One common type of vehicle accident frequently seen nationwide is the trucking accident. Trucking accidents are often very serious, and may even result in fatalities to the average motorist. Nationwide, in the year 2014, truck and bus accidents resulted in nearly 4,000 deaths. While truck accidents can be threatening, a recent settlement in a federal personal injury case could potentially make the roads safer for all motorists.
The case was against the North Carolina yarn manufacturing company Unifi. The case was brought on by a couple who were struck by the company's truck as they were slowing down to pull into their driveway. The lawsuit alleged that the truck driver was talking on a cell phone, which led to the accident. During the case, certain alarming facts came to light regarding the company's practices involving their driver's cell phone usage. When the accident occurred, Unifi had a company policy that the company's drivers could only use their phones for a period of time longer than two minutes. In addition, drivers had to make use of a wireless, hands-free device in order to use their phones. The driver in the lawsuit had a call log that indicated that he had been using a cellphone for over seven hours. His shift was 8 hours long. Further examination into Unifi's call log documents showed that other drivers also exhibited similar patterns of behavior when it came to cell phone usage. Essentially, Unifi held a policy that it was not making an effort to enforce. In a deposition, the driver stated he was not using his phone, but during the trial, he stated that the phone was connected, but not in active use or conversation. The driver also claimed that the couple had stopped with their lights off in front of their house, however, this was later refuted by the black-box records of the car itself.
The case was eventually brought to a settlement during its trial phase. The lawsuit settled for over $3.75 million in damages, and also Unifi imposing a company-wide ban on drivers using devices while on the road.
The Federal Motor Carrier Association had prior regulations set for truck drivers nationwide to only allow for hands-free usage, however, the association allows individual companies to maintain their own individual operation standards. In response to this, the attorney representing the couple struck by Unifi's truck went on to state that federal law may provide a minimum standard but it does not necessarily mean it is the safest standard. The lawsuit may go on to encourage trucking companies nationwide to take greater measures to ensure their drivers are obeying the laws of the road, and the company rules when it comes to cell phone usage.
If you or a loved one has been injured, you may have a case. Contact the Brod Law Firm today.
Philadelphia Truck Accident Lawyers at The Brod Law Firm Pursue Compensation for Victims Struck by Automobiles
If you or someone you know has been injured in a collision with a truck you may be entitled to compensation. The experienced Philadelphia truck accident attorneys at The Brod Law Firm have a well established track record of helping clients who have been involved in automobile accidents with trucks pursue compensation for medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering. With offices conveniently located in Philadelphia, Reading, Bala Cynwyd and Centre Square, Pennsylvania we serve clients throughout central and southeastern Pennsylvania. To schedule a consultation, call us at 888-435-7946 (888-HELPWIN) for an immediate free no obligation telephone consultation and explanation of your legal rights. We have the option of an easy phone sign-up process or contact us online and we can begin work today.