Jury Returns $3.8 Million Verdict for Injuries Allegedly Caused by Drugged Truck Driver
Our Atlanta truck accident attorneys at Montlick and Associates recognize the potentially devastating consequences when truck drivers disregard trucking industry safety rules, and trucking companies look the other way. While most truck drivers are conscientious and professional, unfortunately this is not always the case. The enormous force of impact generated when a big-rig slams into another vehicle can cause permanent injuries that prevent the ability of a trucking accident victim to continue working and participating in routine daily activities. When a person is injured in a big-rig collision, an investigation to gather and preserve evidence is essential to establish the cause of the crash and wrongful conduct by the driver and trucking company.
A recent federal $3.8 million jury verdict against a trucking company, which occurred when a big-rig on I-20 in the greater Atlanta area slammed into a stopped semi-truck, serves as an example of the types of evidence which are important to proving liability in trucking cases. The plaintiff Allen Pace, who served in Bosnia and Afghanistan, suffered debilitating injuries when the tractor-trailer driven by the defendant struck the plaintiff's vehicle at an estimated speed of 60 to 65 miles per hour according to the Daily Report.
The evidence presented at trial established an alarming example of extremely unsafe trucking practices. According to court documents, the plaintiff's semi-truck was stopped with the flashing lights activated on I-20 in Newton County because of an interruption in the flow of traffic. The court documents allege that the defendant went "flying past" sheriff's deputies directing traffic around construction at the location. Evidence was presented that the defendant did not brake or attempt to reduce his speed before slamming into the plaintiff's vehicle. The impact, which was estimated at four million pounds of force, propelled the plaintiff's truck nearly the distance of a football field.
Chemical testing of the defendant revealed that he had high levels of opiates and Xanax in his blood at the time of the collision. His pockets were also filled with pills according to the court documents. An individual that was traveling with the defendant truck driver indicated that the trucker had been chewing Xanax and Percocet and washing them down with whiskey for five straight days prior to the crash.
The truck driver's abuse of prescription medications was compounded by other forms of egregious behavior. Several physicians testified that the trucker suffered from sleep apnea and apparently dozed off immediate prior to the collision. Evidence also was presented that the defendant lied about a heart condition under oath during his physicals to protect his commercial driver's license. He was taking multiple medications for the condition that cause drowsiness.
If you are injured in a collision caused by a truck driver who is impaired by drugs or a medical condition, you might have a right to financial compensation. Our truck accident attorneys at Montlick and Associates have been representing those who suffer serious injuries throughout all of Georgia and the Southeast for over thirty years, including all smaller cities and rural areas in the state.
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