Archives for : November2013

Company Under Investigation For Truckers’ Hours

Truck drivers are required to follow strict federal guidelines regarding how long they can be behind the wheel of a big rig. The regulations are in place to help prevent atruck accident. Accidents involving trucks and passenger vehicles can have disastrous results, so when a trucking company is found to be in violation of the federal guidelines, it is a serious offense. Santa Rosa residents might be interested to learn that a company in the state has been found to be in violation of these laws.

The guidelines states that a truck driver cannot be behind the wheel of a tractor trailer for more than one 16-hour shift a week. However, Sysco San Francisco’s drivers routinely go over that amount. Upon inspection of the digital log books, it was revealed that from April to October of this year, the company violated the 16-hour shift policy every month. In August there was a large spike — from one violation in July to 98 in August — but for most months they were still in violation.

This has several agencies dismayed. The California Highway patrol states that having drivers on the road for that long a stretch increases the chances of a fatal accident occurring. A Sysco San Francisco driver was involved in a serious collision recently, when one of their trucks slammed into the back of a vehicle sitting on the side of the road waiting for a tow truck. The CHP fears that if Sysco is allowed to continue this practice, it will lead to more, and worse accidents.

Part of the reason Sysco has been able to get away with this many driving violations is that the CHP has to count on routine stops or checkins at weigh stations to find out how long a driver had been out on the road. There are inspections of driving records completed by the Department of Transportation, but they are usually done only once every two years.

It is apparent that Sysco San Francisco is creating a dangerous situation for those who share the road with their truck. Anyone who is injured due to an accident with any vehicle is well within their rights to seek compensation for their injuries and material losses. A legal professional with experience in this area could help someone who wanted to take this approach for compensation.

Source: NBC Bay Area, “Sysco Foods Records Reveal Drivers’ Hours Exceeding Federal Limits, Putting Public Safety at Risk” Vicky Nguyen, Felipe Escamilla and Kevin Nious, Nov. 29, 2013

Collision Between Bus, Several Cars Snarl Traffic

Whenever vehicles of a variety of sizes occupy the same space on a highway, an accident could occur. It only takes one inattentive driver or one mechanical malfunction to cause a car crash that can lead to injuries and traffic tie-ups. A recent accident on a local highway managed to do just that.

An accident on Highway 101 backed up traffic for over an hour on Nov. 14. An airport shuttle collided with several cars. The cause of the accident is currently unknown but under investigation. The accident occurred around 5 p.m. and was cleared just before 6:30 p.m.

Several ambulances transported those who were injured to local hospitals. The conditions of the victims are unknown, but according to authorities, none of the injuries seemed life-threatening. The driver of the bus and the bus’s four passengers were uninjured in the accident.

In cases where multiple vehicles are involved, an accident reconstruction might be performed in order to determine how the accident happened. All of the vehicles involved in the crash will be thoroughly inspected to see if a malfunction in one of the vehicles might have been the cause. Also everyone who was involved in the accident will be interviewed, as will any witnesses to the accident that come forward. Once investigators are confident in their conclusion regarding how the accident happened, any citation or charges that need to be brought will be done so.

Those who were injured and suffered material losses have a right to seek compensation for their injuries and losses, which makes determining the cause and anyone who might be at fault that much more important. Anyone who might be considering seeking damages would be wise to speak to a legal professional experienced in this area. These individuals can help accident victims determine the best course of action to receive compensation for their losses.

Source: The Press Democrat, “Crash involving bus snarls Highway 101 commute traffic” Jeremy Hay, Nov. 14, 2013

4-car Wreck Caused By DUI Driver

People who drive while under the influence of alcohol or other substances have been proven to have slower reflexes and have difficulty maintaining control of their vehicles. This is why driving while under the influence is not just frowned upon, it’s illegal in Santa Rosa and around the country. A woman is facing charges for DUI after a car crash she allegedly caused resulted in several damaged vehicles.

On Oct. 23, a woman driving a 2004 Dodge pickup on Highway 90, not far from Parkmore Plaza Drive in Milton, failed to stop and collided with a 2005 Dodge pickup that was stopped in traffic. The collision caused the 2005 Dodge to hit two other cars.

Local ambulances, Milton Fire and Milton Police all responded to the scene of the accident. It was not reported whether there were any injuries, but it was reported that two of the vehicles were stuck together and had to be pulled apart. The separation of the vehicles, as well as the clean-up of the accident scene resulted in traffic backups.

The woman who was driving the 2004 Dodge that caused the initial accident was charged with driving under the influence. It is unknown whether there are additional charges pending.

The drivers whose cars damaged in the chain-reaction accident could be entitled to compensation from the woman who caused the initial accident, or from the truck that actually hit them, depending on the circumstances. The driver of the truck that was hit initially could also pursue the woman who was driving the truck that struck it. In a chain reaction accident, it can be difficult to determine who was at fault, or if there needs to be some sort of shared blame, so speaking with a legal professional can help a person involved in such as incident determine exactly what right to compensation exists in the particular situation.

Santa Rosa’s Press Gazette, “GALLERY: Milton police say DUI caused 4-car wreck on Hwy 90” Jason Jandura, Oct. 29, 2013

Reportedly Intoxicated Driver Fails To Yield To Motorcycle Rider

A California woman was charged with gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated concerning an incident back in December that took the life of a motorcycle rider. A 58-year-old motorcycle rider was reportedly riding his motorcycle across an intersection at the time of the accident. The female driver in a 2007 Matrix then apparently turned left into the intersection directly in front of the motorcycle and the motorcycle collided with the vehicle.

According to California Highway Patrol officials, the motorcycle rider was taken to the hospital after suffering major injuries during the crash. The driver was also allegedly intoxicated at the time that the accident occurred.

Without question, we hear too many stories of drivers behaving in a certain manner that places motorcycle riders at risk when on the road. Unfortunately, drivers do sometimes operate their vehicles while under the influence of alcohol or drugs and this leads to clouded perception. Also, we hear about many motorcycle accidents occurring where for some reason the driver of a vehicle failed to yield the right of way.

Drivers often fail to acknowledge that motorcycle riders have the same rights on the road as every other motor vehicle operator. Sadly, the consequences of a typical motorcycle accident are generally severe.

Experienced personal injury attorneys are accustomed to assisting individuals that are badly in need of assistance. Victims of such accidents also are often caretakers or providers for others. Attorneys can assist individuals in being reimbursed for medical expenses, wage losses, pain and suffering and other expenses. In cases like the one mentioned above, personal injury attorneys can also assist family members of victims to make certain that their loss is not further complicated by financial problems as well.

KHTS, “Fatal DUI Crash Suspect From Stevenson Ranch Due Back In Court,” Perry Smith, Oct. 7, 2013