Truck accidents can be caused by a variety of factors, including driving while tired. This is apparently true regarding an accident in which a Connecticut Department of Transportation supervisor was killed while he was working. Recently, a jury awarded his estate $7.3 million and believes that driver fatigue may have been a contributing factor.
The accident happened back in 2012 when a man was working on Route 8 picking up debris from the side of the road. He parked his truck and ensured that his emergency lights were flashing before he exited his vehicle. A female tractor-trailer driver suddenly drifted onto the shoulder and struck the man.
In 2013, the employer of the tractor-trailer's driver claimed that she was not at fault for the accident even though she pleaded guilty to misconduct with a motor vehicle. Reportedly, the driver of the tractor-trailer had misrepresented how long she had been behind the wheel prior to the crash. Apart from the criminal charges, the estate of the Department of Transportation's supervisor filed a wrongful death claim, which resulted in the jury returning a verdict in favor of the plaintiff.
Driver fatigue can put a number of people on the road in jeopardy and can also cause accidents. It's the duty of truck drivers to pull over when they are feeling drowsy. Surviving families, who have lost loved ones as a result of a truck driver's actions, may have the right to file wrongful death claims against the driver and any separate owner of the vehicle. Injured truck accident victims may also have similar rights under Connecticut personal injury laws to recover damages for pain and suffering and lost wages.
Source: Connecticut Law Tribune, "Trucking Company Loses $7.3 Million Wrongful Death Suit", Christian Nolan, Oct. 22, 2014