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Fatal truck accident brings involuntary manslaughter charge

A man from Jackson, Missouri has been charged with second-degree assault and involuntary manslaughter charges in connection with an accident that killed a 17-year-old girl this spring. The man was driving a delivery truck when he lost control of the truck and crossed the centerline of the highway. He then jerked the truck back towards his lane when the SUV the girl was a passenger in attempted to avoid his truck.

The truck struck the SUV head-on and the girl died at the scene from injuries she suffered in the truck accident. In an affidavit, the Missouri State Highway Patrol indicated that blood tests performed on the truck driver after the accident found traces of marijuana and methamphetamine. 

We all know how dangerous driving drunk is, and drugged driving can be equally dangerous. A witness stated that the driver of the truck was looking down as the truck crossed the centerline of the road. Another witness claimed they had seen him smoking marijuana prior to the crash.

The father of the girl who died has filed a wrongful death suit against the truck driver and his employer. In these types of cases, negligent supervision and hiring may be alleged against the employer. An employer hiring a truck driver should examine his or her driving record to prevent placing a person with a chronic substance abuse problem behind the wheel of a truck.

If the man had a history of drug use or reckless driving, and the employer knew or should have known of it, it may be possible to hold them responsible for some portion of the truck crash.

 If you have been involved in a truck accident with an intoxicated or drugged driver, speak with an attorney to determine your right to compensation.

Source: Southeast Missourian, "Affidavit: Man had meth, pot in his system before crash that killed teen," Emily Priddy, August 28, 2013

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