Rising Truck Accident Fatalities Lead to New Scrutiny

By Peter DePaolis

According to a report in the New Jersey Star-Ledger, the Walmart truck that flipped Tracy Morgan’s limo recently was ultramodern in its technology.

The high-tech cab was fitted with sophisticated collision-avoidance systems, forward-looking radar and interactive cruise control, plus an on-board computer, blind spot sensors and electronic controls limiting its speed to 65 mph. Most importantly, the truck included a sensor designed to not only notify the driver of any vehicles stopped on the highway, but also to begin braking the massive tractor-trailer automatically in such a case.

None of that mattered though, since as we have previously reported on this blog, the driver was allegedly fast asleep at the wheel.

It is thought that the truck driver, charged with vehicular homicide and four counts of assault by auto, had been awake for close to 24 hours straight. Investigators are still attempting to figure out the exact chain of events.

In addition to the Tracy Morgan crash, there have been three other fatal truck crashes in New Jersey recently, according to NJ.com. The rash of deadly wrecks has prompted the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to join the State Police’s investigation into the Morgan incident.

“The NTSB is focusing on broader issues concerning commercial truck safety, such as vehicle maintenance, medical qualifications, drug and alcohol testing of drivers, driver fatigue, equipment and technology,” said a spokesman for the NTSB.

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Source: http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2014/06/rising_truck_fatalities_nationwide_leading_to_new_scrutiny_in_wake_of_tracy_morgan_crash.html

About the Author
Peter DePaolis joined the firm in 1980 and has since represented a large number of individuals involved in automobile collisions, truck accidents, bus crashes, defective products, and medical malpractice cases. A significant portion of Mr. DePaolis’ practice is devoted to working on behalf of people suffering from asbestosis, mesothelioma, and other asbestos-related cancers. He has led his firm’s fight against the asbestos industry and has recovered over $30 million in damages for asbestos victims and their families.