Question: My wife was riding her bicycle in the bike lane parallel to a garbage truck. The garbage truck driver swerved and hit her. The police found an open cell phone on the floor of the truck. My wife is in intensive care at the hospital. She has a severe, unstable pelvic fracture. Some bone punctured a kidney.  Can an attorney help us find out if the driver was using his cell phone at the time of the accident?

Answer by Attorney Eric Hageman: Yes, an attorney can help you and your wife find out if the garbage truck driver was using his cell phone at the time of the accident. I just handled a case very similar to yours where the cell phone records showed that a semi truck driver was talking on his cell phone at the time of the accident. In that case, the state patrol obtained a search warrant to obtain the driver’s phone records.  It sounds like that has not happened in your case, but I can help you find out. If not, we can obtain those records through other legal channels.

In most cases it is illegal for a commercial truck driver to use a cell phone while driving. In every case it is negligence, and possibly gross negligence. If I can prove gross negligence, your wife would have the right to seek “punitive damages”, an amount of money significant enough to punish a wrongdoer. This is in addition to “compensatory damages”, which includes hospital and other medical costs, lost income, pain and suffering, emotional distress, disability, disfigurement and loss of quality of life. A husband often also can sue for loss of time with his wife and other damages.

In most garbage truck accident cases where the driver is at fault, both the garbage truck driver and the trash collection company may be sued. Our law firm has successfully handled many garbage truck accident personal injury and wrongful death cases.

Your wife’s injuries are serious. It is extremely important that any lawsuit against the driver and trash collection company seek compensation for expected future pain and suffering, medical care and wage loss. We hire experts in the medical field to determine what is expected and how much compensation to seek.

You can talk with me for free by submitting our free consultation form or by calling 1-888-377-8900 (toll free). Ask for Eric.  If you want to contact me after business hours or during the weekend, you should submit the free consultation form, and I will respond as quickly as possible. In many cases, it is within the hour.