Athens, GA

The city of Athens is located in northeast Georgia and has a population of approximately 101,400 making it the fifth largest city in Georgia. Athens is located in Athens-Clarke County, which is a unified city-county. Athens is home to Athens Technical College and the University of Georgia. There are two main trucking routes that run through Athens: US 441 and US 78. US 441 runs north from Athens to Clarkesville, Georgia and south to become US 129 which continues south to Macon, Georgia. US 78 runs west from Athens to Atlanta and east to Augusta. Athens Ben Epps Airport provides air service to Athens.

Recent Truck Accidents in the Area

June 4, 2011 – U.S. Highway 441 near Nature Center Road about two miles south of Sandy Creek Park

Two 10-year-old old boys, Evan Escoe of Hull, Georgia and Samuel Hart of Comer, Georgia, were killed when the Chevrolet Malibu they were in was rear-ended by a tractor-trailer at 1 p.m. in Athens, Georgia. The boys were headed to Sandy Creek Park, which has a lake beach for swimming. Evan was killed instantly, and Samuel died at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite around 3 p.m. Samuel’s mother, Elisha Hart, was driving north with her 8-year-old son, Carter, in the front passenger seat and Evan and Samuel in the backseat. She slowed for a car in front of her that was turning into a business and the tractor-trailer driven by a 57 year-old man from North Carolina suddenly hit her car from behind.

Failure to Reduce Speed/Close Following Distance: Truck drivers have to manage space in front of them and to keep a diligent lookout for other vehicles in order to have sufficient time and space to stop for slowing traffic. Because of the weight of the tractor-trailer, a truck driver of a standard 60-foot tractor-trailer must keep a distance of 6 seconds from the vehicle in front of him/her at speeds under 40 mph. As speed increases, the truck driver must allow additional time to stop. At 55 mph, it will take a tractor-trailer about 450 feet to stop. The most common cause of truck accidents is the failure of the truck driver to allow enough time and space from the vehicle in front of him/her. The results of this error in judgment are usually catastrophic as the 80,000 lb tractor-trailer collides with the back of a stopped or slowing vehicle. This kind of rear-end accident is always preventable if the truck driver would simply follow standard guidelines for safe driving. We have handled a number of rear-end accidents involving tractor-trailers and commercial vehicles. You can click here to see our case results.

May 21, 2011 – Ga 11

Andrew Christopher Stephens, 31, was killed when his 2000 Ford Explorer collided with a tractor-trailer that was hauling heavy construction equipment around 5:30 p.m. in Winder, Georgia. Stephens was ejected from his car and died at the scene. The police are still investigating the cause of the accident.

Smith System of Defensive Driving: Truck drivers must be diligent in their lookout for vehicles around them. Because of the size and velocity of a tractor-trailer, even a low speed collision with a passenger vehicle can have devastating results. Truck drivers are taught to use the Smith System of Defensive Driving. The Smith System cautions the truck driver to beware of traffic around them and to always have an escape route in mind for all traffic on the highway. Truck drivers are professional drivers and are held to a higher standard of care than a regular driver like you and me. We have handled numerous collisions involving tractor-trailers and commercial vehicles. You can see our case results by clicking here.

Georgia Law

Interstate trucking companies are governed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (“FMCSR”), including trucking operations, driver qualifications, hours of service, maintenance of equipment, insurance, and alcohol and drug testing. Georgia also has state specific regulations governing intrastate trucking companies. Intrastate trucking companies pick up and deliver loads only in the state of Georgia and do not cross state lines. By statute, Georgia has adopted many of the federal regulations as also being applicable to intrastate trucking companies. Under Georgia law, intrastate trucking companies must have minimum insurance of $100,000/ $300,000 in liability coverage. Georgia also has a special exemption for logging trucks from many regulations applicable to other commercial vehicles.

Contact Us

If you or a loved one has been a victim of a trucking accident, you should contact a trucking attorney at Fried Rogers Goldberg LLC as soon as possible to make sure that evidence is preserved and not destroyed by the trucking company. You can contact us by calling 877-591-1801 or clicking here to email us.

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