A four vehicle crash involving a tractor trailer truck left a portion of Tampa’s Bruce B. Downs Boulevard shut down for 10 hours from around 11 pm on May 12th until almost 9 am on the following morning. The driver of the semi Truck was unfamiliar with the area around the northbound exit of I-75 and Bruce B. Downs. Thomas Jonovich mistakenly disregarded a traffic signal at the intersection, failing to recognize his need to stop at the red light until it was too late. As a result, the truck skidded through the intersection and crashed into three vehicles waiting for the light to change.
Two of the vehicle became wedged under the trailer of the semi tractor-trailer truck and were dragged along the roadway in what is commonly known as a truck underride collision. These extremely dangerous accidents generally occur when a passenger vehicle driver collides with the trailer of a large truck and becomes wedged between the bottom of the trailer and the road. These accidents are extremely violent and often result in very serious injuries to the passengers of the smaller vehicle. While this particular underride crash was caused by the driver of the Large truck, the result was to be expected. All three fellow drivers were taken to area hospitals by EMS with injuries. Fortunately, as of Sunday morning, none of the drivers were suffering life-threatening injuries or complications.
Inattention to the roadway is one of the most common causes of vehicle collisions today. Often drivers attempt to multitask on the roadway. It is extremely common to witness passenger vehicle drivers texting or talking on the phone, applying makeup, or even sometimes reading. Just yesterday I witnessed a man driving a red convertible, smoking a cigarette, and texting all at the same time. Statistics gathered in a study performed by Car and Driver magazine, suggest that texting or reading e-mails while driving is significantly more dangerous that being driving with a legally impaired blood alcohol level. This means that drivers who are not paying attention to the road is the most dangerous threat on the roadway today.
It is unclear whether Thomas Jonovich was driving his eighteen-wheeler while distracted. However, when a tractor-trailer truck driver fails to recognize a red light governing the intersection he is approaching, asking how much attention he was paying to the road is completely reasonable. In this case, the driver claimed to be unfamiliar with the area he was driving in, another common cause of commercial truck accidents. In either case, Mr. Jonovich negligently caused injuries to at least three people, which makes him liable for the damage that those other drivers suffered. In cases like this, it’s very important that drivers know their rights and understand that the at-fault truck driver has insurance to cover the damage. Contacting an experienced truck accident attorney following a collision with a commercial vehicle is vital to protecting your rights. Call one of the experienced personal injury attorneys at Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA if you or someone close to you needs help in recovering from a large truck accident.