According to KSLA, two individuals lost their lives, and three others sustained injuries following a harrowing three-vehicle collision on Monday morning. The Texas Department of Public Safety has reported that the incident occurred shortly before 9 a.m. on July 3, 2023, at the intersection of US 59 and FM 2208, approximately one mile south of Jefferson.
According to preliminary details released by officials, the chain of events unfolded as Jasmine Griffin, a 25-year-old resident of Jefferson, was driving a 2015 Dodge Journey west on FM 2208. Simultaneously, a 58-year-old man from Douglassville operated a 2005 Freightliner tractor trailer, traveling north on US 59. Tragically, a third vehicle, a 2015 Peterbilt tractor trailer, driven by a 61-year-old man from Pittsburg, Texas, was heading south on US 59. It was at this fateful intersection that Griffin's Dodge Journey entered, resulting in a catastrophic collision with the northbound 18-wheeler, causing it to roll over onto its side. The momentum from the rollover propelled the overturned trailer, ultimately striking the southbound 18-wheeler.
The crash claimed the lives of two occupants in the Dodge Journey, identified as Jasmine Griffin and her passenger, Eddie Bell, aged 32, from Marshall. Griffin was pronounced dead at the scene, while Bell was urgently transported to Ochsner LSU Health Shreveport for medical treatment. Tragically, Bell succumbed to his injuries a few hours later. A 5-year-old girl, also traveling in the Dodge Journey, sustained non-life-threatening injuries and was taken to CHRISTUS in Marshall for medical attention. Remarkably, all occupants of the Dodge Journey were wearing their seat belts at the time of the accident.
Both drivers of the 18-wheelers suffered "incapacitating" injuries and were promptly transported to CHRISTUS in Longview for urgent medical care. It is important to note that they were also wearing their seat belts, which likely mitigated the severity of their injuries.
In the aftermath of a devastating truck accident in Texas that resulted in loss of life and injuries, we sat down with renowned 18-wheeler accident lawyer, Marc Lenahan, Esq., to shed light on the legal recourse available to victims and their families. As an expert in this field, Mr. Lenahan shares his insights on pursuing a civil case against liable parties and provides guidance for those seeking compensation after a semi-truck accident.
Darla Medina: Thank you for joining us today, Mr. Lenahan. As a prominent 18-wheeler accident lawyer in Texas, we appreciate your insights. In light of the recent tragic truck accident, could you share some information on what victims and their families can do in terms of pursuing a civil case against the responsible parties?
Marc Lenahan, Esq.: Thank you, Darla. It's my pleasure to be here and provide some guidance. In cases like these, where victims and their families have suffered as a result of a truck accident, it's crucial to explore their options for seeking justice through a civil case.
DM: What are some key steps that victims and their families should consider in pursuing a civil case?
MH: Firstly, it's essential to consult with an experienced truck accident attorney who specializes in handling these types of cases. They can provide invaluable guidance throughout the legal process. Additionally, gathering evidence is crucial. This includes obtaining the accident report, photographs of the scene, witness statements, and any available surveillance footage. These pieces of evidence can play a vital role in establishing liability and supporting the victim's claim.
DM: What factors are typically considered in determining liability in truck accident cases?
MH: Liability in truck accident cases can be complex and involve multiple parties. It's important to thoroughly investigate the incident to determine all potentially responsible parties. This may include the truck driver, the trucking company, maintenance personnel, and even manufacturers if there are any product defects. Factors such as driver negligence, hours of service violations, inadequate maintenance, or improper loading may contribute to liability.
DM: Are there any legal challenges that victims and their families may face in pursuing a civil case?
MH: Yes, there can be various legal challenges. Trucking companies and their insurers often have aggressive legal teams who will work to minimize their liability. They may attempt to shift blame or downplay the extent of damages. Having a skilled attorney who understands the intricacies of truck accident litigation is crucial in effectively countering these challenges and ensuring that victims and their families receive fair compensation.
DM: Could you briefly touch upon the potential compensation available to truck accident victims and their families through a civil case?
MH: In civil cases, victims and their families may be entitled to various forms of compensation. This can include medical expenses, loss of income, pain and suffering, emotional distress, funeral expenses, and in cases of wrongful death, compensation for the loss of a loved one. Each case is unique, and the compensation awarded will depend on the specific circumstances and damages suffered.
DM: Thank you, Mr. Lenahan, for sharing your valuable insights and shedding light on what victims and their families can do in pursuing a civil case after a tragic truck accident.
MH: It's my pleasure, Darla. I hope that this information provides some guidance to those affected by such devastating accidents. Remember, consulting with an experienced attorney is crucial for navigating the legal process and seeking justice.