When a vehicle breaks down or runs of gas in a lane of traffic, especially on an interstate or expressway, the effects can be devastating. Just today, a man from Orange Park died when his vehicle was struck from behind by an 18 wheeler on Interstate 95 in Flagler County near Palm Coast. The accident happened in the early morning hours and the car may not have had its lights on. The reason for the car being stopped on the interstate is not currently known.
Our attorneys have handled numerous serious injury cases resulting from an accident with a vehicle broken down on an interstate or expressway. Vehicle owners who fail to properly maintain their vehicles or who run out of gas will be responsible for personal injuries or wrongful death that results from an accident. It is also necessary that the operator of the car or truck remove it from lanes of traffic as soon as possible. Commercial trucks, including tractor trailers, are also required to put out traffic cones so as to warn oncoming drivers of the lane obstruction ahead.
Our lawyers handled a case where a man suffered serious personal injuries after colliding with a moving truck broken down in the outside lane of I-95 in Nassau County, just north of the Duval County line. The moving truck was broken down for hours before the collision occurred. The insurer for the moving company tried to blame our injured client by claiming that he should have seen the truck and avoided it like so many other drivers did in the hours that the truck was obstructing I-95.
We were able to prevail by demonstrating that the truck failed to properly put out required warning signs and failed to have the truck removed in a timely fashion. Also, the claim that our client was negligent was not credible due to the fact that the accident happened shortly after dark, during rush hour, and occurred just after our client changed from the middle lane to the outside lane immediately prior to the location of the truck, preventing him from being able to see it in time to react.
We also recently made a recovery for all of the available insurance coverage limits (both bodily injury and uninsured motorist coverages) for a woman who suffered serious spinal disc injuries when the car in which she was a passenger struck a vehicle broken down on the Dames Point Bridge.
Surprisingly, the car in which our client was riding had dash cam footage of the accident. The footage showed the other car stopped in the outside lane. As the Dames Point Bridge has no emergency lane, the broken down vehicle was obstructing more than half of the lane. The owner of that car placed a cooler in the road to warn oncoming drivers; however, the cooler was only a few yards from the car, providing very little notice.
The driver of the car our client was in failed to observe the other car in the interstate and drove straight into it without braking our changing lanes. With the dash cam, it was clear that that driver had several seconds to react before the collision. As a result both the driver of the car our client was in and the driver of the broken down car were responsible for causing the accident.
If you have questions about an injury claim resulting from a trucking or car accident, please contact our Jacksonville lawyers for a free no obligation consultation.