A recent tragic truck accident illustrates the importance of Maryland truck drivers being aware of their surroundings along with the height and size of their vehicle. Not being so can lead to horrible and even fatal truck accidents. Trucks are, to state the obvious, larger than cars, and their size can make them very dangerous. For example, a truck driver not realizing their truck’s size may cause an accident when they merge onto the highway or when they pass under roadway signs or overpasses. This is exactly what happened last month in a truck accident that claimed one man’s life.
According to a local news report covering the incident, the driver of a dump truck was traveling west on an interstate with its bed raised when it struck an overhead sign at an exit. The impact caused the sign to fall, and it landed on a 2019 Ford F-150, driven by a 62-year-old man. Tragically, the 62-year-old man died as a result of the accident.
While it is unlikely that the dump truck driver intentionally hit the overhead sign trying to kill the driver in the Ford behind him, that does not mean the truck driver can’t be held responsible. While criminal charges have not been filed against the driver, this case may still lead to civil charges. Specifically, the deceased victim’s family may decide to bring a wrongful death suit against the dump truck driver, an avenue available to many Maryland residents who lost a loved one in a truck accident.
In order to be successful in a wrongful death suit against a negligent truck driver, plaintiffs generally must prove four things. First, that the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care. Generally, truck drivers owe all other passengers on the road a duty of care to drive reasonably carefully and not harm others, so this is generally easy to prove.
Second, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant breached this duty of care. In this case, the plaintiff would want to offer evidence that the defendant should have known his truck’s height could cause an accident, or that he knew and still acted carelessly. If incidents had occurred before, for example, or if the truck driver had gone through a safety course that mentioned dangers of driving under overhead signs with large vehicles, then the plaintiff would definitely want to introduce that evidence.
Third, the plaintiff has to prove that the defendant’s breach actually caused the incident in question, and, fourth, that the plaintiff suffered real harm as a result. In this case, both of these elements would likely be met, as it appears clear that the truck driver hitting the sign caused it to fall and hit the pickup truck car, causing the fatal crash.
Have You Lost a Loved One to a Maryland Truck Accident?
If you’ve recently lost a loved one in a Maryland truck accident, you may be wondering how to hold the negligent party responsible. Contact the personal injury attorneys at Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, for immediate assistance. We fight for families like yours who have tragically lost loved ones in preventable accidents. To learn more about how we can help you financially recover, call us today at 800-654-1949.