Most people refer to them as accidents. An accident implies it is unavoidable and no one should really be “punished” for what happened.
A skilled personal injury lawyer knows the questions to ask, the evidence to gather and most importantly how to tie it all together so a jury understands and makes a proper award for the injured person.
Most events start with small failures that lead to big consequences. For instance, big rig truckers know how much sleep they must get but often ignore the rules to get the shipment to its destination. Some shippers simply do not give the driver enough time to make the trip. A driver’s log is a good start but loading receipts can show when the shipment was picked up and where. Delivery instructions will give you the distance. To make the trip, the driver may need to either go 90 mile per hour or bend the rules on sleep. The jury needs to know all the events that lead up to the collision not just that the collision occurred. Was it really an accident if the driver had to drive at 90 mph to get to the delivery point on time? Or would you say the company should have known the risk it put the general public in for a few dollars.
We all hear about the texting driver. It seems that people are doing it more and more even with the information readily available that it is dangerous. Did you know that text messages can be recovered showing the time they were sent? What about the employer who texted the driver to find out where he was? Not a good choice and a very bad driving policy.
Drinking and driving of course are a bad combination. Yet annually people are killed or seriously injured by a drunk driver. Did you know that the driver may not be the only person liable? Under the Dram Shop Act, a bar could also be liable. Allowing a patron to continue to drink when it should be obvious that they should not and allowing them to leave to drive home can make the bar liable as well.
But how would you present that to the jury. One way is to start at the time of the collision and work backward in time so the jury can see the mistakes made along the way by everyone involved. Maybe the person showed up at the bar at 2:00 p.m. and drank until 9:00 p.m. Did he or she pay cash or credit card? Evidence abounds if you know where to look. Was there any food on the bill?
By now you get the idea that it is not just the crash the jury needs to hear about but the events that lead up to the crash. Big Rigs, cars and motorcycles all have rules of the road and must follow them. The jury needs to know not just what they did wrong but why…………..was it an accident or a failure to follow the rules.
If you are in a collision, remember, evidence vanishes quickly so seek legal help.