On the afternoon of Friday, November 25th, Phoenix motorcyclist Brian James Reader was killed when he drove into the back of a 2003 Chevrolet pickup truck on an Interstate 17 onramp at Cactus Road. According to the Department of Public Safety, the 27 year-old motorcyclist was speeding and changing lanes before the accident.
The accident threw Reader off his motorcycle and under the truck. He was declared dead at a trauma center.
Here’s the strange thing about this situation – Reader ran into a truck that was disabled and abandoned in the traffic lane! This raises many questions regarding who is responsible for the accident and Reader’s death.
Motorcyclists have an obligation not to run into stationary objects. A disabled Chevrolet pickup trucks is something that you wouldn’t expect to see on a freeway onramp; however it is large enough that it would be hard not to see it.
Likewise, drivers have obligations to maintain their vehicles so that they do not create hazards by having breakdowns. However, sometimes vehicles breakdown with no warning and the only option the driver has is to leave their vehicle and seek assistance. In these situations, the driver should pull off the road and turn on the hazard lights so that other drivers know that the vehicle is disabled.
In this situation, there are many unknowns. We don’t know if the onramp is wide enough for the driver to pull their truck off the road or if the truck broke down in the traffic lane, making it impossible to move it. We also do not know how long the driver left the truck in the traffic lane and if that length of time could have been shortened, which might have prevented the accident from occurring.
There will likely be an investigation into the causes of the accident and from that there may be civil lawsuit(s) where the parties try to collect payment for their damages.
If you have been injured or lost a loved one in a motorcycle accident, please contact the Phoenix personal injury lawyers at the personal injury law firm Oracle Law Group today.