Articles Posted in Dump Truck Accidents

People who operate large trucks for a living have an obligation to make sure that they do so with the utmost care. While all large vehicles have the potential to cause serious injuries in a Maryland truck accident, construction vehicles are some of the most dangerous, due to their moving parts and proximity to pedestrians and construction workers.

Construction VehicleConstruction sites pose a number of hazards both to pedestrians as well as to the workers on-site. While the operator of a construction vehicle always is responsible for its safety, the foreman of the job site also has a duty to ensure that the vehicles are placed in a safe spot in relation to the job site, as well as making sure that the vehicles are properly secured at the end of the day. A failure by either the operator or the foreman to follow the necessary safety protocols may result in a fatal Maryland truck accident.

In such situations, the family members of the accident victim may be able to pursue compensation for their loss through a Maryland wrongful death lawsuit. These claims must usually be brought by a surviving spouse, child, or parent, but they can be brought by other family members in some circumstances. In order to succeed in a Maryland wrongful death action, the plaintiff must be able to establish that the defendant’s negligent act was the cause of their loved one’s death. This can be done through eyewitness testimony, expert witness testimony, and the admission of other evidence suggesting the truck’s operator was somehow negligent.

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Most motorists who have spent any amount of time on Maryland highways have probably noticed the frequency of construction vehicles working on or near the highway. These vehicles are necessary to help build and maintain Maryland’s infrastructure; however, when not properly operated or secured, these vehicles can pose a serious risk to motorists and cause Maryland truck accidents.

Construction VehiclesThese large construction vehicles have the potential to cause serious injuries or death when they are not used properly. Indeed, large construction machines are designed to tear down houses, break apart pavement, and move large amounts of earth. Those who use construction vehicles are responsible to operate the vehicle safely, but their duty does not end there. Operators must also ensure that the vehicles are properly secured when they are not being used.

Runaway Dump Truck Kills Two

Earlier this month, a tragic construction vehicle accident claimed two lives, including the vehicle’s operator and another nearby motorist. According to a recent news report covering the accident, the dump truck was parked at a work site that was located atop a hill near a busy roadway. At some point while the dump truck was unoccupied, it began to travel down the hill toward the road below.

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Earlier this month in North Carolina, a five-year-old boy was killed when he was struck by an unattended dump truck. According to one local news report covering the tragedy, police investigating the accident believe that the truck was not properly secured when it was left unattended by the construction crew.

Construction EquipmentEvidently, the truck was parked on the side of a road in a residential neighborhood, near the top of a hill. A witness to the accident told reporters that a construction worker exited the truck, and then shortly afterward, the truck started rolling down the hill. The truck rolled for approximately 100 yards, taking down overhead power lines along the way, until it entered a resident’s driveway. The resident’s five-year-old boy was playing in the driveway and was struck by the unmanned dump truck. The young boy was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Police arrested one man, whom they claim was responsible for the dump truck before it began to roll away. While the police have not disclosed the evidence they are using to make their assessment, they believe that the dump truck was not properly restrained when the construction worker exited the truck. Police are also looking into the safety record of the construction company to determine if similar violations have occurred in the past.

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All truck accidents are different. Some are straightforward accidents in which a driver’s fault is apparent. However, other accidents present a more difficult task when it comes to determining who was at fault, or what happened in the moments leading up to the collision. This is especially the case when all of the parties involved are seriously injured or killed as a result of the accident.

Truck TiresHowever, the fact that the police cannot piece together what caused an accident will not prevent any of the accident victims from filing a personal injury lawsuit seeking compensation for their injuries. In fact, it is quite common for a personal injury case to rely solely on circumstantial evidence. Of course, physical evidence, eyewitness testimony, or a police officer’s account of the accident is preferred, but this is not always available.

Police Unsure of Cause in Truck Accident that Killed Two, Injured Two Others

Earlier this month, two men were killed and another two injured in an accident between a dump truck and a pick-up truck. According to one local news source reporting on the collision, the accident occurred at around 7:15 in the morning when the occupants of the pick-up truck were on their way to work. The accident was so chaotic that it was unclear who was driving the pick-up truck.

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A destructive accident late last month involving a farm tractor and a dump truck can be analyzed to demonstrate how accident plaintiffs may be able to make a case for damages after an accident that cannot be fully explained. According to a local news report, the semi truck accident occurred on July 27 on an Indiana highway, when a dump truck inexplicably rear-ended a farm tractor that was towing a piece of agricultural equipment on the road. Both the driver of the tractor and the driver of the truck were injured in the crash, and each remained in critical condition at the time of the article’s publication.

Dump TruckThe Loaded Dump Truck Crashes into the Tractor on a Straight Stretch of Road

According to the news report, the county sheriff gave a statement that the truck driver should have had a clear view ahead of him to see the slower-moving tractor, and it is unknown why he was unable to avoid the collision. After the impact, the driver of the tractor was ejected from his vehicle and sustained serious injuries. The driver of the dump truck, which tipped over and dumped its load against a guard rail, was trapped inside his vehicle with serious injuries for over two hours before authorities were able to access the passenger compartment and have the driver airlifted to a local hospital for medical treatment.

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It is a commonly known fact that truck drivers are at a greater risk of causing an accident than the drivers of other vehicles. This is due in part to the knowledge and experience that is necessary to operate these heavy, unwieldy vehicles. As is the case with all accidents, there will be times when the parties involved know each other. While this may make what was already a tragic event even worse, it should not stand in the way of the injured party pursuing the compensation they deserve.

Dump TruckIn Maryland and across the country, insurance coverage is mandatory for all drivers. This is of course true for truck drivers as well. In fact, depending on the type of cargo and truck involved, there may be specific insurance requirements that must be met by the trucking company. Insurance is required because in many cases the person responsible for the accident is not likely able to cover the extensive costs that may be involved. These include the medical bills for the victims, the lost wages they sustain while away from work and in recovery, and any decrease in future earning potential due to their new limitations. It may also include amounts for the emotional pain and suffering that the accident victim is forced to endure.

Thankfully, insurance companies are there to make injured parties whole again. However, insurance companies are also operated on a for-profit model and generally try to settle or deny claims to ensure they keep their coffers full for the stockholders. It is therefore very important that anyone injured in a Maryland truck accident seek the counsel of an experienced attorney to help them with the preparation of their case.

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Earlier this month, the Maryland Court of Appeals issued a written opinion in a truck accident case, holding that evidence of a defendant’s lack of insurance is not relevant and should be excluded from the jury’s consideration. In the case, Perry v. Asphalt & Concrete Services, Inc., the appellate court reversed the nearly $530,000 jury verdict and ordered a new trial.

volvo-1201106_960_720The Facts of the Case

The plaintiff was crossing the street in Frederick, Maryland, when he was struck by a dump truck that was working on a paving job at a nearby church. As a result of being struck by the dump truck, the plaintiff sustained head trauma and fractured several ribs. He then filed a lawsuit against the truck driver, the truck’s owner, and the defendant in this case, ACS, which was the company that hired the truck to complete the paving job.

The plaintiff’s theory against ACS was that the company negligently hired the truck driver. The plaintiff claimed that ACS was negligent because it failed to look into the truck driver’s licensing. In fact, the truck driver was not a licensed driver at the time of the accident. He also did not have liability insurance at the time of the accident.

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Like other large trucks, dump trucks are heavy and difficult to steer, and they take a long time to come to a complete stop once a driver begins to apply the brake. On top of that, the cargo in a dump truck is often loose stone or other debris that is covered only by a tarp, if it is covered by anything at all. The combination of these factors results in dump trucks being some of the most dangerous vehicles on the road.

dump-truck-3-1416869In fact, dump trucks have the highest number of fatalities among all kinds of commercial trucks, with about six fatalities per million miles traveled. Garbage trucks are not far behind, with about five fatalities per million miles traveled. Semi-trucks are a bit further down the list with about 3.63 fatalities per million miles traveled.

Another reason why dump trucks are so dangerous is because they have the capability to cause mass destruction when they are involved in an accident. Most dump trucks are extremely heavy and have a great mass, giving them the power to plow through several vehicles before coming to a complete stop. Dump trucks are often prone to tipping, due to their high center of gravity. This can result in additional accident victims because people driving behind the truck are forced to deal with the debris that spills onto the roadway.

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Earlier this week near Dover, Delaware, a dump truck driver crashed his truck into the rear of a semi-truck that was parked on the side of the highway. Thankfully, no one was injured as a result. According to one local Delaware news report, the accident took place in the southbound lanes of Delaware Route 1 at around five in the morning.

unusual-dumper-1514977Evidently, the operator of the dump truck was heading south on Delaware 1 when he became momentarily distracted and drifted off the road and into the right median. As the truck made its way off the road, it collided with a semi-truck that had parked under an overpass on the highway. The force from the collision pushed the semi-truck some 300 feet down the highway and up onto a grassy embankment. The dump truck ended up toppling over on its side a few hundred feet from the point of collision.

The operator of the semi-truck was in the sleeper area of the truck at the time of the collision and was surprisingly not injured at all in the accident. The driver of the dump truck was taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries, and he was released after just a few hours. Both drivers were ticketed by police after the accident, the dump truck driver for inattentive driving and the semi-truck operator for parking in a no-stopping zone.

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In what is certainly one of the most catastrophic truck accidents to date, 28 people have been pronounced dead and over 140 hospitalized after a dump truck lost control in Mazapil, Mexico, when its brakes failed. According to a Yahoo! News report, the accident occurred as hundreds of worshippers were on their way to Saint Gregorio Magno Church.

dumper-2-1239143Evidently, the large group of people were on a pilgrimage to the church when the fatal accident occurred. As the dump truck driver approached the crowd, the truck’s brakes failed, sending it into another vehicle. The dump truck, which was full of tons of sand, then continued on into the crowd of 300 people.

After the carnage, over 140 were taken to the hospital. As of the time of this article’s publication, there were still 31 hospitalized, 10 of whom were still in critical condition. Fourteen people died on the scene, and another 14 have died since, either on the way to the hospital or while at the hospital.

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