Many times, fatal accidents that involve commercial trucks are of the tractor-trailer-versus-passenger-vehicle variety, but not always. Accidents that occur as a result of negligence committed by trucking companies and truck drivers can sometimes place other truckers in great, and even fatal, peril. Whether you are a commercial trucker or just a passenger in a car, you may suffer extensive or catastrophic damages as a result of a trucker’s negligence, so you need to have a skilled New Orleans injury attorney on your side to make sure you get all the compensation that the facts say you truly deserve.
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C.M.’s fatal accident was an example of just how severe the harm can be. A.H. and C.M. were both truckers who were traveling eastbound on Interstate 10 near Lafayette when the trouble began. A.H. suspected he might have a blowout. Instead of pulling to the shoulder, he engaged in a move in which he “wiggled,” or swayed his trailer from side to side to get a better look at all his tires. He did have a blowout in one rear trailer tire, and the wiggle move allegedly caused the tire to disintegrate even more quickly.
The tire pieces began flying into the air in the vicinity of C.M.’s truck, which was behind A.H.’s. C.M. apparently lost control of his rig and his truck crossed through a guardrail, flipped over, hit a tree and came to rest in a drainage ditch. The accident was fatal to C.M.
C.M.’s wife and his son sued for wrongful death and survival. Louisiana law recognizes that the loss of a close loved one inflicts significant damage on those whom the deceased leaves behind. That’s why the law provides two separate civil causes of action – wrongful death and survival – to provide more fully for the totality of the loss suffered. Following the jury trial and post-trial motions in C.M.’s family’s case, the total amount of damages awarded to the wife and the son exceeded $730,000. The trial judge later increased the amount of general damages by an additional $150,000.
A.H. and his employer both appealed the ruling. One thing they challenged was the jury’s finding regarding fault. (The jury found A.H. 10% to blame based upon his driving and A.H.’s employer 90% at fault for putting a defective tire on the trailer A.H. was hauling. The jury found C.M. to have been 0% to blame for the fatal accident.
In an accident like this, it is very important to make sure you have investigated, researched and obtained all of the evidence that can potentially provide substantial strengthening to your case. In this case, there was another driver who was behind both big rigs, and he saw the accident take place. He was brought in to testify in the trial and he testified that C.M. was maintaining a safe following distance behind A.H. before the accident happened. That witness, plus two additional witnesses who saw the accident and its immediate aftermath, all testified that they saw nothing out of the ordinary in the way in which C.M. was driving. That evidence was enough for the jury to find C.M. 0% at fault and for the appeals court to uphold that outcome.
Truck accidents frequently come with major damages and serious, sometimes fatal, injuries. These fatal accidents require legal counsel who is sensitive to the loss your family has incurred and who is also skilled at pursuing your legal action diligently. The knowledgeable Louisiana truck injury lawyers at the Cardone Law Firm have many years’ experience representing the interests of injured people and we know how to get results for you.
For your confidential consultation contact us online or phone Cardone at 1-888-89-CARDONE (1-888-892-2736).
More Blog Posts:
How to React if You’ve Be Injured in a Collision with a Commercial Truck in Louisiana, Louisiana Injury Lawyers Blog, July 24, 2018
Fiery Truck Crash Along Interstate 12 Kills Four Near Covington, Louisiana, Louisiana Injury Lawyers Blog, June 18, 2018