All too often in West Virginia, people are injured when a cargo tank rolls over on the highway. Many such accidents are preventable, but they still occur. According to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration statistics, more than 1,300 such rollover accidents occur every year across the country.
While tire technology has improved in numerous ways in recent decades, tire blowouts can still occur. In fact, it can be argued that their rarity only increases the hazards that a blown tire represents.
Imagine yourself driving down a highway. Immediately ahead of you is a large commercial truck. This truck is going more slowly than you would like to be going, but you are unsure of whether or not you should try to pass it because you cannot see properly around it. What do you do? Do you take a risk or do you drive slowly behind the truck until you can make absolutely sure that it is safe to pass the massive vehicle?
Nearly one year ago, the acclaimed comedian Tracy Morgan and several others were traveling in a limousine van when a tractor-trailer owned by retail giant Walmart slammed into the back of it. The accident killed a fellow comedian and seriously injured Mr. Morgan. After months of negotiations, a settlement has been reached in the case filed by Mr. Morgan’s attorneys in the wake of the crash.
Most of the time, you likely have little reason to be concerned with the insurance needs of individuals outside your own family. However, there are instances in which the insurance minimums and rates paid by others may directly impact you. For example, if you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, the kind of insurance that other drivers involved in the crash have access to may impact the amount of compensation that you receive as a result of the accident.
Earlier this month, the administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced that the agency will be seeking swift action on the matter of electronic speed limiters for the nation's large commercial trucks. This is an important safety development, given how destructive big rigs can be when they are traveling above a reasonable speed.
Earlier this year, Farmer Cline & Campbell was awarded the esteemed 2014 Litigator Award. This honor is granted only to the top one percent of trial attorneys and firms nationally.
Nearly 10 years ago, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration began the regulatory process tied to implementation of a specific part of the agency’s Compliance, Safety, Accountability program. Regulatory actions are often notoriously delayed, so it comes as little surprise that the Safety Fitness Determination element of the CSA has yet to be implemented. However, it seems that this important part of the CSA may soon be affecting commercial drivers nationwide.
In our last post, we began a discussion of the frustrating fact that it is not always possible to make steady progress towards the goal of ensuring that the American public remains safe while on the road. We mentioned that one factor complicating motor vehicle safety trends is the unfortunate rollback of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s revised hours of service requirement. This requirement was designed to reduce truck driver fatigue and to reduce the prevalence of fatigue-related truck accidents.
It can be truly discouraging when progress is not being made in regards to important issues. Americans expect our lawmakers, medical researchers, scientists, educators and a host of other professionals to make steady progress towards improving the common good. And perhaps there is no greater expectation of progress than that placed upon safety regulators. When ensuring the safety of the public is a safety agency’s primary task, Americans expect steady progress towards that goal.