Gilmer County Tour Bus Crash Investigation Will be Complex

Our injury lawyers are representing the family of one of the victim in the Greatime Getaways tour bus that collided with a tractor trailer owned by Polcon Tile & Terrazo on October 13, 2016 in Gilmer County, Georgia.  We are looking to talk to any witnesses or other individuals with information about the accident to assist in our investigation.
The accident occurred on Georgia Highway 515  and preliminary reports suggest that the tractor trailer driver was at fault.  We understand the tractor trailer was traveling on Whitestone Road and attempted to take a left onto 515 southbound.  In doing so, the tractor trailer cut across the 515 northbound lanes and blocked the lane in which the tour bus was traveling, which caused the tour bus to collide with the back end of the tractor trailer.  The collision killed the tour bus driver and injuring 43 passengers.
Left turns are one of the most dangerous maneuvers a tractor trailer can make.  This is even more true when the left turn is made across multiple lane highways.  Both federal and state laws, as well as numerous training manuals and industry policies, govern the process by which left turns are safely made.  One of the hazardous conditions involved in a tractor trailer left turn is the obvious fact that it takes a lot more time to clear a tractor trailer through an intersection than it does the average vehicle.  This is a combination of the added time it takes a heavy tractor trailer to start moving from a complete stop as well as the added time it takes for the lengthy trailer to pass through the intersection. Tractor trailer driver must undergo extensive training and remain highly alert to properly gauge whether the entire tractor trailer will be able to clear the roadway safely and timely without impeding oncoming traffic.
There are a lot of factors that go into the investigation of a left turn accident, and really any accident, involving a tractor trailer.  Here are a few of the many issues that we’ll be investigating:
  1. Whether the tractor trailer driver had the required training and experience to drive this particular tractor trailer and make this left turn.
  2. Whether alcohol, medications, or other drugs may have inhibited the tractor trailer driver’s judgment and ability to safely make the turn.
  3. Whether poor eye sight and/or a failure to wear corrective lens led to his inability to see the approaching bus.
  4. Whether the tractor trailer driver was distracted by things such as a cellphone, loud radio, or other.
  5. Whether the tractor trailer driver had been driving long hours prior to the accident that led to his being fatigued which hampered his judgment and/or ability to gauge the distance of the bus.
  6. We’ll also be looking into the tractor trailer driver’s site line (distance at which the driver could first see the approaching bus) and the speed at which the bus was traveling when approaching the intersection and at the time of the actual collision.
  7. Whether the bus driver could have avoided the collision.
This information, along with other areas w
e are investigating, will be obtained through accident reconstruction experts, testimony of the tractor trailer driver and representatives of the tractor trailer company, and documents produced by the company during litigation.  But we also can get very helpful information from those who witnessed the accident, whether on the bus or in the general area.
If you or anyone you know witnessed the crash, please contact our offices at the number above so that the right result can be achieved and justice can be done.
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