Truck drivers must maintain commercial licenses, only drive during certain hours, and meet other regulations set out by the government if they wish to avoid fines and citations. Violations of these regulations and mistakes can result in serious problems for others on the roads, including injuries, property damage, and death.
The Florida Highway Patrol is considering filing criminal charges against a truck driver who caused a number of serious problems on Interstate 4 westbound.
Collision between semi truck and Jeep closes off interstate highway
The incident began at about 6:30 am on the interstate near the exit for State Road 434 and mile marker 95. In this area, the truck hit an SUV and all of the westbound lanes needed to be closed for an extended period of time due to a large amount of debris. Officials believe that the semi truck was in the center lane and a Jeep was nearby in the left lane. The truck driver apparently tried to enter the left lane without seeing the Jeep, then quickly made an evasive maneuver to try to avoid a collision. However, the truck overturned and the Jeep was also struck by the trailer. The driver of the Jeep was not injured in the incident, but the truck driver did require treatment for minor injuries at a nearby hospital at Altamonte Springs.
Photos from the scene show that the semi trailer was carrying a large cargo of plywood that ended up strewn all over the road. Because of a gas leak and the pieces of wood all over the Interstate, the area was entirely closed for four hours while emergency crews worked to clear the scene. The Florida Department of Transportation reported that a ten mile long traffic backup and several smaller accidents occurred as a result of this same incident.
The accident occurred just north of Orlando near the city of Longwood. The driver of the truck was a 41 year old male from DeLand who could possibly face criminal charges for causing this situation.
Causation and multiple related accidents
A key inquiry will be whether the drivers involved in the smaller accidents can also file cases against the trucker who caused traffic delays and other problems. An important element of all negligence lawsuits is causation. For a plaintiff to prevail in a negligence case, there must be a factual determination that the defendant was both the actual cause and proximate cause of the plaintiff’s losses. This type of inquiry is highly dependent on the facts of each accident and it is often left to a jury if both sides cannot come to a settlement agreement before the trial begins.
Even if the truck driver is only found to be partially at fault for these additional collisions, the business that owns the vehicle may still have to pay some money to the victims. This is because fault can be divided to everyone involved in an accident under Florida law, and there is no level of negligence by a plaintiff that will totally prevent them from collecting from a defendant.
Speak with an Orlando truck accident lawyer
To find out more about how you can get help after an accident involving a commercial truck, locate a lawyer using the listings on USAttorneys.com. There are licensed legal professionals who serve Orlando, Florida and surrounding areas.