Dump Truck Driver Facing Criminal Charges for Causing Fatal Accident
Daniel Everett, a 39-year-old truck driver, has been indicted for his role in the July 17 death of Trenton resident James McLean. Everett was driving an 80,000-pound dump truck erratically when he hit McLean’s passenger vehicle from behind, pushing the car off Route 1 in Lawrenceville. The car traveled over 200 feet into Colonial Lake, where McLean died. Everett has been indicted by a grand jury on one count of recklessly causing the death of Mr. McLean. Everett is free on $100,000 bail and faces a maximum of ten years in state prison, if convicted.
The accident was, in fact, Everett’s third accident that day. Earlier that morning, Everett had rear-ended a car stopped at a red light. Several hours later, Everett collided with a different car, pushing it into a third car. Finally, after driving away from the three-car crash, Everett ran over a residential lawn, damaging the property.
Prior to the events of July 17, Everett had recently been diagnosed with diabetes. His attorney stated on his behalf in court that his blood sugar had been highly erratic that day, which caused his reckless driving, and that as a result of his fluctuating blood sugar, Everett could not remember what had happened the day before. Everett’s diabetes may not be a defense to his ultimately-lethal driving, however, either for purposes of a criminal conviction or should the McLean estate sue Everett for McLean’s wrongful death. If an individual causes an accident when he experiences a health emergency, the court will look to whether the individual had notice of the condition. If the person was aware of a health condition that could make him unsafe on the roads, but he took no precautions to ensure that he was safe to drive (such as taking any prescribed medications prior to driving), then the court may find that the driver was as responsible as a healthy individual for causing the accident, and may even consider it reckless for the individual to fail to heed warnings from doctors about the condition’s impact on his ability to drive safely.
If you’ve been injured in an accident with a large truck or tractor trailer, make sure that you’re compensated for your medical expenses, lost wages and other past and future economic losses, pain and suffering, and loss of quality of life. Contact personal injury attorney Andrew R. Jacobs for experienced, compassionate legal assistance. Call 973-532-9681 for a free consultation on your New Jersey or New York truck accident claim.