Albuquerque Trucking Accident Lawyer Shares News: Inclement Weather Causes I-40 Truck Accidents in New Mexico
Last week’s snowfall in the Albuquerque metro area brought havoc on our roadways. Unfortunately, it also brought personal injuries. According to news reports, snow last week resulted in 10 semi tractor trailer accidents including a truck pileup on I-40. Part of I-40’s eastbound lanes near Tijeras Canyon were shut down. The icy and slick roadway surface was the cause of the multiple accidents and it resulted in significant damage to multiple tractor trailers and injuries to two individuals. Traffic was backed up for miles and it looks crews an extended period of time to clear up the disabled and damaged vehicles. When inclement weather causes I-40 semi truck accidents in New Mexico, there could be liability.
This is because semi truck accidents in New Mexico could cause serious personal injuries or catastrophic damages. This includes wrongful death of innocent people. With slick roadway conditions, truck drivers could be negligent for causing semi tractor truck pileups even if the weather was snowing, icy, or a squall. This is because all motorists must exercise reasonable care in the use or operation of their available and maintain and safe speed.
New Mexico Law Could Impose Liability
Even if a truck driver is driving below the speed limit, he or she could still be liable for causing a serious trucking accident in New Mexico during icy or snowy conditions. This is because New Mexico law provides under NM Stat. section 66-7-301 (B) (1) that “[i]n every event, speed shall be so controlled by the driver as may be necessary to avoid colliding with a person, vehicle or other conveyance on or entering the highway.” If the weather conditions are dangerous and a truck driver cannot maintain a slow and safe speed, that could result in the truck driving losing control and causing a collision doing serious personal injuries to an innocent person.
A truck driver that drives during icy or snowy weather can causes this type of serious personal injury accident could be liable under New Mexico law for violating this section of law. That is because of the doctrine called negligence per se which allows a victim to establish liability against a defendant for violating a statute that was meant to protect the victim.
FMCSA Regulations Could Also Impose Liability
In addition to New Mexico law, all drivers of commercial vehicles must comply with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations. There are regulations specifically tailored to inclement weather conditions. For instance, 49 CFR section 392.14 requires that “[e]xtreme caution in the operation of a commercial motor vehicle shall be exercised when hazardous conditions, such as those caused by snow, ice, sleet, fog, mist, rain, dust, or smoke, adversely affect visibility or traction.” If a truck driver does not believe that safe operation can be continued during these conditions, the FMCSA regulations require a truck driver to STOP and wait until movement can be safe again.
If a truck driver violates this FMCSA regulation, it is evidence of negligence that a victim can use against a defendant in court. It is not as strong as a violation of a statute that automatically provides liability, it is still very strong in front of a jury.
Ask the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. For Help if You Were Injured in a Trucking Accident in NM: Inclement Weather Causes I-40 Semi Truck Accidents
When inclement weather causes I-40 semi truck accidents in New Mexico, like the news articles above, it can result in serious personal injuries to innocent victims. Liability can be proven with use of the statutory violations. In fact, many times the statutes can be used to establish liability automatically against a truck driver or trucking company. Not just in snow or ice, but also in dust storms which are more common in New Mexico.
If you or a loved one have been seriously injured in a New Mexico 18 wheeler wreck, please call to schedule your FREE appointment with our lawyers at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. by dialing (505) 308-0427.
We handle causes throughout New Mexico, including Las Cruces, Santa Fe, Roswell, Cuervo, Rio Rancho, Clovis, Farmington, Hobbs, Albuquerque where our office is located, and anywhere else throughout New Mexico. Please call to schedule for FREE appointment by dialing (505) 308-0427 or contact us through our website’s easy to use and convenient contact box available here.