A truck driver who caused a crash that killed an elderly woman and injured three others was convicted of reckless driving by a jury.
The distracted trucker, an Ohio man, was driving an empty Kroger truck in Michigan when he attempted to pass another truck and slammed into traffic he says he didn’t see until too late.
According to a forensic search of his phone, the driver had opened a Facebook quiz called “What Country in the World Best Fits Your Personality” moments before the crash.
“He was not at all attentive as to what was happening in front of his 30,000-pound vehicle,” said one of the prosecuting attorneys.
A toxicology report also indicated that the distracted trucker had evidence of painkillers in his blood stream at the time of the crash, according to prosecutors. The driver denied that he was intoxicated, but indicated he had taken a prescription pain killer the evening before to treat pain associated with sickle cell anemia.
According to one witness, the distracted trucker did not hit the brakes before crashing into several cars. The driver admitted to speeding – going 65 miles per hour in a 60-mph speed zone.
The driver testified in the trial stating “”I would never, ever get my CDL license in the first place. I wish you met me before the accident. I wish I could take this back.”
The jury convicted the distracted trucker of three felonies and three misdemeanors on Oct. 13, 2017. He will be sentenced on Dec. 6, 2017, but remains free on a $25,000 bond.
Distracted Truckers May Cause Accidents
Distracted driving due to cell phone use is rising nationally. Distracted driving is incredibly dangerous for regular motorists, and even more so for truckers with 30,000 pound vehicles. Unfortunately, trucking companies often try to shirk their responsibility to victims of distracted truckers when they cause accidents.
While it can be difficult to prove that a trucker was distracted when they caused an accident, victims who are aware of the tricks trucking companies will use can help protect their legal rights.
Trucking companies often try to delay legal action after an accident. They know that the victims of the accident are hurting, losing income, and just want to put the nightmare behind them. Trucking companies and their insurance carriers often try to low-ball accident victims with a minimal settlement.
Trucking companies and their insurance carriers also try to get victims to make a statement to escape liability. It is important for law enforcement to conduct a thorough investigation, but accident victims should know that they are not required to make a statement to the trucking company or their insurance carrier.
The network of laws and regulations that apply to truckers can be confusing for an accident victim. It is important to consider obtaining experienced legal help if you or a loved one has been injured by a distracted trucker.
If you’ve been injured in a commercial semi-truck accident, contact the attorneys at McDonald Worley to discuss your legal options.. The case evaluation is FREE, so call today!