Stalled Commercial Truck Causes Major Accident

    This case involves a car accident on a major highway with three different parties. The third party defendant was a company with a driver who was driving on the highway. While on the road, his truck hit a squirrel and stalled out. The car behind the truck’s driver, which belonged to the plaintiff, veered off to the side and avoided a collision with the third party defendant’s truck. The car behind him, which belonged to the defendant, was unable to avoid the plaintiff and hit him, causing injuries. The third party defendant’s driver claimed that he is unable to identify which truck he was driving at that time. This prevented the plaintiff from being able to collect information about the vehicle and its maintenance history. The third party defendant was a company that transports goods for a retail store. The driver for the third party defendant claimed that no truck had the stalling issue before or since this incident.

    Question(s) For Expert Witness

    • 1. How could the maintenance issues with the commercial vehicle be discovered?

    Expert Witness Response E-000398

    A small animal will not cause the engine to stall out. The maintenance records are important, as they will reflect a good or bad pattern. If no records, there probably was no maintenance. Given the problem that was reported, however, a direct examination would be the best way to discover any problems with the truck. I have extensive training in this field, serving as a teacher in automotive maintenance, with numerous publications on the subject.

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