Improper Lane Change Crash Caused by Truck Driver
In the State of Florida, it is common to see large trucks and semi tractor trailers on the streets, roads, highways and expressways. While most drivers do their best to avoid crashes and accidents, there are some dangers on the road that cannot be avoided and, in turn, result in a significant Florida car accident. One such car accident case that can be quite devastating involves a crash with a semi tractor trailer. Commercial truck drivers have a duty to drive the truck / semi tractor trailer in a safe and reasonable manner taking into account the size of the truck driven, the presence of other vehicles on the road, weather conditions, speed limits, traffic regulations, road construction, and traffic. One errant maneuver by a truck driver can have a life-long effect on other drivers and passengers on the same road. A common accident that takes place with a commercial truck or semi tractor trailer involves an improper or unsafe lane change. Truck drivers require training and testing to obtain a commercial driver's license.
David Wolf is a Jacksonville, Florida truck accident attorney who handles cases and represents injury victims throughout the State of Florida. He is the author of the book titled - Big Trucks - Big Problems - When a Truck Driver Wrecks Your Day and Life - Legal Rights of the Injury Victim and Family. You can get this book for free by visiting of the Contact Us Page of this website. You can read more about the book at Big Trucks - Big Problems.
Section 316.085 - Limitations on Overtaking, Passing, Changing Lanes and Changing Course - sets forth the Florida law on point for lane changes. A truck driver should check to make sure that it is safe to make a lane change without interfering with the safe operation of another vehicle traveling in the same direction. Due to the size of most commercial truck vehicles and semi tractor trailers, it is important for the truck driver to exercise caution and diligence before attempting a lane change. Turn signals should be utilized and if there is any doubt or concern about the safety of a lane change - the truck driver should wait until it is more safe to do so.
There are four elements of a truck accident case or claim which are the following: Duty, Breach of Duty, Causation, and Damages. Let's discuss a sample case to illustrate how these elements are applied. There is a duty on behalf of truck driver to exercise due caution when changing lanes. Let's say a truck driver is driving 75 miles per hour in a 60 miles per hour zone. While traveling at this high rate of speed, the truck driver abruptly changes lanes and crashes into a passenger vehicle which is pushed off the side of the road and crashes into a guard file. The police arrive on the scene and assess the situation. A traffic citation is issued to the truck driver. The driver of the passenger vehicle is taken to the hospital via fire rescue. Thereafter, the injury victim undergoes 6 months of treatment including pain management for injuries to his neck which include herniated disc. Under this fact scenario, it would appear that the elements of a case can be established. There was a duty to driver in safe and reasonable manner. The truck driver breached the duty by speeding and abruptly changing lanes. This, in turn, caused a crash which produced personal injuries. The damages caused by the truck accident included the total loss of the vehicle, medical bills insured by the victim, and personal injuries in the form of neck pain and herniated discs in the neck.
Even through the facts seem somewhat clear cut, there is still likely to be a battle as to the cause of the injuries and the severity of the injuries. Insurance companies and truck companies often hire medical doctors and consultants who have made a very comfortable living challenging the cause and severity of the personal injuries of victims. As such, it is important for the injury victim to be treated by quality doctors who are experienced with trauma, accident related injuries, and, yes, testifying in court when necessary.
Contact lawyer David Wolf today for a Free Consultation if you have suffered a persona injury as a result of the negligence of a truck driver. Get D Wolf On Your Side - At Your Side.