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Two Recent Deadly Georgia Trucking Accidents: What You Need to Know

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Eighteen wheeler fatalities are one of the biggest threats facing drivers today. In the age of distracted driving, these multi-ton trucks can be extremely dangerous. Even if drivers are not distracted, human error can lead to horrific accidents, which often result in injury or even death. In this article, we’ll inform you of two recent deadly Georgia trucking accidents and how you can stay safe while driving Georgia’s truck-filled highways. 

According to defensivedriving.org, which cites the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in its list of safety tips, over 4000 fatalities are connected to eighteen wheelers each year.  

At Mark’s Law Group, we are committed to helping you stay safe and partnering with you when you or a loved one has been a victim of eighteen wheeler accidents or eighteen wheeler fatalities. With this goal in mind, here is some information you should know about eighteen wheelers.

Background on Eighteen Wheelers

Eighteen wheelers evolved from small trailers designed to pull one vehicle behind another. As the design evolved, they were built so that only one person was needed to attach the vehicle to the trailer.

The design then changed so that the trailers could accommodate even more cars. Finally, additional wheels were added to the trailers, and they began to carry all kinds of freight, not just cars. 

Today, eighteen wheelers are commonplace. Trucks carry everything from groceries to Amazon packages across state lines and across the country. 

Of course, they are traveling the same roads as regular vehicles, with families traveling in their cars right beside the big rigs. 

This presents a variety of safety concerns that regulators aim to address. Some current in-place safety regulations for eighteen wheelers include:

  • Weigh stations
  • Lane restrictions
  • Required sleep time for drivers
  • Hands-free driving laws

Trucker drivers are supposed to be highly trained in how keep others safe. When eighteen wheeler incidents do occur, however, they can have life-altering consequences.

Recent Eighteen Wheeler Fatalities and Lawsuits

Despite the efforts of regulators, drivers, and transportation companies, accidents and fatalities still occur, and the metro Atlanta area is unfortunately no stranger to eighteen wheeler fatalities and lawsuits. 

Five Georgia Southern University Nursing Students Killed 

Georgia has seen its fair share of eighteen wheeler fatalities in recent years. One particularly tragic case occurred in 2015, when five Georgia Southern University students were killed in a multiple-vehicle accident involving two eighteen wheelers and seven cars. The students were on their way from Statesboro to Savannah for their last day of clinical rotations as first-year nursing students. 

A jury awarded Megan Richards, one of the two survivors of the crash, $15 million in January of 2017. (The other survivor had previously settled with the trucking company, Total Transportation of Mississippi, whose parent company is US Express).

In court, the driver, John Wayne Johnson, apologized for the crash, for which was sentenced to five years in prison. 

The day of the accident, Johnson was driving 70 MPH and failed to brake despite a long line of stopped traffic in front of him, killing the five nursing students. 

This horrible tragedy forever changed the lives of the victims involved, and it highlights the potential dangers eighteen wheelers can cause on our roadways. 

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If you are in a eighteen wheeler accident in Atlanta, it is important to know what steps to take to protect yourself at the scene. Call the Marks Law Group at 404-939-1485 for help. Photo Credit: Carlos Ebert via Flickr Creative Commons.

Georgia Woman Killed When Two Eighteen-wheeler Tires Fall Off

Another recent, local example occurred in August 2019. Two tires fell off the rear axle of an eighteen wheeler, bouncing across the median and killing a Georgia woman in front of her parents and child as it hit her car, which was traveling in the opposite direction. 

The driver was charged with second-degree vehicular homicide for travelling on defective tires and unsafe equipment, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. 

Eighteen Wheeler incidents like this one are tragic and impact many lives. Responsible parties must be held accountable.

Conclusion and How Marks Law Can Help

Eighteen Wheeler Fatalities are a concern for drivers on Georgia’s roadways. At Mark’s Law Group, we want to provide you with information that could help keep you and your loved ones safe. 

Know that drivers are highly trained and most follow the rules and work hard to keep you safe.

Do your part by practicing the following safety tips from defensivedriving.org, which provides a comprehensive list:

  • Don’t text and drive.
  • Don’t tailgate.
  • Don’t cut off big trucks or other vehicles. 
  • Know where trucks are.
  • Do not ride right next to a truck.
  • Pass trucks quickly, and remember they have a blind spot.
  • Give trucks room to turn.
  • Watch for signals.
  • Give trucks the right of way when possible.
  • Be wary of tire blowouts.
  • Notice what truckers are doing during inclement weather.
  • Look out for drifting, especially during windy weather. 
  • Be a responsible driver. Do not drive distracted, follow traffic laws, and never engage in road rage. 

We hope these tips can help keep you safe. If you find yourself the victim of an eighteen wheeler accident, or if you have a loved one who is, reach out to Mark’s Law Group for support and a path forward. We will work to determine whether you or your loved one is entitled to compensation, and if that is the case, we will fight for you all the way.

Stay safe and remember to do your part to help avoid eighteen wheeler fatalities. 

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