Are Authorities Held Responsible If Improper Maintenance Of Roadside Greenery Contributes To An Accident?

Topic 32339 | Page 1

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Truck D.'s Comment
member avatar

I am interested to know your opinion whether the authorities of a small Township are using the extortion and predatory tactics in this accident situation, furthermore if they can be held responsible to any extent. The road where the accident happened might not have a proper signage (such as for a 2-lane road that turned into a 1-lane road). The roadside greenery was not well maintained, it blocked the visibility which played some part in the accident. As it can be seen on Google Maps image, the impact point is completely obscured by tree branches and tall grass.

I was driving a semi-truck at around 1am on a foggy dark night on a curvy road with no street lights. While I was about to cross the platform over a stream, the front right tire hit the right-side wall hidden by tall grass and tree branches. The wall was about 2 ft high made from stone blocks, upon impact it fell on its side. The remaining part of the wall made from what looks like cement stayed intact. The truck remained on the road.

The tow truck driver who gave me a ride said the authorities over there could try to use this as a mean to get money out of me to completely rebuild the bridge they were looking funding for some time. By coincidence or not, the company I work for was told it would need to finance the replacement of the entire crossing/bridge.

There was no structural damage to the bridge platform, 2ft heigh/25ft long section of the stone wall that fell on its side and laid on the ground was not supporting the bridge in any way, the platform was not damaged. The stone wall was simply put on top of the platform. There does not seem to be a reason why the entire bridge would need to be replaced and financed by the company I work for when it did not sustain structural damage.

Upon the tire hitting the wall, it partially displaced the right-side 140 gallon fuel tank which then leaked diesel. There was hazmat team from the Fire Department involved. The tow company does not want to release the trailer with the load that needs to be delivered until the bills come from all sides and are being paid (probably bills from the country, fire department, police, on top of the expenses they are asking for like to finance the rebuild of the entire bridge).

It seems the small company I work for became a clay duck for the authorities from that small Township to write themselves blank checks and request them to be paid. This kind of financial burden is enough to make the trucking company bankrupt and leave employees without work. I wrote to several law offices without gaining their interest.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

Moe's Comment
member avatar

We mainly help new drivers or folks interested in gettigg by a CDL here or offer encouragement to new/existing member.

Something like this is def the purview of a legal professional I’d say, not much help to be found here

I am interested to know your opinion whether the authorities of a small Township are using the extortion and predatory tactics in this accident situation, furthermore if they can be held responsible to any extent. The road where the accident happened might not have a proper signage (such as for a 2-lane road that turned into a 1-lane road). The roadside greenery was not well maintained, it blocked the visibility which played some part in the accident. As it can be seen on Google Maps image, the impact point is completely obscured by tree branches and tall grass.

I was driving a semi-truck at around 1am on a foggy dark night on a curvy road with no street lights. While I was about to cross the platform over a stream, the front right tire hit the right-side wall hidden by tall grass and tree branches. The wall was about 2 ft high made from stone blocks, upon impact it fell on its side. The remaining part of the wall made from what looks like cement stayed intact. The truck remained on the road.

The tow truck driver who gave me a ride said the authorities over there could try to use this as a mean to get money out of me to completely rebuild the bridge they were looking funding for some time. By coincidence or not, the company I work for was told it would need to finance the replacement of the entire crossing/bridge.

There was no structural damage to the bridge platform, 2ft heigh/25ft long section of the stone wall that fell on its side and laid on the ground was not supporting the bridge in any way, the platform was not damaged. The stone wall was simply put on top of the platform. There does not seem to be a reason why the entire bridge would need to be replaced and financed by the company I work for when it did not sustain structural damage.

Upon the tire hitting the wall, it partially displaced the right-side 140 gallon fuel tank which then leaked diesel. There was hazmat team from the Fire Department involved. The tow company does not want to release the trailer with the load that needs to be delivered until the bills come from all sides and are being paid (probably bills from the country, fire department, police, on top of the expenses they are asking for like to finance the rebuild of the entire bridge).

It seems the small company I work for became a clay duck for the authorities from that small Township to write themselves blank checks and request them to be paid. This kind of financial burden is enough to make the trucking company bankrupt and leave employees without work. I wrote to several law offices without gaining their interest.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

Stevo Reno's Comment
member avatar

Sounds to me like your company needs to have this spot inspected by an outside source knowing engineering. Sounds like this township was looking for a sucker, and you just happened to come along and smack their bridge issues. The tow company shouldn't really be worrying about that part, as long as they get paid for the tow etc let the township deal with it. Basicly, mind their own damn business, unless they too are looking for more compensation they should get......GREED is always the root of lots of things in our world lol

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Harvey C.'s Comment
member avatar

What is typical for something such as this is your employer's insurance company would immediately get their in-house counsel involved. It's not something for an employee to get involved in trying to deal with or arranging for counsel for your employer. If this is a small town, they probably have very limited legal expertise in-house and the insurance company should be able to clear things up quickly. If they had proper insurance coverage, the company's liability should be limited. Large trucking companies often self-insure for most legal problems with coverage for catastrophic events that would cause them significant financial problems. I can't imagine any small companies trying something like this.

Turtle's Comment
member avatar

Let's break this down to elemental basics.

I was driving a semi-truck at around 1am on a foggy dark night on a curvy road with no street lights.

So all the "signs" were there telling you to use extra caution, due to conditions.

the impact point is completely obscured by tree branches and tall grass.

So what made you drive into the tree branches and tall grass?

BK's Comment
member avatar

Let's break this down to elemental basics.

double-quotes-start.png

I was driving a semi-truck at around 1am on a foggy dark night on a curvy road with no street lights.

double-quotes-end.png

So all the "signs" were there telling you to use extra caution, due to conditions.

double-quotes-start.png

the impact point is completely obscured by tree branches and tall grass.

double-quotes-end.png

So what made you drive into the tree branches and tall grass?

What and to where were you delivering? Why did you go down a one lane road at night? In the fog? Was there a weight limit sign preceding the bridge itself? We’re you lost and/or out of route? Me thinks there is more to this story than what you have stated. I don’t understand why you were even on that road to begin with. Can you elaborate?

PackRat's Comment
member avatar

What is the address or maybe it would help us to see screen shots of the Google Street View.

This will be one for the carrier's insurance company, the municipality, etc. Lots of affected parties will be mixed into this soup. As for yourself, it should be a "Preventable Accident" at a minimum because this was avoidable. I do not think a town decided to let the vegetation grow with a plan to purposely obscure infrastructure in order for a trucking company to fund a future road improvement project. How many drivers did not make contact on other dark, foggy nights while traveling this same route? This is all on you, not the municipality or anyone else. You were behind the wheel, so own up to your error without trying the Blame Game of being the victim.

How much truck driving experience do you have? Whenever I encounter some bad spot as you described, I put on the 4 ways, stop, and check out the area on foot.

RealDiehl's Comment
member avatar

Let's break this down to elemental basics.

double-quotes-start.png

I was driving a semi-truck at around 1am on a foggy dark night on a curvy road with no street lights.

double-quotes-end.png

So all the "signs" were there telling you to use extra caution, due to conditions.

double-quotes-start.png

the impact point is completely obscured by tree branches and tall grass.

double-quotes-end.png

So what made you drive into the tree branches and tall grass?

Forget about Ginsu...Turtle wields the sharpest knife in the drawer and he uses it like a pro. It cuts cleanly through BS and never needs to be resharpened.

Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

Were you driving too fast that you were unable to see the sign? From what I'm gathering the sign that should be posted is "narrow bridge". Where is this bridge located?

Either way you hit the bridge. How can you say if there was structural damage? Is the bridge currently closed to all vehicles? Regardless, if you're a company driver and reported it you've done your job. If you're a lease op let your insurance company handle it.

If your carrier doesn't have sufficient insurance that's not your problem.

PJ's Comment
member avatar

I’ve read through this post a couple times trying to figure out if it is real or not. The opening statement is one that people often use as deflection from their own mistakes or to prompt interest in the writing.

A pretty far out there thought process that this was a setup by a township.

IF it happened then it’s on the driver. Several good points already made toward this conclusion.

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