Tired Trucker Causes Fatal Crash
Written By: Rheingold, Valet, Rheingold, Ruffo & Giuffra LLP
By Scott D. Kagan
The driver of an SUV traveling on Niagara Falls Boulevard in the City of Niagara Falls was involved in a fatal head on collision with a southbound tractor-trailer driven by one of the defendants. Inside the SUV were passengers, including the driver's wife and two children, ages 22 and 17. After the initial impact, the SUV spun before being struck by a sanitation truck. The driver and his wife, a front seated passenger, sustained fatal injuries in the accident.
The deceased wife and the two children as plaintiffs alleged negligence on the part of all three drivers. More specifically, it was alleged that the driver of the tractor-trailer crossed the centerline, initiating contact as a result of fatigue and inexperience. Further allegations included that the sanitation truck was tailgating the tractor-trailer. To support their allegations, plaintiffs retained an expert accident reconstructionist by the name of Christopher Puckett.
As a result of their traumatic injuries, the plaintiffs settled the suit pre-trial in the amount of $5,000,000. The older daughter, a student, sustained open depressed fractures of her skull; fractures of her C5, C6, C7 and L4 vertebrae; a comminuted fracture of her right shoulder's scapula; a fracture of the left clavicle and multiple rib fractures. In addition she suffered tears, brain damage and multiple surgeries. Meanwhile the younger daughter sustained a skull fracture, a de-gloving laceration of her scalp; fractures of the face and nose; with brain damage resulting in a coma. She also suffered multiple thoracic vertebrae fractures; a displaced fracture of the right hip's femur and multiple pelvic fractures. As a result of the death of their mother, the children after fees and costs will split the remains of the $5,000,000.