A terrible tractor-trailer accident happened in Forsyth County, North Carolina, on the afternoon of October 30, 2014, claiming three lives and causing several other injuries. One of those killed in the crash was only nine years old. According to news reports, the wreck happened on U.S. 52 near Tobaccoville in a construction zone. Two lanes of traffic were attempting to merge down into a single lane, causing a line of vehicles to be stopped on the road.
Recently, the driver of the truck that allegedly caused the crash appeared in court to enter a plea of guilty to criminal charges lodged by the State of North Carolina following the accident.
Trucker Pleads Guilty to Criminal Charges
After the accident, the driver of the truck that rear-ended the car at the back of the line, causing a chain of other collisions, was reportedly charged with three counts of involuntary manslaughter. Under North Carolina law, involuntary manslaughter is considered a homicide offense and is punishable as a Class F felony. (Generally, the offense of involuntary manslaughter occurs when one person’s actions unintentionally result in the death of another person, and the offender’s conduct was reckless or criminally negligent. Defenses to a charge of involuntary manslaughter include self-defense and genuine accident.)
The truck driver allegedly responsible for the multiple fatality accident in Forsyth County has reportedly entered a guilty plea on all three charges. According to news reports, he was sentenced to 60 days of actual incarceration and 200 hours of community service, with the rest of his sentence suspended.
Factors that May Have Affected the Outcome of the Case
There was apparently no indication that the trucker was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the accident, nor did cell phone usage or texting seem to be a factor. However, a big truck is a very dangerous instrumentality, and there are many ways that a truck driver can act negligently, causing serious injuries or death to those in smaller, more vulnerable vehicles.
The news report indicated that, although the trucker had almost 12 seconds to take action to prevent the collision, another trucker said his brake lights didn’t come on until after the wreck. In response to a question about what may have been distracting him at the time of the crash, the truck driver was quoted as saying, “I looked around and look down. It was too late.”
The truck was reportedly hauling 80,000 pounds of sand at the time of the wreck, and the truck driver was apparently aware of the road work in the area because he had traveled the same route earlier in the day.
Talk to an Experienced North Carolina Truck Accident Attorney
Even when a negligent truck driver is found guilty of a criminal offense, this does not automatically result in the payment of a settlement to the victim or his or her family. If you or someone in your family has been involved in a truck accident, you should talk to an attorney about seeking fair compensation for your injuries or your loved one’s wrongful death. A knowledgeable North Carolina truck accident lawyer at Nagle & Associates can offer a free, confidential case evaluation. To schedule yours, contact us at (800) 411-1583. We serve clients throughout the state of North Carolina, including in Raleigh, Charlotte, Greensboro, Durham, Winston-Salem, Fayetteville, Cary, Wilmington, High Point, and Asheville.
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