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Tractor Trailer Crash At Intersection Of Fulton Industrial Road And Tradewater Parkway: A Lawyer Discusses Potential Legal Issues.

  • News Report on Tractor-Trailer Crash at the Intersection of Fulton Industrial Road and Tradewater Parkway

According to news reports in the AJC and WSB-TV, a tractor-trailer accident ended in tragedy on March 19, 2019 when Dwayne Burkholder died. The accident occurred at the intersection of Fulton Industrial Road and Tradewater Parker. The tractor-trailer driver was allegedly traveling on Tradewater Parkway and attempting to turn onto Fulton Industrial Boulevard. According to the AJC, the tractor-trailer driver purportedly became stuck blocking the entire roadway. Mr. Burkholder was reportedly traveling on Fulton Industrial Road and struck the tractor-trailer. Mr. Burkholder tragically passed away.

Citizens of that community say that this intersection purportedly causes frequent accidents and must be changed. As it stands now, there is reportedly no traffic signal for the intersection.

  • Overview of law.

Georgia law applies to traffic accidents in the state. In addition, when an accident involves a tractor-trailer, the tractor-trailer is subject to the Regulations of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. These regulations govern things like how many hours the driver is permitted to drive in a day and week. They also regulate the tractor trailer itself including, for example, regulations related to inspection.

Georgia has a number of traffic laws that could apply here. Accordingly to the AJC, the tractor-trailer driver has allegedly been charged with failure to yield and obstruction of an intersection, among other charges. O.C.G.A. § 40-6-205 governs obstruction of an intersection. It reads:

No driver shall enter an intersection unless there is sufficient space on the other side of the intersection to accommodate the vehicle he is operating without obstructing the passage of other vehicles or pedestrians, notwithstanding any traffic-control signal indication to proceed

In addition, there may be a claim against the Georgia Department of Transportation (“GDOT”) from the alleged faulty intersection. Under the Georgia Tort Claims Act, GDOT may be liable for negligent design of an intersection if it failed to meet engineering standards at the time the intersection was constructed. Lennen v. DOT, 239 Ga. App. 729 (1999). This includes the decision whether or not to include a traffic light. Whether an intersection is negligently designed involves complex engineering questions and requires an expert.

If a lawsuit is asserted under a case like this one, it will most likely include a claim for wrongful death and pain and suffering. A claim for wrongful death, under Georgia, includes damages for the full value of the loss of the life of the deceased, without deduction for damages for the pain and suffering of the deceased after the injury and prior to death. O.C.G.A. § 51-4-1. In addition, under Georgia law, the Estate of a deceased person may recover for medical, funeral, and other expenses, as well as conscious pain and suffering proximately caused by the defendant. O.C.G.A. § 51-4-5.

It is, of course, impossible to tell from a news report whether or not a defense to liability, would apply. In order to determine this, an experienced attorney in this area of law would need to review the case.

  • What is this blog?

At Carr & Weatherby, we specialize in tractor trailer accidents. We have recovered millions of dollars for injured parties in 2018 alone, including a verdict in excess of $27,000,000 for a wrongful death case. We also defend tractor trailer companies in serious accidents. By practicing on both sides of the aisle, we keep our skills sharp to best help our clients. Contact us for a free consultation at 404-442-9000 or info@wpcarr.com.

Our hope is to inform people about legal issues through this blog. If you have any questions about this blog, please contact us at 404-442-9000 or info@wpcarr.com.