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Distracted truck driver blamed in death of Arizona officer

A 14-year veteran of the Department of Public Safety was killed in southwestern Arizona when a truck crashed into the vehicles of various responders. The responders were on Interstate 8 to provide assistance when the tanker truck slammed into the parked patrol car operated by the deceased officer and into several other vehicles as well.

It is claimed that the truck driver was distracted at the time that the truck accident occurred. Family members of the police officer were left to ponder why the truck driver was allowed to use his phone to surf the web while reportedly driving his vehicle at high speeds.

The tanker truck driver is reported to be facing 20 felony charges. One such charge would include second-degree murder. It is also claimed that the truck driver violated federal regulations while using the cellphone and driving.

A video taken by the dash camera showed the truck driver looking at his cellphone at around the time of the crash. Phone records also reveal he may have been looking at Facebook and photos of women at the time the accident occurred.

The family members plan on bringing a lawsuit against both the truck driver and the company for which he worked. The attorney representing the family mentioned how more and more times he is seeing instances where texting and driving is taking place.

Because of the size of the vehicle, truck accidents often turn out to be catastrophic. Trucks are difficult enough to operate without the driver already being distracted.

When attorneys take on these sorts of cases it is in hopes of compensating victims for such crashes. These cases also serve another purpose as well. When suing the company that employs these drivers, these sorts of lawsuits will remind employers that every precaution needs to be taken to make certain truck drivers are operating their vehicles safely.

Source: ABC 15, “Family of DPS officer killed in I-8 crash suing big rig driver, truck company,” Dec. 12, 2013

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