In June of last year, a Wal-Mart truck allegedly failed to slow down for an approaching construction project, rear-ending the limousine that Tracy Morgan and his entourage were occupying. A fellow comedian, and one of Mr. Morgan’s good friends, James McNair, was killed in the accident. Tracy Morgan was seriously injured, suffering a broken leg, broken ribs, and a broken nose.
According to one news source, Wal-Mart and Mr. Morgan reached an agreed-upon settlement for the case earlier this month. The details of the settlement agreement have not been made public, likely as a condition of the agreement. However, Mr. Morgan told reporters that “Wal-Mart did right by me and my family, and for my associates and their families. I am grateful that the case was resolved amicably.”
The allegations in the case were serious. There was evidence that the truck was traveling at around 20 miles per hour over the speed limit at the time of the accident. Additionally, the driver of the truck was allegedly near his drive-time limit and had not slept for the past 24 hours.
Rest Requirements for Semi-Truck Drivers
One of the many responsibilities of a trucking company is to make certain that it does everything possible to ensure that all of the company’s drivers follow the legal requirements of operating a large truck. One such requirement is that which requires truck drivers to get a certain amount of rest between trips and to only be on the road for a set number of hours per day.
To help make sure that truck drivers follow this requirement, the state and federal governments require truck drivers to maintain rest logs that keep track of rest time and driving time. These rest logs will often be critical in cases alleging that the driver of the truck was negligent, distracted, or not well-rested at the time of the accident.
Settlement Agreements in Truck Accident Cases
As indicated above, Tracy Morgan entered into a settlement agreement with Wal-Mart, the terms of which have not been disclosed. This means that Mr. Morgan (as well as Wal-Mart) is able to avoid the expense and uncertainty of trial. While settlement agreements may not make sense in every case, they do allow plaintiffs who value certainty a way to ensure they do not end up with nothing after a judge or jury finds the defendant was not negligent. On the other hand, settlement agreements are generally for less than jury verdicts. The decision to accept a settlement offer rests solely with the plaintiff.
Have You Been injured in a Maryland Truck Accident?
While this accident occurred in New Jersey, serious and fatal truck accidents are common on Maryland highways as well, and similar laws apply across the country. If you have been involved in a Maryland truck accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation for your injuries. To learn more about truck accidents, and what must be proven in order to be successful, call one of the dedicated attorneys at Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC. The skilled attorneys at Lebowitz & Mzhen have the experience you need to feel comfortable putting your case in their hands. Call 410-654-3600 today to set up a free consultation.
More Blog Posts:
Maryland’s Winter Weather Partially Responsible for Cattle Truck Accident, Maryland Trucking Accident Lawyer Blog, published March 27, 2015.
Queen Anne Semi-Truck Accident Claims Three Lives, Maryland Trucking Accident Lawyer Blog, published May 8, 2015.