There are many different types of negligence that lead to devastating truck accidents, but when a person with a medical condition gets behind the wheel of a tractor-trailer or other large truck, it is necessary to demonstrate that the driver knew about the condition in order to establish liability. The importance of this issue has led to the dedication of resources by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) in order to address how different medical conditions affect a person’s ability to drive.
When a person has been injured in an accident caused by the truck driver’s medical condition, it is critical to build an effective case. The tenacious and knowledgeable Miami car accident attorneys at Greenberg Stone and Urbano have more than 130 years of experience in gathering the evidence that is necessary to prove the driver’s negligence.
The FMCSA has created a number of medical reports that address the medical conditions that can impact a person’s ability to operate successfully a large truck. These papers are drafted by medical experts, including scientists and physicians. Some of the conditions that have been addressed by the FMCSA include:
• Cardiovascular disease;
• Cochlear implants and other hearing disorders;
• Obstructive sleep apnea and other sleep disorders;
• Traumatic brain injury (TBI);
• Seizure disorders;
• Multiple sclerosis;
• Renal disease;
• Musculoskeletal disease; and • Psychiatric disease.
The medical panels that are convened address the different issues that can impact a driver’s operation of the vehicle. The Medical Expert Panel (MEP) has the goal of improving road conditions for everyone. The MEP Program assists the FMCSA in establishing standards for drivers who are involved in interstate trucking. The guidelines that are established by these panels instruct drivers and trucking companies about making decisions on who can safely haul loads. When these guidelines are ignored, the driver and/or trucking company may be held responsible for the harm that is caused.
If there is an accident, it is necessary to analyze the facts that led to the crash to determine if the driver was negligent. In situations where the driver knew about the medical condition, an experienced attorney will review whether the medical condition has been reviewed by the MEP Program of the FMCSA. Where the condition has been addressed, the question becomes whether the driver has violated the guidelines by operating the vehicle. If the driver did not know about the condition, the issues becomes whether the person should have known about the medical issue.
A negligence case where a medical condition caused the accident will require extensive evidence, including:
• The driver’s medical records;
• The driver’s medical Department of Transportation (DOT) form, which he must have included in order to operate the interstate commercial truck; and • Any other documents relating to the health of the truck driver, including documents that indicate that the trucking company was aware of the medical condition.
The MEP Program is one more tool to ensure that truck drivers are safe on the road. When a truck driver’s actions lead to an accident, it is important to take immediate action to gather the evidence necessary to prove fault.
Greenberg Stone and Urbano Advocates on Behalf of Truck Accident Victims
When a commercial truck driver has made the decision to get behind the wheel with a dangerous medical condition, he likely is liable for the resulting harm. The South Florida truck accident law firm of Greenberg Stone and Urbano has spent more than 30 years developing the skill to get the right results for our clients. The firm has received an AV rating from Martindale Hubbell, which is a peer-based rating recognizing our dedication to legal excellence. We also were voted one of South Florida’s top-rated firms by the Miami Herald. Call us at (888) 499-9700 or (305) 595-2400 or visit our website to schedule an initial appointment so that we can discuss your case.