Examining the Causes of a Deadly Ohio Truck/Pedestrian Accident

After a motor vehicle crash, police officers usually fill out an accident report to record details from the scene of the wreck as well as witness accounts. The accident report provides basic information that can be used to determine which driver or drivers were at fault. Law enforcement officers, however, do not have the resources or time to conduct an intensive investigation.

Personal injury lawyers who understand crash investigation and accident reconstruction are often able to uncover critical pieces of evidence pertaining to the liability and damages resulting from a crash.

Ohio Pedestrian Killed by Large Truck

Take a recent fatal Ohio truck accident involving a pedestrian victim as an example. WHIO-TV reported that a semi-truck traveling south on Interstate 75 between Interstate 675 and State Route 725 hit a 45-year-old woman who was crossing the highway on foot at approximately two in the morning.

The TV station quoted Sgt. John Chesser of the Ohio State Highway Patrol that excessive speed apparently played no role in the fatal crash. Troopers told WHIO that there appeared to be nothing the truck driver could have done to avoid hitting the woman, who had apparently abandoned her car a short distance away.

Factors to Investigate in Fatal Truck Crashes

There are a number of factors that should be investigated before concluding that there was no negligence or wrongdoing on the part of the truck driver:

  • Were the truck's headlights in working order? Were they on?
  • Was the driver distracted at the time of the deadly crash or immediately before it? (A check of cellphone records could help determine this.)
  • Did the driver receive the mandatory amount of rest before the shift he was on at the time of the deadly crash? (Checking the driver's log could help determine this.)
  • Were the 18-wheeler's brakes in working condition? Were they applied?
  • What, if any, evasive action was taken by the driver? Was the truck properly loaded, allowing the driver to properly brake and conduct evasive actions?
  • Were the emergency lights flashing on the woman's vehicle? Did the truck driver notice them?

Determining Liability

It's easy enough for law enforcement to test a trucker for blood alcohol content and the presence of prescription or illegal drugs in his system. But determining liability in crashes is not always as simple as assessing whether a driver was intoxicated.

In many cases, families of survivors have strong reason to believe a police accident report doesn't add up or give a full accounting of what happened to their loved one. In these situations, people typically contact a personal injury attorney experienced in accident investigation and wrongful death litigation. An Ohio personal injury lawyer can assess the facts of the case, determine if further investigation is warranted, and help survivors pursue compensation for their tragic loss.