Louisiana Stationary Vehicle Crashes: Can I Claim Compensation for Injuries/Death?

August 5, 2022 General

Louisiana Stationary Vehicle Crashes: Can I Claim Compensation for Injuries/Death?

Making insurance claims and recovering money damages for crashes involving a stationary vehicle can be difficult, but not impossible. It depends on many facts unique to the circumstances of the case.

For example, as reported here, a man died in a single-vehicle crash in early January 2022 when the ATV he was riding crashed into an abandoned big-rig trailer truck that was parked partially on the shoulder and partially in the grass along a Louisiana highway. Per the report, the ATV was being driven by a “juvenile” — likely a teenager — who was thrown from the ATV when the crash occurred. The driver survived. The other man — a passenger — was also ejected, but died a couple of days later at a local hospital from injuries sustained in the crash. According to the report, law enforcement officials did not believe that speed or impairment were factors that led to the crash.

Looking at the possible claims of the man who was killed, the deceased man’s estate might have insurance and/or litigation claims against the driver of the ATV and, potentially, against the owner of the parked trailer. For either, the claims by the decedent’s estate would be based on a survival action. The survival action claims would be for medical bills and costs from the time of the crash to the time of death. Money damages might also be claimed for pain and suffering, lost wages, and other damages experienced during that short period of time. In addition, the family of the deceased man might be able to sue for wrongful death. The wrongful death claims by family members would be for loss of support, loss of companionship, and similar types of losses.

To recover compensation against the driver of the ATV (or, more accurately, against the parents of the teenager) or against the owner of the parked trailer, negligence would have to be proven. In Louisiana, proving negligence involves providing evidence showing four legal elements — duty, breach of duty, causation, and resulting injury/death.

For the driver, likely, the duty that was breached involved the general duty that all drivers owe to others to be careful and watchful and to drive with due caution while using the roads and highways in Louisiana. For the owners of the trailer, there might be a number of duties that were breached. Vehicle owners have a duty to not unreasonably block and obstruct the roads and highways. Facts that might be relevant include how long the trailer had been parked there, whether warning cones or devices had been deployed, and whether the trailer’s hazard lights were on and blinking.

As can be seen, personal injury cases, survival actions, and wrongful death claims are legally and factually complex. If you have been injured in a crash — even one involving a stationary vehicle — you should contact experienced Louisiana personal injury lawyers to explore options and for legal advice about whether you have a potential claim for recovery of compensation.

Our Attorneys Can Help

For more information, contact the Louisiana personal injury lawyers at Mansfield, Melancon, Cranmer & Dick LLC. We have a proven track record of success handling many types of Louisiana personal injury cases including car accidents, boating accidents, motorcycle accidents, premises liability accidents, and cases involving nursing care facility abuse/neglect. Contact us by calling one of our offices: New Orleans at (504) 500-1108, Baton Rouge at (225) 612-0800, or Lafayette at (337) 409-0003. You can also request a free consultation by using our “Contact Us” page.