Trucks carry a huge amount of the cargo that passes through California, which sits at the crossroads of the world’s industry, commerce and agriculture. Drivers and pedestrians in the Golden State rely on the care of professional drivers to avoid problems or, worse, a disaster.
A truck driver is facing recent charges regarding an accident in which he may have criminally endangered traffic and caused the deaths of more than a dozen people. Authorities allege he stopped on the far right lane of Interstate 10 in Palm Springs due to congestion and dozed off.
A tour bus bound for Los Angeles behind the possibly sleeping driver’s rig continued moving when traffic moved and struck the back of the semi’s trailer. Thirteen passengers died and 31 others were injured in the collision, which may have occurred at high speed.
The driver of the truck faces 13 counts of felony vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence, as well as numerous counts of felony reckless driving and misdemeanor reckless driving with injury.
The case is complicated by indications that the driver violated federal regulations on truck transport and falsified his drivers log. This log is an important tool that ensures drivers do not work too long without sleeping.
Victims of motor vehicle accidents in which truck drivers are at fault are entitled to seek reimbursement for medical expenses and compensation for pain, emotional distress and lost wages due to recovery. An attorney with experience in personal injury may help determine the best path towards being made whole after a tragedy.
Source: USA Today, “Trucker charged with manslaughter in bus crash that killed 13 people in Palm Springs last year,” Barrett Newkirk, Brett Kelman and Colin Atagi, Oct. 19, 2017