New Mexico

Pedestrian Killed by Drugged Driver in Roswell: New Mexico Personal Injury Attorney Explains

- Mark Caruso

Drugged Driver Strikes and Kills Woman Walking on US 380 Outside Roswell, New Mexico

New outlets are reporting that a pedestrian who was walking along US Highway 380 in Lincoln, New Mexico was struck and killed by a drugged driver on July 12, 2017.  Beverly Bradburry Cline of Kilgore, Texas was walking in the shoulder of the highway when the vehicle driver by Margaret Cano-Sammis left the road and struck Cline causing fatal injuries.  First responders pronounced Cline deceased at the scene.  The driver, Cano-Sammis, admitted to using medicinal marijuana and methadone earlier in the day and was arrested for alleged vehicular homicide.

Cline’s death could have been avoided.  But unfortunately it was not, and many other people across New Mexico are injured or killed on highways, interstates, and other roads throughout the state.  Here at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., we know that most motor vehicle crashes can be avoided.  Drugged driving accidents are on the rise and result in more fatal collisions than drunk driving.  If you or a loved one has been injured or killed, call our experienced Roswell car accident attorneys for a FREE consultation by dialing (505) 883-5000.

This sad news story brings up many interesting legal issues to be discussed.  All parties are innocent until proven guilty, but this does not mean that there may not be liability to explain.

Pedestrian Collisions in New Mexico

Whenever a motor vehicle strikes a pedestrian in New Mexico, it is very likely that the driver will be negligent as a matter of law.  This is because New Mexico Stat. 66-7-337 provides that “every driver of a vehicle shall exercise due care to avoid colliding with any pedestrian upon any roadway[.]”  This law is intended to protect pedestrians on or around the roadway from being struck by a motor vehicle.  When this occurs, it can result in serious personal injuries or death.  Victims can be permanently injured or killed in pedestrian knockdowns.

Therefore, under the doctrine of negligence per se the driver who strikes and injures a pedestrian will be found automatically negligent for violating this statute.  The driver may provide a rebuttable presumption that the pedestrian solely caused or contributed to the subject accident, but it is a difficult position to be in.

Also under the common law, or judge-made law, a pedestrian struck by a car will have the common law definition of negligence on their side.  This provides that a motorist must use reasonable care under the circumstances and in the use and operation of his or her vehicle to avoid striking a pedestrian.  If that occurs, the defendant is likely negligent under the common law standard for negligence as well.

Drugged Driving is a Serious Problem

Cline was killed by a driver who admitted to taking controlled substances earlier in the day, including marijuana.  Many people are under the impression that marijuana is not as dangerous as other drugs, and is safe to drive under the influence of.  However, medicinal marijuana is used to help relax an anxious person and fight certain ailments.  It can calm a person and slow down their alertness and ability to react.  This can obviously be dangerous when traveling on a highway such as US 380, or even an interstate such as I-40, I-25, or I-10.

A drugged driver be also be negligent per se.  This is because NM Stat. 66-8-102 provides that it is “illegal for a person who is under the influence of any drug to a degree that renders the person incapable of safety driving a vehicle to drive a vehicle in this state.”  Any drug in a driver’s system will result in liability.

Where to Commence an Action: New Mexico or Texas?

The victim was from Texas but killed due to the apparent negligence of a driver in New Mexico.  A common question is where should the victim’s family commence an action?  This is known as a conflict of law issue and a venue question.  There are classes in law school which cover just this topic because the area of law is complicated and very important.

However the simple answer is that the victim will likely best be protected by suing in New Mexico.  This is because the conflict of laws approach generally requires torts—civil wrongs such as negligence in a car accident—to be commenced in the state where the tort occurred.  This means that Cline’s family can commence an action in New Mexico for wrongful death.  While Cline’s family could commence an action in Texas, it is likely to be dismissed or transferred back to New Mexico.

And this happens a lot.  Truck drivers working for some of the largest trucking companies across the country such as Schneider, Estes, US Parcel, and McLane are usually from Upland, Ontario, Rancho Cucamonga, San Bernardino, and other nearby cities in California.  This is a major trucking hub which uses New Mexico’s interstates such as I-10 to cut across the country.  When these drivers are injured in New Mexico trucking accidents but live in California, most of them choose to commence an action in New Mexico to protect their rights.

Pedestrian Collisions Caused by Drugged Drivers Brings Serious Liability Issues

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, call the experienced New Mexico car accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. today by dialing (505) 883-5000 You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.

Rio Rancho Pileup Crash Possibly Caused by Drugs Sends Local Teacher to Hospital; Rio Rancho Personal Injury Attorney Explains

- Mark Caruso

Pileup Crash Caused by Possibly Drugged Driver Which Rear-ended Another Car Sends Multiple People to the Hospital; Rio Rancho Personal Injury Attorney Shares Thoughts

Multiple news outlets are reporting a six car pileup in Rio Rancho, New Mexico which has sent several people to the hospital.  This includes a beloved teacher from Rio Rancho High School, Matt Farley.  Police are still investigating the cause of the crash, but believe that one driver, a female motorist driving an Infiniti rear-ended a Volkswagen that was stopped at a red light.  The preliminary investigation shows that the female motorist may have been driving drugged at the time of the subject accident.  No charges have been filed yet, but she may face several charges for starting this dangerous and potentially deadly pileup.

Here at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., our experienced Rio Rancho car accident attorneys have handled many pileup car crashes which have seriously injured or taken the life of victims.  These crashes can be very difficult because there are usually a lot of possible causes to the crash and several possibly liable parties.  But we have the experienced, knowledge, and resources to work with police, private investigators, and do our own investigation to uncover the causes of these accidents.  If you or a loved one have been injured in the above-referenced accident or a similar motor vehicle accident in Rio Rancho, Albuquerque, Las Cruces, or anywhere else in New Mexico, call us today for a FREE consultation by dialing (505) 883-5000.

Liability in Rear End Car Crashes

Whenever a driver rear-ends another vehicle, there is almost always doing to be liability against that rear-ending driver.  This is because there needs to be a non-negligent excuse for rear-ending another vehicle, such as an emergency and unknown medical emergency (i.e. a sudden heart attack) or some other cause outside the control of the driver (i.e., rear-ended by another vehicle and pushed into the rear of another vehicle).

This is codified in both the common law, or judge-made law, and the statutory law, or legislatively made law.  Under NM Stat Section 66-7-318, which governs following too closely, subdivision (A) provides that “[t]he driver of a motor vehicle shall not follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due regard for the speed of such vehicles and the traffic upon and the condition of the highway.”

When a driver does this and causes serious personal injuries to another, or like this case causes a pileup car crash, he or she may be automatically liable for the crash under the doctrine of negligence per se.  This doctrine finds a person liable for causing a harm to another person that is protected by the statute.  Here, the New Mexico statute protects all motorists from being injured in rear-end collisions.

Drugged Driving and Motor Vehicles: A Dangerous Combination

The initial police investigation believed that the female driver of the Infiniti was operating her vehicle was under the influence of drugs.  This is just a preliminary finding, and she has not been charged and is innocent until proven guilty.  This post should in no way be considered charging her with guilt of liability.

But it brings up an interesting point of law and common issues occurring.  A few months ago we reported that drugged driving was now more common than drunk driving, which is a terrifying finding.  Drugged driving can be just as bad as drunk driving, if not worse.  Motor ability, reaction time, perception, and other important and necessary factors required to safely operate a motor vehicle will be impaired while drugged driving.

As you would expect, drugged driving is both illegal under the common law and statutory law.  It goes without saying that a motorist must maintain his or her facilities when operating a motor vehicle, and to use the reasonable care that a reasonably prudent driver would under the circumstances.  A reasonably prudent person would not use drugs and drive.

Under the statutory law, NM Stat. 66-8-102 makes it “illegal for a person who is under the influence of any drug to a degree that renders the person incapable of safety driving a vehicle to drive a vehicle in this state.”  If a driver drives drugged, it will result in a finding of negligence per se which renders a drugged driver automatically liable.

Rear-end and Drugged Driving Crashes in Rio Rancho Deserve Representation from the Caruso Law Offices, P.C.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, call the experienced New Mexico car accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. today by dialing (505) 883-5000 You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.

Albuquerque Bus Accident Causing Wrongful Deaths

- Mark Caruso

Victims of Albuquerque Bus Accidents Resulting in the Wrongful Death of a Passenger Requires Strong Legal Representation

The City of Albuquerque, New Mexico transit and bus system, ABQ Ride, is an important system and function in our city.  It is heavily relied upon and used by a large number of people to get to work, school, run errands, and engage in leisure activities.  We rely on these buses for timely, affordable, and safe travel.  However, sometimes this is not always the case.  These buses are very large and heavy, and can cause very serious and permanent injuries in a bus crash.  Not only can passengers on the bus be seriously injured, but any vehicle or person who is hit with the motor vehicle can be seriously injured or killed in even low-speed collisions.

Here are the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., our experienced Albuquerque bus accident attorneys represent those injured or killed in these types of horrific accidents.  We know how to claim, prove, and win claims for pain and suffering, lost wages, lost earnings, loss of services/consortium, medical expenses, future medical care, wrongful death, and many other claims.  Call us today to learn how we can protect your rights to compensation by dialing (505) 883-5000 for a FREE consultation.

Causes of Albuquerque Bus Accidents Which Injure or Kill People in New Mexico

There are several causes to all Albuquerque bus accidents which can result in liability and a finding of negligence to allow a victim to recover.  This includes the following:

  • Driver inexperience;
  • Wide-turns;
  • Excessive speed;
  • Improper lane change;
  • Distracted driving;
  • Driving while fatigued;
  • Failing to yield;
  • Running a red light;
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol;
  • Using a cell phone while driving to call or text;
  • Taking a turn too fast;
  • Jumping a curb;
  • Not paying attention/zoning out;
  • Failing to stop at a stop sign;
  • Backing up improperly;
  • Turning without a directional signal;
  • Mechanical failure or a brake, wheel, or tire;
  • Dust storms or other adverse weather; and
  • Many other causes.

Do you believe any one of these causes caused your Albuquerque bus accident?  Were you a victim and think something mentioned above happened to you?  Call us today for a free consultation by dialing (505) 883-5000.

Common Injuries in Albuquerque Bus Accidents

Since a bus is a very large commercial vehicle, there can be very significant and damaging injuries caused to passengers or other drivers in other vehicles.  The sheer size and speed of a large bus can simply pulverize bone, destroy tissue, and permanently damage a person’s body.  These include the following types of very common injuries:

  • Broken bones;
  • Organ damage;
  • Traumatic brain injuries;
  • Spinal cord injuries;
  • Back injuries;
  • Nerve damage;
  • Torn tendons or rotator cuffs in the shoulder;
  • Torn tendons or ligaments in the knee such as an ACL, MCL, PCL, LCL, or meniscus;
  • Large scars and lacerations;
  • Lung damage or ruptures;
  • Blindness;
  • Paralysis;
  • TMJ;
  • Dental injuries;
  • Collapsed rib cage;
  • Burn injuries;
  • Chemical burns;
  • Wrongful death; and
  • Many other injuries.

Albuquerque Bus Accidents Seriously Injure or Kill Victims Who Should Call Us Today

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, call the experienced New Mexico car accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. today by dialing (505) 883-5000 You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.

Motorist Killed When Cargo from Truck Falls Off and Hits Her: Las Cruces Trucking Accident Attorneys Explain

- Mark Caruso

Innocent Woman is Killed in a Las Cruces Trucking Accident When Improperly Secured Cargo Launched off a Commercial Truck and Into Her Vehicle

News outlets are reporting that a southern New Mexico woman, 51 year old Amelia Dominguez, was killed in a New Mexico trucking accident on State Route 9.  Cargo fell off of the commercial truck and launched into her vehicle.  She was severely injured and died days later at an area hospital.  The truck was going one way and she was going in the opposite direction.  The police investigation found that that a safety tie down restraint broke or otherwise disengaged from the load.  The load then launched into the opposite lane where Ms. Dominguez was driving in the opposite direction.

Here at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., we know that all aspects of commercial trucking is dangerous.  Sometimes the actual truck itself is not what can kill a victim.  Excessive cargo, unsecured cargo, and improperly transporting objects can be just as deadly as falling asleep at the wheel.  Our experienced Las Cruces New Mexico trucking accident attorneys have the resources, knowledge, and experiences in handling these types of very serious trucking crashes.  If you or a loved one have been seriously injured or killed in a trucking accident due to falling cargo, call us for a FREE consultation by dialing (505) 883-5000 to learn how we can protect your rights to compensation.

All Truck Drivers and Trucking Companies Are Responsible for Cargo on Their Commercial Trucks

Under New Mexico Law, according to NM Stat. 66-7-364 it is illegal to place injurious material on a highway which includes cargo from a truck.  There is also New Mexico common law, or judge-made law, which requires truck drivers to guard against cargo falling off of their vehicles and striking others on the roadway.  It would be negligent to allow cargo to fall off and recklessly or unnecessarily harm another.

There are also extensive federal regulations of FMSCA which allow throughout the United States.  Specifically, these regulations require that all truck drivers and truck companies must inspect and secure their cargo pursuant to 49 CFR s 392.9.  In fact, truck drivers must even inspect their truck within the first 50 miles after beginning a trip and make adjustments.  In addition, 49 CFR s 393.100 also contains protections against shifting and falling cargo and provides an extensive list of scenarios, fixes, and devices that must be done.

When a truck driver and trucking company fail to comply with New Mexico statutory law, New Mexico common law, and the federal regulations, it can result serious personal injuries to a victim in a Las Cruces trucking accident like to Ms. Domingeuz.  This can be negligent.  Under the doctrine of negligence per se, the violation of a statute meant to protect a victim from harm will automatically result in a finding of negligence.  Meaning that the trucking company and truck driver are automatically liable.

However, a violation of a federal regulation is only evidence of negligence–it is not automatically.  Nonetheless, a violation of federal regulations is a strong tool to use against a defendant trucking company or truck driver which killed an innocent person.

In the case above, it is highly likely that the trucking company or truck driver will be negligent as a matter of law for Ms. Dominguez’ untimely and horrific death under negligence per se and under the common law.

Unsecured Cargo Can Kill, and If it Does Call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. to Protect Your Rights Today!

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, call the experienced New Mexico car accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. today by dialing (505) 883-5000 You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.

New Mexico Statistics for July Fourth: Scary Statistics for Just One Day

- Mark Caruso

New Mexico State Police Release Independence Day Traffic Statistics, and The Findings are Startling!

Last week we dedicated several blog posts to Independence Day and the traffic dangerous of this holiday.  Indeed, July Fourth is one of the deadliest and most dangerous days for any driver on the road in New Mexico.  Nationally, July 4th is a day of the year where the most traffic collisions occur and fatalities.  According to reports, year it was estimated to be the largest year of travel, with more than 44 million Americans traveling 50 miles or more.  This is an increase of almost 3 percent from last year, or a million more people.

Here at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., we know that this means an uptick in serious New Mexico motor vehicle accidents.  This is particularly true on highways or interstates, such as I-10, I-40, and I-25.  Fast moving roadways combined with more traffic and less experienced drivers is a recipe for very serious motor vehicle collisions.  If you or a loved one were serious injured or killed in a New Mexico crash last week, call our experienced Albuquerque motor vehicle accident attorneys by dialing (505) 883-5000 for a FREE consultation to learn what your rights to compensation may be.

New Mexico Shares Traffic Statistics from July Fourth and the Outcome is SCARY!

According to the New Mexico State Police Report, there were 2,765 traffic citations issued on Independence Day.  Of these, 37 resulted in drunk driving arrests and 16 people were arrested for drug related offenses.  Drunk and drugged driving are one of the most dangerous risks that a driver could take while driving a motor vehicle.  Motor vehicle accidents caused by drunk or drugged driving are negligent and do kill people.

Of these citations, 283 citations were issued to commercial vehicles.  This includes large trucks such as big rigs, tankers, 18 wheelers, flatbeds, tandem trailers, and other large commercial vehicles.  Citations are generally issued for conduct which puts us all at risk.  Thus they are safely related and meant to safe lives.  When a violation results in the death or injury of another, that can be negligence per se and a victim can receive compensation for his or her injuries due to a truck driver and trucking company’s negligence in causing a truck crash.

On Independence Day only, there were a total of 65 motor vehicle crashes.  That is 2.7 crashes every hour or one every 22 minutes.  That is scary!  Of these, luckily, none were fatal.  But these did result in very serious personal injuries to many victims and these did cause significant bodily harm to victims.

Injured on July Fourth, Call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. for Legal Representation

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, call the experienced New Mexico car accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. today by dialing (505) 883-5000 You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.

Things Truck Drivers Don’t Want You to Know About New Mexico Trucking Accidents

- Mark Caruso

New Mexico Truck Drivers Don’t Want Victims of New Mexico Trucking Accidents to Know These Things

Victims who have been injured in serious New Mexico trucking accidents have rights to compensation in a personal injury lawsuit that truck drivers and trucking companies do not want you to know about.  Period.  But the experienced New Mexico trucking accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. need to ensure that victims know their rights to compensation.  If you or a loved one have been injured in a New Mexico trucking crash, call us immediately to learn how we can protect your rights by dialing (505) 883-5000 today.

Secrets Truck Drivers Don’t Want You Knowing

Truck drivers that make mistakes on the highway or interstates such as I-40, I-25, or I-10 can easily kill occupants of passenger vehicles.  When this happens, victims have many tools to win a lawsuit and obtain compensation against the trucking company and truck driver.  But they don’t want victims to know about these things.  Here are some important things to know to win:

Hours of Service Regularly are Regularly Violated – Trucking companies and truck drivers must follow federal hours of service regulations.  However, trucking is a business and time is money.  Truck drivers regularly lie on their log books or inaccurately keep time.  They stretch their hours of sleeping or resting to they can continue driving more than legally allowed.  However, almost all trucks have computers on their engines which monitor time being used and time not used.  This can be downloaded and you can establish that the hours of service regulations were being violated.

Many Truck Drivers are Abusing Caffeine or Drugs to Stay Awake – Driving across the country constantly can be very tiring.  Especially when you do it several times and are constantly driving.  This is why truck drivers need to help keep themselves awake by taking caffeine supplements or other products to stay awake.  Yet there is no real replacement for sleep to make yourself awake, alert, and ready.  Some truck drivers even turn to illegal drugs such as cocaine and other stimulants to keep them awake longer and able to drive longer.  This can affect a driver’s ability to react to traffic patterns; drugged driving and driving under the influence or while ability impaired is illegal.  Truck drivers don’t want victims to know how common it really is.

Truck Drivers are Taught to Rear End the Vehicle in Front of Them Rather Than Try to Truck Away – If a truck driver is not paying attention or is unable to stop in time before rear ending another vehicle, truck drivers are actually taught to rear end that vehicle instead of trying to swerve at the last second.  The reason is that swerving could result in the truck jackknifing, flipping over, or hitting multiple other vehicles instead of just one.  If a truck blocks an entire highway, many more people could be seriously injured or killed instead of just the victims in one vehicle.  Thus, the car in the front is a sacrifice in a trucking accident.  Truck drivers are also taught that swerving can result in them getting killed, whereas in a rear end collision it is entirely unlikely.

Truck Drivers Hate This Blog Post, But You Should Bookmark it And Call if You or a Loved One Are Every Hurt in a New Mexico Trucking Accident

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, call the experienced New Mexico car accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. today by dialing (505) 883-5000 You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.

After a July Fourth Car Crash in New Mexico, Get Medical Treatment Then Call a Lawyer

- Mark Caruso

Independence Day is a Known Holiday for More Car Accidents: If You Were a Victim, Get Medical Treatment Then Call a New Mexico Car Crash Lawyer

Independence Day is one of the largest traffic days of the year.  This also means it is one of the most dangerous and deadliest days to be a motorist on the road.  If you were seriously injured or lost a loved one in a car crash on Independence Day, now is not the time to be a hero and “walk it off” regarding your injuries.  If you are hurt, you need to get medical treatment and tell your doctors what hurts now.  Do not delay.  This can hurt your lawsuit.

After you get your medical treatment, you need to contact an experienced New Mexico car crash lawyer like those at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C.  We have handled many motor vehicle accidents occurring on or near holidays and work with families to protect the rights of their loved ones.  Call us today for a FREE consultation to learn your rights to compensation by dialing (505) 883-5000.

Step One: After a Car Accidents Get Medical Attention

It should be obvious, but if you are really hurt you need to call 911 and obtain medical treatment.  This needs to be done right away.  Never refuse necessary medical treatment.

If you are injured but refused medical treatment, you really should reconsider for several reasons.  First, this is your body and if you do not take care of your injuries now, you may not be able to repair the damage done later.  Second, delaying treatment after your motor vehicle accident can actually harm your case.

For example, if you wait months to seek treatment for a back or head injury, a competent defense attorney will attack the gap in treatment between your car accident and seeking treatment.  This effects the causation of the accident.  Meaning that the accident may not be causally related to the accident.  Said differently, the accident may not have caused your injuries.  This is why you need to immediately get medical treatment when you are hurt.

Additionally, to a jury or defendant it may appear that you are just seeking money for your prior existing injuries or trying to abuse the system.  If this happens you will likely end up with nothing or much lower than what you are entitled to.  Do not be a hero.  Explain everything that aches, even if just a little bit of pain, make sure you explain it to the doctor and get it documented in your medical records.

Step Two: After Medical Treatment, Call a New Mexico Car Crash Lawyer

After you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, you should contact competent legal representation like the Caruso Law Offices, P.C.  You do not have as long as you would like to commence a lawsuit.  Under NM Stat. 37-1-8, you only have three years from the date of your accident to commence a lawsuit.  This is known as the statute of limitations period and it is a time limit on your lawsuit.  If you fail to commence a lawsuit within this time limit, your case will likely be dismissed.

Further, a personal injury lawsuit is very complicated.  The defendant will blame you for the accident or claim you are not as injured as you claim.  The insurance companies will try to trick you into taking less money or not give you what you desire.  Lost wages will pile up and are difficult to claim.  Medical insurance will want to be paid back from car insurance.  The other driver may not even be insured.  If you are on the job, workers’ compensation will add a nightmare.  The defendant may even counter claim and sue YOU for the car accident.

These can effect both your rights to compensation and your wallet.  Additionally, police and law enforcement may investigate the cause of the accident and if you are not represented, you may not be able to present your side well-enough to demonstrate you did not cause the accident.  All of these claims require you to obtain experienced counsel.

Call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. for Legal Representation in your New Mexico Car Crash After a July Fourth Accident

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, call the experienced New Mexico car accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. today by dialing (505) 883-5000 You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.

Independence Day on New Mexico Roads: Be Safe and Call an Albuquerque Personal Injury Lawyer if You Get Hurt

- Mark Caruso

Independence Day is One of the Most Dangerous Days on the Road in New Mexico and Throughout the Country for Motor Vehicle Crashes

Independence Day is about our Nation’s quest for its own sovereign state.  Our ancestors fought hard for the rights we enjoy today and built this country literally on blood, sweat, and tears.  Today is so much more than fireworks, BBQ, and spending time with friends or family.  It is about our country, our military, and our rights.  To that, the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. wishes all a happy and safe Independence Day.

Unfortunately, we know that many Americans will be injured or killed today.  This is simply due to the volume or drivers on the roadways.  Officials have already estimated that there will be a record summer for travel this Independence Day.  This is one of the busiest travel days for the summer and low gas prices spur to the increase in traffic.  With an estimated 44 million people to travel this July Fourth, there will simply be more traffic accidents because there will be more people on the road.  This means more inexperienced drivers, more drivers not knowing where they are going, and more distracted driving.  This also means more drugged or drunk drivers on the road.

Here at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., our Albuquerque personal injury lawyers know that Independence Day is a very dangerous holiday on the roadway for Americans as we have represented those injured or killed in holiday travel.  Large commercial truck accidents, motorcycle crashes, and other vehicle collisions are common.  More people will be injured or killed in motor vehicle accidents today than almost any other day.  If this happens to you or a loved one, call us for a FREE consultation by dialing (505) 883-5000 to learn about your rights to compensation.

Common Causes Independence Day Car Accidents

Large cities like Albuquerque, New Mexico and Las Cruces, New Mexico will see significant spikes in traffic accidents.  Cities like Rio Rancho, Santa Fe, Roswell, Farmington, and other cities will also see an increase in traffic collisions.  Many of these cities are all connected through I-40, I-25, I-10, and other fast-moving highway systems which bring travelers in and out of their respective parties to go home.

Many of these interstates and highways will have many motor vehicle accidents on them.  Most motor vehicle crashes on Independence Day can be completely avoided.  Some common causes include the following:

  • Drunk driving;
  • Drugged driving;
  • Distracted driving with cellphones, radio, or GPS;
  • Inexperienced drivers;
  • Road rage;
  • Excessive speed;
  • Fatigued driving;
  • Distracted driving with family or friends in the car;
  • Unsafe lane changes;
  • Crossing the center line;
  • Improper merges;
  • Rear end collisions;
  • Pulling out of driveways too fast;
  • Failing to avoid dangers during a dust storm; and
  • Many other causes.

Happy Independence Day to All and Safe Travels; Call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. for Albuquerque, Las Cruces, or Any Other Traffic Accidents

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, call the experienced New Mexico car accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. today by dialing (505) 883-5000 You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.

Scary NM Trucking Accident: Driver Falls Asleep While Hauling Radioactive Material

- Mark Caruso

New Mexico Truck Driver Falls Asleep While Driving on I-40: Cargo is Radioactive Material—What Happens if Someone Was Hurt?

It’s a nightmare scenario that was luckily avoided.  News outlets are reporting that a truck driver on Interstate 40 feel asleep while driving.  He was driving a large commercial truck which left the roadway and rolled onto its side on the I-40 eastbound lane near mile marker 132.  The cargo was Cesium 137—a radioactive material.  Luckily no one was hurt, but this could have been catastrophic!

There are several liability issues here that are relevant to a person who could have been hurt in a New Mexico trucking accident.  As experienced New Mexico trucking crash attorneys from Albuquerque, New Mexico, we have handled many trucking collisions on Interstate 40.  If you or a loved one were hurt in an interstate trucking accident, call us for a FREE consultation by dialing (505) 883-5000 to learn your rights today.

Dangerous Cargo and Trucking Accidents in New Mexico

This motor vehicle involved radioactive material.  This is a dangerous cargo.  While it is somewhat uncommon, radioactive material does get transported regularly.  However, there are many more dangerous types of cargo which can be just as deadly to victims.  Most of these are chemicals including acids or gasoline.  These are also very dangerous.

When a victim of a New Mexico trucking accident is injured in the collision, the chemicals and cargo can be just as damaging as the actually impact.  A trucking company and a truck driver are liable for the secondary damages caused by the cargo.

Commonly the cargo will result in a fire.  A fire is secondary to the impact of the trucking crash.  The fire can be just as deadly if not more deadly.  Fires easily kill or seriously injury.  Victims can suffer significant pain and suffering if they are trapped in the mangled wreck and cannot escape a fire which eventually consumes them.  The Caruso Law Offices, P.C., have handled many cases with similar facts and recovered compensation for the victims.

Truckers Who Fall Asleep at the Wheel are Negligent

As unbelievable as it sounds, a truck driver actually fell asleep while driving a truck with radioactive material.  Not only is this negligence as a matter of law under the common law, or judge-made law, but is just sounds reckless.  If anyone was injured due to the crash or the secondary damage caused by radioactive material, victims would absolutely be entitled to compensation.  A jury would be very unsympathetic to a truck driver in this situation.

This accident occurred on an interstate.  Because there are so many states that America’s interstates use, federal regulations apply to cover all states and set a minimum standard.  Driving while sleep impaired is covered in the federal regulations.

Under 49 CFR 392.3, “[n]o driver shall operate a commercial motor vehicle, and a motor carrier shall not require or permit a driver to operate a commercial motor vehicle, while the driver’s ability or alertness is so impaired, or so likely to become impaired, through fatigue, illness, or any other cause, as to make it unsafe for him/her to begin or continue to operate the commercial motor vehicle.”

Thus, victims of a trucking accident who are injured due to a driver who falls asleep, the victims will be entitled to compensation for his or her injuries under the federal regulations and under the common law.

Truck Drivers Who Fall Asleep While Driving on Interstates with Dangerous Cargo are Simply Negligent

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, call the experienced New Mexico truck accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. today by dialing (505) 883-5000 You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.

Lubbock Fatal Crash: Who is Liable in Single Car Crashes in New Mexico

- Mark Caruso

A Lubbock Teenager Was Killed in a Single Car Crash in New Mexico: Who is Liable in These Types of Accidents?

News sources are reporting that a Lubbock, Texas teenager has been killed in a one car crash on US Highway 62/180.  The crash occurred about 26 miles away from Hobbs, New Mexico.  The vehicle was traveling west.  The victim was a 14-year old in the front, passenger seat.  She was not wearing her seatbelt.  The vehicle left the roadway and rolled over.  The victim was ejected from the vehicle and sustained serious personal injuries that resulted in her death.  She died at the scene.  Other occupants were taken to the hospital for treatment.

New Mexico crashes like this are horrible and destroy families.  Here at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., our New Mexico car accident attorneys handle many fatal accidents involving minors, on the highway, and single car vehicles.  We have also represented many victims who live in other states but were injured or killed in New Mexico.  If you or someone you love has had a similar accident, call us today for a FREE consultation to learn your rights to compensation by dialing (505) 883-5000.

Liability in Single Car Crashes

In a New Mexico single car crash there could be several people at fault.  Generally, a passenger in a single car crash is rarely if ever at fault.  Only where there is evidence that the passenger affirmatively caused the crash can the passenger be at fault.  Thus, when a passenger is injured or killed in a single car crash, the passenger likely has a claim against the driver.

Indeed, the driver of the single car will likely be the liable party.  Standard negligence claims may apply, such as distracted driving, drunk driving, drugged driving, falling asleep at the wheel, and excessive speed.

When a driver of a single car crash kills a passenger that driver will be subjected to a wrongful death lawsuit.  Unfortunately, the driver and passenger usually have some relationship such as family, friends, or co-workers.  This makes a wrongful death lawsuit difficult for parties to bring against the driver, but it is very necessary to ensure the family of the victim gets the compensation for the victim’s loss of services, financial support, and pain and suffering.

Car Accidents In New Mexico from Out-of-State Victims

In the news report, the victim was from Lubbock, Texas but the car accident occurred in New Mexico.  There is something known as “conflict of laws” and long arm jurisdiction, or the ability of the court’s in a certain location to hear a case.  This is generally known as jurisdiction.

When the victim is from out-of-state and is injured in New Mexico in a negligence case, a New Mexico court will very likely have jurisdiction.  This means that the victim can bring his or her case in New Mexico because the courts can hear that type of case.

Our experienced New Mexico car accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. have handled many motor vehicle crashes involving victims out of state.  The most common are from trucking accidents involving truckers in Ontario, California and Upland, California.  This is where many truck drivers are from and can result in trucking crashes in New Mexico.  Anytime a victim from out of state is injured in New Mexico, especially in the sad result of a wrongful death, victims should always call a New Mexico attorney first such as us to learn their rights.

Lubbock Texas Victims Should Call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. for Legal Representation in Single Car Accidents

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, call the experienced New Mexico truck accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. today by dialing (505) 883-5000 You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.