Two people were killed on Tuesday, February 16th in what appears to be a freak accident in Palm Coast, Florida, where a man and woman were run over by a dump truck. It happened at a construction site on Forest Grove Driver and Palm Harbor Parkway where moments before the accident, the dump truck driver had stopped to help the victims.
Troopers say the two victims Kevin Walsh, 29, and Jessica Darby, 22, were friends. Walsh had gotten his pick-up truck stuck in the soft dirt at the construction site as he attempted to cross it and asked Darby, who was 8 months pregnant, and her fiancé to come help him get it out. After many attempts, the three were unable to push the truck out. 60-year-old Paul Beagen was apparently passing by the area and offered to help the three pull the truck out with his dump truck, but was also unable to free the pick-up. As he backed up to leave, he did not see the victims in his path and ran over Walsh and Darby, killing them both instantly. Beagen drove away from the scene, apparently unaware he had hit anyone and he was stopped less than a mile down the road. Florida Highway Patrol says charges are still pending and the case is still under investigation.
It goes without saying, this is an example of devastating “freak” accident. But the reality is that “freak” accidents aren’t as uncommon as many believe, in fact, injuries and fatalities on construction sites happen all the time in Central Florida. Dump trucks, tow trucks, cranes, and other large construction equipment are among some of the most deadly vehicles on the road, and poor visibility unfortunately make them one of the most dangerous vehicles to operate. Dump trucks and other construction vehicle accident cases are complicated because often the driver isn’t the only one liable for the accident.
Dump trucks are usually owned by construction companies, trucking services, or even by government agencies that use the trucks to perform work for the public and the person or organization that owns the truck may be partially or fully liable for the accident. Even in the event that a driver of a construction vehicle caused an accident because they were negligent, the owner of the truck could still be held liable for the collision if the truck was not properly serviced/maintained or they did not provide adequate safety training for the driver.
A successful personal injury or wrongful death attorney can help you uncover who is truly responsible for your injuries or losses following a construction accident. This includes compensation for medical expenses, rehabilitative care, lost time at work, loss of future earning potential, pain and suffering, emotional distress, and for the family members of fatal accidents, funeral expenses, mental anguish, and loss of future income. Because dump trucks are such large vehicles and are often carrying heavy loads, the injuries and losses may be significant and it is imperative victims and their family members take steps to get the funds they need to recover for their losses.
If you or a family member was killed or injured on a construction site, call the Law Offices of James O. Cunningham P.A. today. Our personal injury and wrongful death attorneys have been representing victims and their families affected by construction related accidents for more than 30 years, and we can help you get the compensation your need and deserve. Call us today at 877-FL-INJURY (877-354-6587) for more information.
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
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