Semi Driver Failed to Slow Down Upon Approaching Stalled SUVs
A mother and her three children were killed in a firey tractor-trailer crash in Jacksonville, Florida on Monday. The Arkansas family was travelling southbound on I-295 and as they crossed over the Buckman Bridge, their Chevrolet Tahoe stalled. A Nissan Murano stopped behind the Tahoe SUV. The tractor-trailer then slammed into the Murano SUV, causing a chain reaction in which the Murano hit the Tahoe and the Tahoe was rammed into a concrete barrier. The Tahoe burst into flames with 36 year-old Yakel Culclager and her children 18 year-old Trequis Woods-Sims, 17 year-old Tradesia Woods-Sims, and six year-old Trevieon Woods-Franklin trapped inside.
Police say that the driver did not test positive for intoxication but they are investigating why the driver did not slow down when he approached the stalled vehicle. Traffic was halted for more than five hours while law enforcement investigated the horrific crash.
Semi Company Had History of Violations
Sunteck Transport Group employs the driver involved in Monday’s fatal tractor-trailer accident. The U.S. Department of Transportation has cited Sunteck Transport Group drivers 50 times during the past two years for violating hours of service regulations and record-keeping requirements. Hours of Service laws restrict the number of hours a driver can work in a workweek and a shift and mandates rest periods and time off between shifts. Drivers are required to keep accurate logs so that inspectors can determine whether they are obeying the hours of service rules. In five cases, Sunteck Transport Group kept their drivers on the road beyond the 14-hour duty period, which is the maximum allowable drive time before a rest break is required. In three cases, the drivers falsified records.
Law enforcement has not cited the semi driver or the trucking corporation and will look into whether sleep-deprivation played a part in the accident as well as other potential causes.
1200 Accidents on Buckman Bridge in Past Three Years
In addition to reviewing the driver’s and the corporation’s liability, Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) investigators are investigating why so many wrecks have occurred on this bridge. The FDOT reports that approximately 1200 accidents have occurred on the Buckman Bridge in the past three years, several resulting in deaths and serious injuries.
Berenson Law Firm considers the liability of all responsible parties when investigating a tractor-trailer accident other than the obvious driver error. Call our auto accident injury lawyer toll-free at 888-801-8585 or locally at 817-885-8000 to schedule a free consultation to discuss recovery for your crash.