidents
After being involved in an accident with a semi, victims often wonder who a lawsuit can be filed against. While the at-fault truck driver is usually named in the complaint, it may also be possible to file against several other parties, including:
- The owner of the truck.
- The company that employs the driver.
- The company that hired the trucking company.
- A company or individual who was responsible for the maintenance of the truck.
- The manufacturer of a defective part on the truck.
In order to determine how many parties are actually at fault, it’s important to consult an attorney as soon as possible after an accident.
What Evidence Will I Need For My Auto Accident Lawsuit?
When you work with Banville Law, we will help you collect the evidence that you need, however, there are steps you can take prior to contacting us. This may include:
- Obtaining a copy of the police report.
- Keeping all copies of insurance paperwork.
- Requesting copies of your medical records.
- Collecting witness contact information.
- Taking photographs of the accident scene if possible.
It might feel like you can collect the everything that you will need on your own, however, there are certain types of evidence which may be vital to the claim which will be difficult to obtain without legal assistance, like the electronic data recorder.
What Is A Truck’s Electronic Data Recorder?
An Electronic Data Recorder (EDR) is like the “black box” that is found on airplanes. This data recorder will keep information on the truck from the moments leading up to the accident, such as the speed that the truck was traveling at the time of the crash, if the driver applied the brakes, and if the airbags deployed.
While not all trucks have this recorder, many do and the owners of the truck may “lose” the evidence is a lawyer doesn’t get involved immediately after an accident.
To learn more about how we can help you preserve evidence that may be crucial to your case, all our law offices now.