Girardi | Keese

Cement Truck Injures 12 Drivers, Employer Likely Liable

This week saw a serious freeway accident in Los Angeles. According to news accounts, a cement truck swerved suddenly across all four lanes of traffic as it was entering the freeway. The truck hit a van and then crashed into a center divider.

Twelve other people suffered injuries-at least three of the victims were hospitalized with critical injuries. Authorities did not immediately comment on the condition of the other nine

Based on the available facts, the driver was not necessarily intoxicated and a vehicle malfunction did not appear to have played a role. It is possible that the driver simply was not paying attention and lost control of the large vehicle that his employer entrusted him to drive. 

A set of legal rules known as "respondeat superior" will likely allow the victims of this crash to hold the driver's employer accountable. The rule generally requires employers to compensate victims when an employee's on-the-job negligence causes a motor vehicle accident or injuries. Because companies usually profit from their business operations, it is only fair for them to pay when those operations cause pain and suffering.

Source: CBS Los Angeles, "12 Injured, Including Pregnant Woman, In Crash Involving Cement Truck," June 25, 2013

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