According to a recent WBALTV news report, Howard County Police are investigating a crash involving a tractor-trailer that critically injured a man. The accident, which happened last week at the intersection of Interstate 70 and Marriottsville Road near Ellicott City, occurred when a Toyota Tundra struck a tractor-trailer as it turned into the southbound lane from westbound I-70. The driver of the Tundra was taken to Shock Trauma in Baltimore, and is listed in critical condition. The tractor-trailer driver did not suffer any injury in the crash. Officials have stated that the investigation into which party was at fault is ongoing.
This accident is yet another in a recent string of Maryland motor vehicle accidents involving semi-trucks or tractor-trailers. In April, a police officer was injured when a semi-truck driver lost control of his vehicle on the University of Maryland Medical Center campus and struck several parked vehicles, one of which contained the officer. In January of last year, five motorist were taken to a local hospital with injuries following another Ellicott City accident when a vehicle containing four passengers collided with a Mack truck.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (“NHTSA”), 8.2 percent of all traffic fatalities occurring in 2011 involved large trucks. In Maryland, there were 692 motor vehicle accident fatalities, 38 of which were caused by crashes involving large trucks. The USDOT study concluded that with the new HOS regulations approximately 1,400 crashes, 560 injuries, and 19 accident deaths will be avoided each year.
As demonstrated by these incidents, because of the immense weight and considerable size of semi-trucks, proper operation of these vehicles is of particular importance. Negligence behind the wheel of such a vehicle can easily result in catastrophe and severe injuries or death. The victims of such accidents have a right to be able to obtain recovery for their injuries from the negligent driver. When the negligence of a driver results in the death of another, under Maryland law, the decedent’s family may be entitled to bring a wrongful death action.
A wrongful death claim can be brought against anyone who, through recklessness, carelessness, negligence or lack of skill, causes the fatality of another. Damages in a wrongful death action are measured in terms of the injury to loved ones caused by the death of the victim, and can include loss of future earnings, loss of companionship, and pain and suffering. Sadly, wrongful death actions can arise from myriad unfortunate circumstances, including drunk driving or reckless driving, medical malpractice (such as through surgical error or misdiagnosis of an illness), defective machinery or products, premises liability, or improper supervision.
The qualified attorneys of Brassel, Alexander & Rice, LLC have extensive experience representing individuals who have been injured or killed by the negligent acts of another. If you or someone you know has been injured or killed as a result of the negligence of another person, contact the attorneys of Brassel, Alexander & Rice, LLC today.