Truck Driver Involved in Tracy Morgan Crash Indicted by Grand Jury
The driver of a truck that was involved in an accident that seriously injured comedian Tracy Morgan and killed another man in his vehicle on June 7, 2014, was indicted by a grand jury on Wednesday.
According to a report by the Associated Press and wkrn.com, the man was charged with first-degree aggravated manslaughter, second-degree vehicular homicide, and third-degree aggravated assault for his role in the accident.
The man was driving a Wal-Mart truck when the accident occurred on the New Jersey Turnpike more than a year and a half ago. In August, the National Transportation Safety Board investigated the crash and determined that the driver hadn’t slept in the 28 hours preceding the crash.
In addition, the report also found that the driver failed to reduce his speed in the moments before the accident occurred, despite several warning signs on the turnpike urging motorists to slow down.
Occupants of Morgan’s vehicle were also cited for not wearing seat belts and adjusting headrests, which may have contributed to the severity of their injuries when their limousine was struck from behind by the truck.
What Are Common Causes of Truck Accidents?
Because of their weight and size, truck that are involved in accidents with passenger vehicles are a major cause of traffic fatalities. All car accidents can be serious, but when a semi-truck or tractor-trailer is involved, disabling and life-threatening injuries are far more common than accidents involving one or two passenger vehicles. Although truck drivers are held to higher standards than other drivers, truck accidents can still occur due to a variety of factors—including driver error.
Some of the most common causes of truck accidents include:
- Sleep-deprived and fatigued drivers
Truck drivers are required by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to take regular breaks when they’re working in order to remain fully alert and cautious while behind the wheel. However, many truck drivers exceed their daily or weekly driving limits in order to maximize their profits and complete their quotas ahead of schedule. However, drivers on the roadway who are sleep-deprived and fatigued pose serious risks to themselves and other motorists.
- Overloaded trucks and unbalanced cargo
In order for trucks to be safe on the roadway, they need to be stable at all speeds and while turning on a tight radius. Trucks that are overloaded in order to deliver more goods in a single trip, or trucks that are unbalanced due to negligent loading procedures can be more difficult for drivers to control in certain road conditions. When trucks are severely overloaded or unbalanced, they may be at high risk of flipping over and causing serious accidents.
- Irregular maintenance schedules
It’s not uncommon for tractor-trailers to accumulate hundreds of thousands of miles in a single year, especially when they are used to transport goods across the country. Because of the extreme distance and mileage that trucks rack up in a short amount of time, it’s vital that they are repaired and maintained on a frequent schedule. Trucks with worn down tires, brakes, lights, and other critical components may fail at any time, causing drivers to lose control and collide without vehicles or flip over in the middle of the road.
Trucks are a vital part of the economy in the United States and Tennessee, and the vast majority of both trucks and truck drivers are safe and follow recommended safety guidelines. However, all it takes is a negligent driver, truck company, or truck owner to overlook a vital aspect of truck safety for a serious accident to occur. At Matt Hardin Law, our Nashville truck accident attorneys know that innocent drivers are injured every year in truck accidents caused by negligence, and the expenses they incur can be significant.
If you or someone you love was injured in a truck accident caused by a negligence or carelessness, you may be eligible to receive compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and vehicle repair costs. It’s our goal to help you get the money you deserve to move forward with your life during this time. Get in touch with us today by dialing (615) 200-1111 or completing a free online consultation form and let us put our two decades of experience to work for your family.