According to the Sun Sentinel, a South Florida teenager lost her life and her friend was taken to the hospital in critical condition when their SUV was rear-ended by an eighteen wheeler early last Wednesday, August 10, 2011.
SUV Was Disabled
Carol Sun was pronounced dead on the scene of the accident and her friend Patricia Bao-Tran Le had to be taken to a local hospital in critical condition. They were both 17 years old. Apparently something caused Patricia, who was driving the Toyota 4Runner, to hit the median wall and end up disabled on the right lane. Moments later they were hit by a tractor trailer and split in half.
Although not so long ago I was a parent that went through the worries and sleepless nights that come along with his kids’ early teenage driving, I can’t even start to imagine the pain that Carol’s parents are going through….My thoughts and prayers go out to them.
Driving Safety Rule
Driving in a safely manner is defined in the Florida Driver’s Handbook:
Section 5 – Driving Safety
Good driving is based on practice and being alert at the wheel. When driving, you must make sure that nothing interferes with your ability to see the road, react to situations or operate your vehicle properly. You must look down the road, to the sides and behind your vehicle and be alert for unexpected events. Be alert to what is going on around you and do not take your eyes off the road for more than a few seconds at any one time. Do not have objects inside your vehicle that might interfere with your ability to drive safely. This might include objects that obstruct your view of the road or mirrors.
5.1 – Distracted Drivers
Good drivers develop habits that focus their full attention on driving. Some drivers can develop bad habits that can be very dangerous when driving. Some bad habits that distract your attention away from driving are:
• Driving when ill, upset or angry.
• Driving while eating and drinking.
• Driving while adjusting the radio or changing CDs/tapes/digital players.
• Driving while calling, answering, talking or texting on a mobile phone.
• Reading while driving.
• Driving while drowsy or fatigued.
Moreover, Section 316.1925 of the Florida Statutes establishes in relevant part:
316.1925 Careless driving.–
(1) Any person operating a vehicle upon the streets or highways within the state shall drive the same in a careful and prudent manner, having regard for the width, grade, curves, corners, traffic, and all other attendant circumstances, so as not to endanger the life, limb, or property of any person. Failure to drive in such manner shall constitute careless driving and a violation of this section.
It is, of course, too early in the investigation to tell what caused the truck driver to not see the teenager’s disabled SUV and avoid crashing into it…However, some drivers get distracted or are too tired (especially those that have spent long hours behind the wheel, like long haul truck drivers) and, consequently, are not able to react fast enough to obstacles on the road. Many 18 wheeler crashes are caused by driver fatigue which is an avoidable situation. Many drivers and trucking companies do not follow the rules when it comes to driver rest. Driver drowsiness is the cause of many crashes. When driving a big rig, you must make sure that nothing interferes with your ability to see the road, react to situations or operate your truck properly.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, you should immediately contact a law firm experienced in handling these cases. The Miami Dade County Truck Accidents Law Offices of Greenberg Stone and Urbano has throughout the years represented many clients involved in traffic fatalities, traumatic brain injuries and serious personal injuries. Visit our website to learn more about our firm and contact us today for a free consultation.