Truck Accident Information

A commercial truck accident is usually much more catastrophic than a car accident due to the large weight disparity. Most big truck accidents result in serious and fatal injuries. In addition, truck accidents can be made worse by the freight the truck is carrying, especially if hazardous or flammable materials are being hauled. Due to the hazardous material, secondary injuries from dangerous cargo may result. One of the most important pieces of evidence in a truck accident is the black box data. The black box, also known as electronic control module or electronic data recorder, tracks important information such as hours on the road, speed, seat belt use, tire pressure, sudden braking, and other factors. If the black box data shows a truck driver was acting recklessly or violating the law, this information could be used as evidence to support an injury claim. In addition, truc...

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Can You Still Make a Claim After Signing a Liability Release Waiver?

Recently, a state appellate court issued an opinion in a Florida personal injury case involving an accident that occurred on the Daytona International Speedway. The case required the court to determine whether the plaintiff was prevented from pursuing a claim against the Speedway based on a release of liability waiver she had signed before the accident. Ultimately, the court concluded that although the waiver was valid and enforceable, it did not cover the specific claim made by the plaintiff. The Facts of the Case The court’s recitation of the facts was brief; however, it appeared from the court’s discussion of the facts that the plaintiff was a pit-crew member for one of the racers. Before the plaintiff was allowed onto the racetr...

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The Florida Rules of Evidence Play a Major Role in All Personal Injury Accidents

The judge plays an extremely important role in any Florida personal injury case. Among the major duties of the judge during a trial is to make all evidentiary rulings. These may come up in a pre-trial motion in limine or throughout trial when a party attempts to elicit or present certain evidence that the opposing party believes is objectionable and should be excluded. Florida judges are guided in these decisions by the Florida Rules of Evidence, which are quite complex and cover many of the situations that may come up during a trial. Perhaps the most basic rule is stated in Rule 90.402, which explains that “all relevant evidence is admissible, except as provided by law.” Thus, the party attempting to admit evidence must first establish that it is relevant...

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What Can Be Done to Prevent Florida Semi-Truck Underride Accidents

Semi-trucks are among the largest, most dangerous vehicles on the road, and as a result are involved in more than their share of Florida automobile accidents. Indeed, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration reported that in 2016 there were 293 fatal Florida semi-truck accidents. Also concerning is the fact that as a percentage of the total number of accidents, Florida semi-truck crashes continue to rise. One type of semi-truck accident that has been getting significant attention over the past few years is an underride accident. An underride accident occurs when another vehicle gets wedged underneath a semi-truck during a collision. This normally occurs when a motorist rear-ends a stopped or...

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South Florida Accident Involving Dump Truck Claims Two Lives

Earlier this month, a Florida auto accident between a car and a dump truck claimed the life of a mother and her eight-year-old daughter. According to a local news report, the accident occurred on John Young Parkway at around 3:50 in the morning. Evidently, the mother was traveling northbound on the Parkway when she entered the right-turn lane. However, as she did so, she ran into the rear of a dump truck carrying a load of asphalt that had been parked on the road shoulder but was partially extending into the lane of traffic. No one was in the truck at the time, and it has not yet been determined why the vehicle was left partially obscuring a lane of traffic. Tragically, the young mother was pronounced dead at the scene ...

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Filing a South Florida Truck Accident Case

The highways of South Florida see a large number of commercial trucks every day. As a result, it isn’t surprising to learn that there are a significant number of truck accidents across the state. Indeed, according to a recent government study, there were nearly 300 fatal Florida truck accidents in 2016 alone. Miami-Dade and Broward Counties see the highest number of fatal Florida traffic accidents each year. Due to the dangers presented by large trucks, Florida truck drivers are required to obtain a special license prior to operating a large truck. In order to obtain a commercial driver’s license, an aspiring truck driver must pass several written tests, as well as a pre-trip inspection test and a road test. In addition, truck drivers who plan on carrying hazardous materials, school children,...

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Florida Crash Highlights Lack of Enforcement of Agricultural Transportation Laws

Every person on the road has to be wary of other drivers, especially those drivers who are fatigued and may not be safely operating a vehicle. A recent news article highlights the dangers associated with the transportation of agricultural workers, a danger all Florida drivers face. In a Florida auto accident involving a truck and a bus, four people were killed in an early morning collision near St. Marks. According to federal investigators, the crash highlighted problems with safety regulations concerning the transportation of migrant farmworkers. The crash occurred at around 5:00 AM and was deemed to be the fault of the bus driver. The bus was being driven by a migrant farmworker who had finished a day's work picking crops. Investigators...

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Legal Issues Involving the Use of Self-Driving Cars in Florida

Last year, a Tesla car equipped with auto-pilot technology was involved in a fatal accident with a semi-truck. According to news reports released shortly after the accident, the car was traveling straight on the highway when a semi-truck pulled out in front of the car. Both the driver of the vehicle as well as the vehicle’s auto-pilot system failed to detect the bright-white side of the semi-truck, and the car collided with the side of the truck at full speed. In the wake of the accident, many questions arose not just about the safety of self-driving cars but also regarding the many legal issues that the use of self-driving cars brings up. For example, when a person is operating a self-driving car in auto-pilot mode and a collision occurs, is the manufacturer liable for any injuries to a third party? What about the “driver” of the self-driving car? These questions are no closer ...

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Attorneys at Cecere Santana Share Driving Tips for Teens to Prevent Fatal Accidents

According to an October 12, 2016 CBS News article, the number of teenagers involved in deadly car crashes is rising for the first time in nearly a decade. In 2015, there was a 10-percent increase in teen driving deaths. “In fact, teenage drivers are more than one-and-a-half times more likely than adults to be involved in a deadly crash,” said personal injury attorney Erick Santana, a founding partner at Cecere Santana. To help prevent fatal accidents involving teens, Santana and Cecere Santana co-founder Michael Cecere share the following three tips: No. 1: Always wear your seat belt. “Of the teens who died in passenger vehicle crashes, approximately 55% were not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash,” said Cecere. “Research shows that seat belts reduce serious crash-related injuries and deaths by about half.” No. 2: Practice driving with yo...

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Plaintiff Loses Argument Regarding Whether Insurance Coverage Was “Per Vehicle” or “Per Accident”

Insurance contracts can be confusing. Often, the party purchasing the insurance only reads the “declarations” page, which is only a very brief overview of what their coverage entails. However, the actual insurance contract itself is often much longer and much more complicated, and it may even contain seemingly contradictory clauses. When an insurance contract contains a clause that seems contradictory, the court system often must step in to resolve the conflict if the insured and the insurance company cannot agree. In most cases, if the court determines that there are contradictory terms, the conflict will be resolved in favor of the insured. However, the plaintiff does have the initial burden to prove that a contradiction exists. If no contradiction exists, the court will likely interpret the contract as it was written, even if this seems unfair because the insured thought that th...

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