Low visibility and big trucks don’t mix. With their heavy weight, increased stopping distance, and unwieldy controls, drivers need to be exceptionally attentive when driving in wintry conditions. This is especially the case for snow plow drivers, who, more than other truck drivers, travel on smaller roads through neighborhoods and near schools. In fact, most of us have seen the damage that a snow plow can do, often to a parked car or an unlucky resident’s mailbox.
However, not all snow plow accidents involve stationary objects. Sometimes snow plow drivers don’t see occupied vehicles or even pedestrians while on their route. In these cases, the victims of a snow plow driver’s negligence may suffer a serious injury or worse.
Of course, pedestrians and other motorists should also be safe by keeping an eye out for snow plows and maintaining a safe distance. However, there is only so much that a motorist on their way to work or a child on their way to school can do. In cases in which a snow plow driver fails to take reasonable precautions and causes a serious or fatal accident, that driver as well as the company or municipality that employs them may be held liable for any injuries suffered as a result.
New York Man Killed After Massive Snow Storm
Earlier last month, a New York man was killed when he was struck by a snow plow that was clearing snow from in front of the man’s home. According to one local news source, the accident took place in the mid-afternoon in the wake of a storm that dropped over two feet of snow in the area.
After he was struck by the plow, the man was taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead a short time after his arrival. Police began an investigation into the accident and quickly determined that there was no criminal conduct involved.
Civil Versus Criminal Liability
In the tragic accident discussed above, the police noted that there was no criminal conduct on the part of the snow plow driver. That means that the driver was not in violation of any law at the time of the accident. However, that does not necessarily mean that the driver was not negligent in failing to see the pedestrian. Criminal liability requires a higher level of “guilty knowledge” than does civil liability, which can proceed on negligence alone. Typically, criminal liability only is found when there is reckless or intentional conduct.
Have You Been Injured by a Negligent Truck Driver?
If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Maryland truck accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation for all that you have been put through. Maryland law allows for those injured by negligent drivers to file civil lawsuits based on negligence against the driver responsible for their injuries. If they are successful, a plaintiff may recover compensation for medical expenses, time away from work, and any pain and suffering endured as a result of the accident. Call 410-654-3600 to set up a free consultation with a dedicated attorney today.
More Blog Posts:
Tracy Morgan’s Tragic Accident Brings Truck Driver Fatigue to Center Stage, Maryland Trucking Accident Lawyer Blog, published January 20, 2016.
Court Upholds Verdict Against Trucking Company in Fatal Amtrak Accident, Maryland Trucking Accident Lawyer Blog, published February 3, 2016.