Q: Telling the short story and I am mostly trying to find out if the truck was at fault.
There are 2 traffic lanes going North bound and 2 traffic lanes going South bound with a legal turning lane to make a left (no light to make turn) . I was in a car on the passenger side waiting to cross the 2 on coming lanes of North bound traffic. There is a traffic light slightly down the road North bound that had turned red. Traffic backed up way passed the turning lane we were in. Two vehicles in the two travel lanes stopped, both lanes left enough room for us to cross in front, we were traveling directly across from legal turning lane we were in. As we crossed, a truck traveling down the breakdown lane, approximately the speed limit marked at 55 mph T boned the car. Striking the front right tire well and engine area. The lane the truck was driving down was over the solid white line and no designated turning lane. The truck also had no indication of making a turn into that road as he had no blinker light on and was going too fast to make the turn. Is the opposing truck at fault?
A: Possibly. A jury would make that determination. States have different comparative fault laws, but most states have a framework that would allow a jury to determine if the driver of the vehicle you were in has fault, or whether the truck has fault. A jury could determine either have fault or one of those drivers deserves all of the fault.
A: Sounds like the truck is at fault, but it is equally possible that the driver of the car you were in was also partly at fault. Any negligence contributing to the accident would bar the claim of either driver--car and truck. However, as a passenger, you cannot be negligent. You have a claim for personal injuries (if you were injured) against the driver of the car you were in as well as the driver of the truck. That would trigger the insurance coverage for both vehicles. Hire a lawyer if you were injured.
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A: Yes they are. It should have reflected it on the wreck report. That’s the first place to start, with it. You can go to ALEA.gov and obtain the report instantly for a small fee. You also need to contact a lawyer immediately because you are not at fault. You can collect for injuries from both the driver of the vehicle you were a passenger in, and the truck.
A: As you might imagine this is a highly complex situation and not a question that can be answered in an online forum. I would strongly suggest to you that you consult with one or more experienced personal injury attorneys who can analyze the specific facts, review police reports and witness information, and give you an informed intelligent opinion as to who might bear responsibility. Certainly as you indicate as a passenger you do not. From the facts you provided one most or all of the other involved drivers, might.
A: As you know, the facts of the case determine who may be at fault and each party may have their own version of what occurred. Each State has its own statutes or laws which govern the operation of a motor vehicle. There usually is a law that speaks to and may prohibit the operation of a vehicle off the travel portion of the highway. If the truck driver violated that law, he may be partially at fault. Usually also the person turning left at an intersection should yield to any oncoming traffic approaching from the driver's right. That is what is usually called yielding the "right of way". It is common in these cases that more than one person is at fault and that is called "comparative negligence". The Jury or Judge would compare each operator's actions to determine who contributed to the collision and how they did so. The Jury or Judge usually then assigns a percentage to each driver's fault which would total 100%. In this case the truck is a commercial vehicle and there are special state and federal regulations which apply to truck drivers which may increase that driver's responsibilities on the road. I would recommend that you consult with a personal injury attorney in your location who is experienced in handling these types of cases and who is knowledgeable about tractor trailer or trucking cases and the operation of commercial vehicles for assistance. I wish you good luck in your claim.
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