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Garbage truck collision kills Massachusetts cyclist


Trucks and their drivers are a vital part of Massachusetts' economy. Box trucks, semi-trucks and delivery trucks all operate to make life easier and more enjoyable. Yet, the sheer size of these vehicles makes them dangerous when they are driven inappropriately. In a matter of seconds, an inattentive truck driver can cause an accident which results in serious injuries or death.

Unfortunately, one of these tragic truck accidents occurred recently, leaving a bicycle rider dead. Reports indicate a city garbage truck and the victim collided in what is known as a right-hook, a wreck where a vehicle passes a bike and then, once even with the bike, turns right into the bicycle rider's path, causing the bike to slam into the vehicle. With these accidents occurring more frequently than they should, activists are calling for stricter penalties for those who hit a cyclist or who cause a cyclist to hit their vehicle.

Though stricter laws may help raise awareness of these types of truck accidents, they will do little to help those who are harmed in an accident or, if the crash is fatal, for the victim's surviving family members. The good news is, though, that these victims or their families can seek to recover compensation from the driver who caused the accident. A Massachusetts attorney will fight to show negligence, which may mean putting forth evidence of an inattentive truck driver, intoxication or speeding.

Winning a civil claim may ease some of the financial burden unfairly thrust upon a truck accident victim or his or her family. Medical expenses, lost wages and, if necessary, funeral costs may all be recoverable. Additionally, an accident victim or his or her family may be able to obtain compensation for pain and suffering. Filing such a lawsuit therefore not only helps the victim or his or her family reach the fullest recovery possible, but it also holds a trucker and his or her company responsible for the harm that was caused.

Source: The Boston Globe, "Bike activists push for harsher penalties after cyclist's death," Martine Powers, April 4, 2014

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