Commercial Vehicle Wreck-18 Wheeler-Negligence-Personal Injury-Lower Back Surgery
We successfully negotiated a $1,100,000.00 settlement for our client who was involved in an incident where a board flew off a manufactured home being transported by GKD Management, LP d/b/a A&G Commercial Trucking (“GKD”) and crashed through the windshield of our client causing him to leave the roadway and violently bounce through rough terrain causing injuries to his neck and back. Neither the owner of GKD nor GKD’s driver of the tractor were familiar with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulation (“FMCSR”) relating to the securement of cargo. Additionally, the driver had not been provided any training by GKD concerning the proper manner in which to secure cargo being hauled across interstate highways as required by the applicable FMCSR. Further, the driver was clearly off the route planned by the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles, which off route transport would have resulted in a criminal charge against the driver and GDK if reported to the DMV. Thus, Plaintiff asserted this was the reason the wreck was not reported by the driver or GKD to the proper law enforcement authorities. GKD also had a contractual responsibility to inspect the cargo prior to beginning transport to ensure that the cargo was properly secured for transport across interstate highways. This inspection did not occur. The driver also testified that he texted and drove while hauling cargo despite a documented GKD policy that prohibited drivers from texting and driving. The driver also testified that he routinely used his cell phone while driving and GKD’s president testified the use of a cell phone by drivers was prohibited while the driver is transporting cargo. The driver’s cell phone records reflected that he was constantly talking on his cell phone during the entire period he was transporting the cargo, including making numerous calls in the two hours leading up to the crash. Our client sustained significant injuries, including herniated discs in both his neck and lower back. At the time the case settled, our client had undergone one lower back surgery and his treating surgeon testified that two-three additional surgeries would be medically necessary to treat his injuries during his lifetime. After payment of attorney’s fees ($440,000.00), expenses ($86,710.90) and medical bills our client netted more than $464,000.00.