A recent motor vehicle accident on Highway 72 in Alabama’s Colbert County ended in tragedy.
According to reports, an eastbound truck hydroplaned, struck the median and collided into a westbound traveling vehicle. The driver of the westbound vehicle, a 41-year-old man from Starkville, died soon after he was transported to a local hospital in Birmingham. His wife was also an occupant in the vehicle but did not suffer serious injuries. The man’s three minor children were not in the vehicle.
The crash remains under investigation. However, as law firm that focuses on car accidents and wrongful death lawsuits, our investigation might explore whether the truck was traveling too fast under the given traffic, road and weather conditions. Excessive speed may have been a factor in causing the truck to hydroplane.
A family that loses someone to a fatal motor vehicle accident may have the right to a wrongful death lawsuit. For example, if negligence played a role in the truck’s hydroplaning, a legal claim may be brought against the negligent party. It is unclear whether the driver of the truck was acting privately or as an employee of a trucking company. In the latter case, a claim may be available against the trucker’s employer.
No amount of money will ever be able to take the place of the family’s lost husband and father in this story. Alabama law acknowledges that reality with its unique wrongful death statute. Instead of seeking to compensate the survivors, the law is set up to punish the negligent party. Hence, Alabama’s wrongful death statute awards punitive, rather than compensatory damages. That distinction may make the case more difficult for some, but not in the hands of an experienced attorney.
Source: The Dispatch, “Starkville man dies after Saturday wreck in Ala.,” Sept. 20, 2016