Merrillville, IN- An investigation into a fatal truck accident that occurred in Indiana in 2013 has revealed a troubling safety record for the truck driver and this trucking company. Now the family of the seven people, who were killed, are seeking justice and want the driver to face charges.
That accident took place one night in August of 2013 just south of Merrillville. According to reports, a Jeep, with seven occupants all from the same family, was traveling along I-65 as traffic began to slow for a construction zone. The Jeep slowed down, but the truck following it did not, and the big rig slammed into the vehicle, causing it strike another tractor-trailer and to erupt in a blaze.
All seven occupants of the Jeep were killed and now their family wants the truck driver and trucking company to be held accountable now that an investigation has shown the trucking company in question has a record of safety violations and citations from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
During their investigation, the truck driver, Howard Stratton, told police he was using his truck’s cruise control but applied the brakes when he saw traffic had stopped in front of him. Unfortunately, he was unable to stop and rear-ended the Jeep.
An Indy Channel 6 investigation following the accident found that Stratton had prior speeding tickets, two of which he received while behind the wheel of a commercial vehicle. For this tragic accident, police ruled out speed and intoxication as the cause. At the time police noted that Stratton’s log books were not filled out completely and failed to show how long he had been driving the day of the accident.
A more recent investigation found that the trucking company Stratton drove for, Griffin Transportation, based out of Grand Rapids, Michigan had at least 25 Hours of Service violations, a handful of which cited the company for not keep accurate log books, and for allowing their drivers to be on the road when they should be resting.
Hours of service rules are very important, these rules protect other motorists by keeping tired drivers off of the road. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration estimates that fatigued driving accounts for 13 percent of fatal truck accidents. If you or someone you love has been seriously injured or killed by a fatigued driver, our Merrillville truck accident attorneys will work exhaustively to get you the compensation you need.
Size and weight makes accidents involving tractor-trailers, tankers and other commercial vehicles more deadly and more likely result in devastating crash. While there are hundreds of truck drivers who are careful drivers who are very conscientious, there are plenty of bad apples in the bunch who act with little regard to the safety of others. If you are the victim of a reckless or negligent truck driver, our Indiana truck accident attorneys will provide you an unbeatable personal injury or wrongful death suit so you can get the compensation you desperately need for your medical expenses and emotional distress.