We mentioned a terrible accident involving a gravel truck and several other vehicles in our prior blog last week. More has since been revealed about the violent accident in West Austin.
A video from a dash cam went viral showing several cars stopped at an intersection on RM 2222 and Jester Boulevard. Moments later, a hot-red dump truck bashes into five cars across the intersection before careening over the edge of a bridge and crashing below. No one died in the accident, but four were injured. One of those who were injured sustained life-altering injuries and is seeking justice.
Crash Victim Sues Driver and Trucking Company
The 19-year-old student was traveling east on 2222 when the accident occurred. She was in the second car the gravel truck hit on its way towards toppling over the bridge and her car was T-boned. Pictures of the accident reveal her car was completely mangled and hardly recognizable. She is left with a permanent spinal cord injury.
According to the report, the gravel truck actually pulled over before approaching the hill on Jester Boulevard because the vehicle began bouncing unnaturally. However, the driver chose to continue. That’s when the brakes failed as the driver traveled down the hill, gaining momentum. The brake failure was blamed as the cause of this particularly bad multi-car crash.
However, the student claims the driver should not have been allowed to drive the truck in the first place. She is suing the trucking company for negligence, as the driver was a “twice-convicted felon.” According to state records, one of those felonies is for driving under the influence in addition to several other driving-related charges. Moreover, the trucking company has a record of more than 20 violations in the past two years, some of which were considered acute-critical safety violations. In just 2015, an inspection report shows the same exact violations on the truck in just two months, showing the company did not prioritize safety standards before putting the truck on the road. The student also alleges the driver was not properly trained on operating the commercial vehicle.
Commercial Truck Companies Must Be Diligent About Driver History and Safety Training
Given these trucks are going to be driven around local communities, commercial truck companies must be more diligent in knowing who is operating the vehicles, their driver history and ensure all drivers receive proper safety training. A simple background check would have prevented the gravel truck accident on 2222. Or, had the driver been properly trained, he would have recognized the unnatural bouncing as a red flag to stay pulled over and wait for assistance or to be towed. Had both a background check and proper safety training occurred, a young woman’s spine might still be intact.