Georgia personal injury: fatal Barrow County tractor-trailer accident

In an instant the lives of a young wife and her baby daughter were changed forever when the woman’s 29-year-old husband’s pickup truck was rear ended by a tractor-trailer, which flattened the pickup and killed him.

The truck accident occurred in a summer 2014 Wednesday afternoon on Georgia Highway 316 in the vicinity of Patrick Mill Road when traffic slowed to accommodate a large mower in the road. A Dodge 3500 with a trailer had to stop, so the decedent’s pickup next in line slowed down, but the semi truck behind him instead hit the pickup, pushing it into the first vehicle.

The tractor-trailer flipped, stopping traffic for almost 10 hours.

Semi-truck driver behavior

Significantly, the 40-year-old, out-of-state semi-truck driver was charged with following too closely and 2nd degree homicide by vehicle. If the deceased driver’s surviving family decides to sue the driver in a wrongful death lawsuit, evidence of a violation of Georgia traffic laws would be important evidence in the civil trial.

Under Georgia law, a traffic law violation would likely support a judicial finding that the semi-truck driver was negligent as a matter of law, also called negligence per se, meaning that the traffic-law violation supports an automatic legal finding of negligence. No additional evidence of negligence would be necessary.

Legal counsel with commercial truck accident experience important

It is vital for any Georgian injured or whose loved one was killed in a crash with a large commercial truck to seek the advice and representation of a personal injury attorney with specific experience handling large truck accident cases. There are several reasons for this related to the complexity of such incidents and the many potentially responsible parties involved.

First, getting a truck accident lawyer on board early on allows him or her to communicate and negotiate with the insurance companies of all the parties. It can be intimidating for an individual to do so alone especially when already stressed by dealing with the ramifications of the accident like injury, rehabilitation, pain and suffering, financial strain, grief, property loss and more. In addition, the victim or his or her family should receive sound legal advice up front before communicating directly with insurers about the matter.

Second, the attorney will launch an investigation on behalf of the victim and family of the collision. The logistics and forensics of such an event can be complex and technical; a skilled lawyer will have access to necessary experts to review the evidence.

Finally, in a commercial truck accident many parties may have liability for the harm done. A knowledgeable attorney will consider all of these possible defendants: the driver, drivers of other involved vehicles, the trucking company or truck owner, the maintenance company of the truck, the truck and truck parts’ manufacturers, the road designer, the road maintainer and more.

Last Updated : November 15, 2019