A North Carolina tractor-trailer driver is facing criminal charges stemming from a fatal bicycle crash in Wilmington, North Carolina on May 15.
Wilmington police have charged 24-year-old Jamar Cunningham with misdemeanor death by motor vehicle and an unsafe movement violation. Cunningham allegedly struck and killed Megan McClellan, 20, from Wilmington, on South 17th Street where Peel Stree and Patriot Way connect to South 17th.
According to the 911 recording, the tractor trailer driver was ‘audibly distraught’ and said that he did not see the bicyclist. McClellan had been recently married and died at the crash scene.
Long haul truck driving is one of the most important jobs in the US, as trucks deliver so much important goods across the country. Unfortunately, truck driving is inherently dangerous and can be made more so by the reckless and careless actions of truck drivers.
More than 100,000 injuries and 300,000 accidents involving commercial vehicles occurred in 2012, and truck driving has been ranked as one of the most dangerous jobs by Time magazine.
Our tractor trailer crash attorneys who are licensed in Virginia and North Carolina hope that this fatal tractor trailer-bicycle crash is a potent reminder to truckers to pay attention to their driving. Here are some critical safety tips for truckers:
- Watch blind spots: In the above bicycle crash, the trucker claimed that he did not see the biker at all. It could be that the biker was in one of the trucker’s blind spots. These are off to the side right in front of the cab, just behind the side mirrors and directly behind the trailer. The trucker needs to remember to watch these areas very closely, because many other drivers (or bikers) may not be aware of the danger.
- Slow down in work zones: Many tractor trailer accidents our personal injury attorneys have seen involved speeding in construction zones. In fact, 1/3 of deadly work zone accidents involve commercial trucks.
- Take care of your body: A huge part of driving a truck safely is getting enough rest when you are not driving. A fatigued truck driver can be a deadly truck driver.
When tractor trailer drivers do not drive safely, the resulting crash can be deadly. Our truck crash attorneys once settled a truck crash case in Norfolk, Virginia for $3.5 million when a trucker rear ended our client’s slow-moving vehicle on I-64. He also claimed that he did not see our client until it was too late, but the trucker had violated Virginia CDL rules, and we were able to obtain the $3.5 million truck crash settlement for the surviving family.
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