It is not unusual to read about an accident that was caused by someone driving at too high a rate of speed. What is not as common is an accident that happens because someone is not driving fast enough. A man who was driving a semi truck that allegedly caused a fatal accident in Ohio by going too slowly now faces charges for his presumed role in the incident. He could potentially face wrongful death and personal injury lawsuits as well.
The bus, which was transporting 50 people, collided with the back of a semi truck that was apparently traveling very slowly. Forty of the bus passengers suffered injuries. One woman was killed.
The man driving the semi truck is facing multiple motor vehicle charges associated with the accident. One charge alleges that he drove so slowly that it adversely affected traffic. He is also charged with driving with unsafe brakes and too high a weight load. Officials say his actions did not, however, merit a criminal charge for vehicular homicide.
Officials say the bus driver did nothing wrong. They say she was going the speed limit when she encountered the slow-moving truck. A separate investigation of the incident is being conducted by a national safety organization with the transportation industry. Its results were not available at the time of this report.
If convicted of the motor vehicle charges, the driver of the semi faces fines of nearly $5,000. If he chooses to dispute the charges, he may request a hearing in an Ohio courtroom to do so. Regardless, the family of the decedent may elect to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the truck driver and potentially his employer. The many people injured retain the right to file personal injury lawsuits as well. If the trucker is found guilty of one or more of the motor vehicle charges, proof of that may be offered as evidence of liability for negligence in a related civil proceeding.
Source: The Patriot-News, Rig driver charged in fatal I-80 Greyhound bus crash in Union County, John Beauge, March 7, 2014