20 Injured and Two Dead in 18-Wheeler Crash with Mount Pleasant School Bus
A “Root Cause” analysis of the trucking company and its driver could answer a lot of questions.
As many of you know, an out-of-control 18-wheeler delivered a catastrophic blow to the Mount Pleasant Independent School District and the entire Mount Pleasant community late Thursday evening.
A northbound 18-wheeler traveling on Highway 271 drove left of center into a southbound Mount Pleasant ISD school bus. The driver of the school bus swerved to avoid a head-on collision, but the 18-wheeler still struck the bus in the midsection causing the bus to roll onto its side. Next the 18-wheeler struck a southbound passenger car following the school bus.
The passengers on the school bus included the boys’ track team and coaches. The car traveling behind the school bus was being driven by Angelica Beard, an assistant track coach.
Both Angelica Beard and the driver of the 18-wheeler Bradley Farmer of Bogard, Missouri, were fatally injured. Additionally, 20 passengers on the bus were injured.
A “Root Cause” Expert Analysis Is Needed
In cases like this, it’s important to determine the “root cause” of the crash. Some “root cause” questions are: 1) Was the truck driver fatigued? 2) Was the truck driver distracted? or 3) Did the truck’s equipment fail?
A “root cause” analysis determines not only what happened, but why it happened. The police investigation is typically limited to what happened. Rarely does law-enforcement determine exactly why a crash occurred.
When a “root cause” analysis is properly performed through a legal team working with industry experts, a determination can be made as to not only what happened, but why it happened.
One thing that should be done immediately is to download data from the truck’s event recorder or “black box.” Early investigation should also include an audit of the truck driver’s log books, cell phone records, and the truck’s maintenance records.
These things and more should be done before evidence is lost. In other words, before it is too late.
Help Make the Roads Safer
When the full truth is understood and addressed, it will help make the roads safer for everyone.
Attorney Dan Linebaugh is the author of the book, 9 Costly Mistakes that People Make Following an
18-Wheeler Crash, and is a frequent lecturer regarding truck litigation. Mr. Linebaugh is Board Certified as a Specialist in Personal Injury Trial Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization and has been inducted into the Million Dollar and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum as a life member.