A recent cement truck accident on January 16 on Route Z, east of Columbia, MO, resulting in the death of the driver, serves as a reminder of the inherent dangers of working in this industry.
In this most recent accident, the driver was in an Emery Sapp & Sons truck when the vehicle traveled off the right side of the roadway, then returned to the road, before ultimately going off the left side of the road and flipping over. The driver was pronounced dead at the scene.
This tragic incident highlights the dangers that truck drivers face every day on the job. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics identifies truck driving as one of the most dangerous occupations in the United States. Truck drivers can be injured or killed while on the road or suffer injuries related to overexertion or from coming into contact with different types of equipment.
According to a report by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Analysis Division (FMCSA), there are over 400,000 crashes involving truck drivers every year. Although approximately 40% of these are single-vehicle accidents, such as the recent accident near Columbia, they are not always the fault of the truck driver. In a large portion of these crashes, the overriding cause is negligent maintenance. In a study by FMCSA (a division of the U.S. Department of Transportation), poor maintenance was a contributing factor in almost 40% of truck accidents. These included issues such as failed braking systems (29%), tire issues (6%), and improperly loaded trailers (4%).
The Importance of Workers’ Compensation Representation
This incident also brings to light why it’s so important for workers to have legal representation if they are injured or killed on the job. The family of workers who suffer injuries or fatalities in the line of work have rights under the law and can seek compensation for their losses. In Missouri, workers’ compensation is a state-mandated insurance system that provides medical coverage and lost wages to employees injured on the job. It also provides benefits that can provide financial support to help cover expenses such as funeral costs, as well as provide a portion of the deceased’s lost wages to the family if an employee dies on the job. In many cases, is a critical lifeline for the families of those killed while on the job.
How a Columbia Workers’ Comp Attorney Can Help
Obtaining benefits under these laws can be incredibly difficult, however, as there are numerous rules and regulations that must be followed in order to secure compensation. It is important to note that in some cases, the employer or the insurance company may contest the claim for death benefits. For example, if the accident was caused by the driver’s own negligence, the employer may argue that the driver is not eligible for benefits. Additionally, the employer may argue that the driver was an independent contractor, rather than an employee, and therefore not eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.
In order to ensure that the family of the deceased is able to receive the benefits they are entitled to, it is important to seek the help of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney. A Columbia truck accident attorney can help the family navigate the legal process and advocate for their rights to receive the benefits they deserve. This is why workers’ compensation and personal injury law exists to guarantee justice and financial support for workers who experience an accident in the line of work.
In the wake of this tragic accident, it is important to remember that truck drivers and other workers in dangerous occupations face significant risks every day on the job. While the risk of accidents can never be fully eliminated, it is important to protect workers and ensure that their families are provided with the support they need in the event of a tragic loss.
Contact us if You or a Loved One Have Been Injured or Killed in a Trucking Accident
At the Columbia Law Office of Chris Miller, we are experienced in handling workers’ compensation claims, personal injury cases, and all other types of truck accident compensation matters. We aggressively pursue justice on behalf of those injured and seek maximum compensation for their losses. Our team of experienced attorneys is available to answer any questions you may have about your legal rights and options. Contact us today for a free consultation.