Articles Posted in Massachusetts work accident

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Massachusetts passed the Move Over Law in March 2009 in an effort to prevent first responders and emergency rescuers from being hit by a passing vehicle. Motorists are required by law to move over to the next adjacent lane when they see flashing lights or an accident ahead.
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Massachusetts car accident attorneys understand the dangers that police officers, paramedics, firefighters, tow truck drivers and other emergency responders face when they work the scene of an accident. So we remind motorists to give them a break by reducing your speed and moving over to avoid contact with them.

A recent car accident in the Canton/Westwood area sent a police officer to the hospital after being struck by a passing vehicle while he was helping a construction crane move along Route 128. The Milton Patch reports the police cruiser was in the right lane in front of the crane that was moving into position at a construction site. A second cruiser was also driving slowly behind the crane. The accident is under investigation but the preliminary report indicates the motorist passed the first cruiser and the crane but did not see the leading cruiser before cutting in front of the crane and striking the rear of the police car. The police trooper was transported to Milton Hospital but the seriousness of his injuries has yet to be released. No charges will be filed against the car operator until the investigation is complete.

This is one of many recent serious accidents involving police who have been struck by a passing vehicle in the last year. Last March, one state patrol officer suffered serious leg injuries after he was struck by a second vehicle after pulling over a traffic violator. A second officer was hit in Framingham last March when he was riding in his police cruiser. Over the summer, six state troopers in Massachusetts were seriously injured or killed in as many weeks after responding to an emergency situation.

CBS Boston reports that the law is clearly not working with the number of accidents involving emergency responders still occurring in our state. Whether it is blatant disregard of the law or motorists’ just not being aware of the law is still to be determined. A local garage in Attleboro connected to AAA towing service responds to an average of more than 1,000 calls per month. Tow truck drivers fear for their life because they continually see speeding motorists distracted by their cell phones or drinking coffee pass within a foot of where they are standing.

According to the Registry of Motor Vehicles, troopers issued more than 3,100 violations of the Move Over Law during its first year. In 2010, the violations issued were up to 4,263. State police officials claim they don’t have enough manpower to continue enforcing the Move Over law, which explains the drop in citations issued this year which stands at 2,285 from earlier this month.

Violators can face a penalty of up to $100 when they fail to move over. Motorists are reminded to use caution and stay alert for flashing emergency lights, especially when roadways are congested.
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A Boston trucking accident seriously injured the driver of a tractor-trailer after his semi rolled over on the I-495 South ramp to I-95 South on Monday afternoon, the Sun Chronicle reported.

Our Massachusetts workers’ compensation lawyers and Boston car accident attorneys are frequently called to handle serious and fatal trucking accidents.
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The 45-year-old trucker was flown by helicopter to Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. His injuries were described as life-threatening. The ramp has been the scene of numerous truck rollovers in the past. The truck was carrying a load of candles, which did not spill, but the ramp was closed for hours.

Transportation accidents are one of the leading causes of workplace accidents, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Nationwide, more than 40 percent of the fatal work accidents in 2008 were caused by transportation incidents. Such accidents were responsible for 2,130 of the 5,214 fatal on-the-job accidents.

But those at the greatest risk of being seriously or fatally injured in a trucking accident are other motorists on the road. Passenger vehicles do not stand a chance in an accident with a large truck or other commercial vehicle. Nationwide, one out of every nine traffic fatalities involves a large truck, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

In 2008, a total of 4,229 motorists were killed and more than 90,000 were injured in accidents with large trucks. Of those, only 677 fatalities and 23,000 injuries occurred to truck occupants. The vast majority of injuries occurred to the occupants of other vehicles or to bicyclists or pedestrians.

Consulting with a Boston auto accident lawyer with the knowledge and experience to handle serious and fatal accidents involving large trucks is critical to protecting your rights and the financial well-being of you and your family. Such cases are often complex and involve multiple victims and accidents claims, in-state and out-of-state trucking companies, drivers and insurance companies, and state and federal trucking regulations.
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He would have turned 58 on Sept. 16, the Boston Globe reports. Instead, the father of two boys who immigrated here from Russia many years ago for a chance at a better life leaves behind a mourning wife, two sons.

The inspector for Massachusetts Department of Transportation was struck and killed late Tuesday night while checking pavement temperatures at a Framingham construction zone. Authorities say an out-of-state driver was under the influence of alcohol at the time of the fatal Massachusetts construction accident.
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After the accident, both the driver and the passenger fled their vehicle but were chased and caught by D&R Paving construction workers as the victim lay bleeding from a head injury in the breakdown lane. Both men, each of whom have a string of driving offenses in Massachusetts, Maine and Vermont, have been charged with OUI and leaving the scene of an accident with personal injury. The primary driver, a 29-year-old transient construction worker from Maine, was also charged with motor vehicle homicide.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that in 2008 and 2009, there were 594 workers killed nationwide in transportation incidents where an employee was struck by a vehicle. In the field of highway, street and bridge construction, in 2009, there were 71 worker fatalities, 31 caused by a worker being struck by a vehicle while on the job. The National Highway Traffic Safety Department reports there were 364 alcohol-related fatal Massachusetts car accidents in 2009.
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Yet another Massachusetts State Trooper has been injured in a Boston car accident after being struck by an alleged drunk driver during a traffic stop, the Examiner reported.

Our Boston injury lawyers are not sure what it’s going to take to keep our rescue workers and road construction workers from being seriously injured or killed in Massachusetts work accidents. But putting some real teeth into the state’s “Move Over” law would be a good place to start. The state just enacted its current law, which provides for a fine of up to $100 for vehicles that fail to move over or slow down for stopped emergency vehicles with activated lights.

In comparison, Illinois’ Move Over Law comes with a fine of up to $10,000 and a two year license suspension — the first 90 days is a mandatory suspension for a property damage accident.

In this most recent incident, an alleged drunk driving struck the trooper’s car early Saturday morning while the trooper was conducting a traffic stop in the breakdown lane of Route 25 in Taunton.

The Trooper had pulled over a Chrysler Sebring for a driving violation when the Volkswagen Jetta slammed into his cruiser. The trooper was trapped in the car as a result of the accident. The 24-year-old driver of the Jetta was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, negligent operation of a motor vehicle and failure to move over for an emergency vehicle.

Last month, Sgt. Douglas Weddleton was killed by an alleged drunk driver in Mansfield, while conducting a traffic stop on another accused drunk driver.

A third incident involved a trooper who was struck and injured by a motorist in Peabody while he was outside his vehicle conducting a traffic stop. A fourth trooper was injured after being hit while conducting a traffic stop in Cambridge.

The incidents have the Boston Examiner suggesting authorities begin raising awareness by conducting enforcement efforts that would stage a mock traffic stop at the side of the road while additional troopers stopped motorists not complying with the state’s Move Over law.
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