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Garbage Truck Crash that Caused 12 Injuries was the Result of Brake Failure

children's toy green garbage truck

A Union City crash that caused a dozen injuries and resulted in an hours-long traffic jam was the result of brake failure of the truck that caused these injuries, according to the truck’s driver. Learn more about the crash and potential liability for these injuries below, and contact an experienced New Jersey truck accident lawyer if you’ve been hurt in a crash.

Crash at exit of Lincoln Tunnel causes massive gridlock

On July 3, 2019, the driver of a Union City Department of Public Works truck was traveling on 30th Street at around 1:00 pm when it began to speed down the street. The truck collided with three cars as it sped down 30th. It then crashed through a fence, careened off the overpass, collided with a BoltBus, and came to rest upside-down and nose-first in the westbound lanes of Route 495. Witnesses to the accident reported seeing the truck travel at increasing speed while the driver stood in the cab of the trash truck, waving his hands frantically and shouting for other drivers to get out of the way.

The truck remained in the lanes of traffic for several hours, badly snarling traffic heading out of New York and into New Jersey on the eve of July 4th. Local news outlets reported that cars attempting to pass through the Lincoln Tunnel were backed up as far back as Times Square, trapped in gridlock for several hours. Ultimately, the twelve people who were injured in collisions with the truck, including the truck driver, were in stable condition by the evening of the crash.

The Department of Public Works employee who was driving the truck when it crashed spoke with local news outlets after being released from the hospital. He said that the collisions were the result of the failure of the vehicle’s brakes. He explained that he was standing in the vehicle in an effort to depress the brake pedal as much as possible. Eventually, he resorted to finding the softest spot he could to crash into in an effort to prevent as many injuries as possible. The driver suffered a broken arm, lacerations to his head, and several broken ribs.

Cities are liable for maintaining their trucks and buses

Cities and government agencies have a legal responsibility to keep machinery and official vehicles in safe working order through regular inspection and maintenance. This is both for the safety of their employees and for the safety of the general public. Should those charged with maintaining these vehicles fail to do so, they may face liability for resulting injuries. In some cases, liability may fall on the manufacturer of defective brake pads for negligently selling an unsafe product. In other cases, the mechanic who performed maintenance on the vehicle may bear responsibility after failing to perform necessary repairs with the necessary attention and care. After an accident, an experienced personal injury attorney can help victims uncover the causes of a crash with a thorough, factual investigation and analysis of the evidence. This will help to determine potentially-liable parties for the injuries and expenses stemming from the crash.

If you need help pursuing a claim for money damages after a New Jersey truck accident, contact the seasoned and effective personal injury attorney Andrew R. Jacobs for a free consultation at 973-532-9681.

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