Driver of a parked truck and his employer may be liable for traffic death.
A truck accident on the San Diego Freeway last Wednesday took one life and injured another. The driver of a 1990 Ford Econoline died when his van veered off the southbound 405 Freeway in Irvine, the morning of June 29 and collided with a truck, according to a report in the Los Angeles Times.
The Times reported that the unidentified van driver drifted off the right shoulder of the freeway near Culver Drive and struck a parked, stake-bed truck which was carrying electrical equipment. The driver of the parked truck, William Cortez, 24, of Santa Ana, was taken to Western Medical Center-Santa Ana with mild to moderate injuries.
The driver of the parked truck could be liable for millions in dollars in damages, depending upon the facts. The Times report stated that the truck was not blocking traffic.
If the truck was parked illegally in a vehicle recovery zone, their is a substantial chance that the truck driver could be charged criminally and civilly for the death of the van driver. Even though the van driver hit a parked truck, if the van driver would not have died if the truck had not been illegally parked, the truck driver would be civilly liable for the van driver’s death.
If the truck driver is on the job, moving electrical equipment for his employer, then his employer will likely be economically responsible for the death of the van driver as well. In many situations, an employer is legally responsible for the acts of his/her employees. If the van driver was a wage earner with a family, his heirs could be entitled to millions of dollars in damages.
If the truck was legally parked and not otherwise an unreasonable danger, than it is unlikely that there would be any liability on the part of the truck’s driver or his employer. Again, it will depend upon the facts. The driver of the van could certainly be responsible for the truck driver’s injuries. If the truck driver was on the job at the time of the accident, the truck driver will be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits as well as his rights against the van driver.
The parked truck accident scenario is more common than you may think. We have handled a number of them. Some have been on freeways and highways and others have been on surface streets. We have been successful in recovery money for our clients in everyone of them.
Presently we are representing the wife and children of a man killed when his vehicle struck an illegally parked big rig. Based upon our investigation and our experts reconstruction of the accident, it is clear, but for the illegally parked big rig, the deceased vehicle driver would have continue to skid out until it came to a stop. There would have been no collision and no death.
Generally, we are able to quickly determine who is fault in an accident by conducting an immediate professional investigation and having the accident reconstructed by our experts.
For more information on this subject, please refer to our section on Car and Motorcycle Accidents.