Saturday, August 1 was a particularly dangerous day for drivers on Interstate 75 in Manatee County. According to reports from the Florida Highway Patrol, that day featured two separate accidents involving large commercial trucks.
The first accident involved a tractor-trailer driven by a 69-year-old Sarasota man and occurred at approximately 3 p.m. on the southbound side of the freeway near mile marker 230. According to the police report, a so-called “phantom vehicle” cut off the truck by making an improper lane change. The truck driver reportedly attempted to avoid the vehicle by swerving to the right and then back to the left, but lost control and swerved to the right shoulder, where he hit several trees. The vehicle caught on fire and the driver managed to escape with only minor injuries.
The second accident occurred at approximately 10:15 p.m. on the northbound section of the freeway near mile marker 224. A truck driver going over the Jeff Young Bridge reportedly lost control of the rig in the middle of a severe thunderstorm, driving the truck off the bridge and down into the water. The 29-year-old driver was able to escape the vehicle and a passing boat rescued him. He was later treated for minor injuries.
The second accident was a single-vehicle crash caused by nature, but the first accident might be considered the fault of the driver who cut off the tractor-trailer. Drivers are expected to make sure they check their blind spots and confirm the way is clear before making lane changes on the highway. If investigators were to determine this driver made the lane change unsafely, that person could be liable for the crash and the resulting injuries.
To learn more about what you should do after a serious truck accident, meet with a trusted Bradenton personal injury attorney at Shapiro, Goldman, Babboni & Walsh.