Durham, NH — February 9, 2018, Meredith Hamel, Sotheada Ban, Richard Bernier, and four others were injured following an accident where an 18-wheeler ran a red light.

Durham Police officials reported that the accident happened at around 7:00 a.m. at the intersection of Route 4 and Madbury Road.

Preliminary reports were vague about what exactly happened in the accident. They claim that an 18-wheeler ran a red light at the intersection, crashing with a Jeep Wrangler, a Toyota Camry, and a Chevy Traverse.

The drivers of those vehicles, along with 4 passengers from the Chevy, were all taken to hospitals for treatment. 47-year-old Hamel, the driver of the Jeep, sustained critical injuries. The other two drivers, 53-year-old Ban and 51-year-old Bernier, have since been released.

Police say the truck driver will likely face a citation for running the red light. Further details have not yet been reported.

Map of the Area

Commentary

In all likelihood, people will read these reports, see the truck facing a citation for running the red light, and assume the trucking company will automatically take responsibility for the accident. I’ve litigated hundreds of truck accidents over the years, and I have yet to encounter a trucking company–citations or not–accept full responsibility for an accident without putting up a fight. The simple fact of the matter is trucking companies have a lot to lose in a serious accident, so they have teams of professionals dedicated to minimizing that loss as much as possible. Victims and families unprepared to counter these efforts can easily find themselves cheated out of the justice they deserve.

Even in cases where a driver is charged or cited, that doesn’t guarantee they’ll be held accountable under civil law. A civil lawsuit still requires victims and families to seek out tangible evidence to support their side of the story. That evidence then must be compiled in a professional and convincing manner effective enough to convince a jury of normal citizens to hold the trucking company accountable. Without those efforts, a trucking company defense lawyer–with years of experience fighting these kinds of claims–can easily steer the ship and sway opinions to their favor.

Ultimately the point I’m trying to make here is that no matter how clear the fact pattern seems, there is no such thing as automatic fault. Those affected by an accident must take action to prove what caused the accident. Holding a trucking company accountable has significant challenges, and those seeking to hold one responsible must go to great lengths to make sure their side of the story is told.

–Grossman Law Offices

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Recent Comments to the Blog

Jason is back to work and is now playing Sled Hockey and wheelchair rugby!! Jason is the strongest and most amazing man! He may nly have 1/2 a leg, but that is ALL he is lacking!! Thanks to prayer and GOD and awsome first responders and Baylor doctors. Jason's wife, Sheila
— Sheila
I'm a former employee. I had brought up this exact scenario and suggested a maintenance procedure that would eliminate the possibility of this type injury. Obviously my warning went unheeded.
— Tophat
I was actually a couple cars back from this wreck, one of the first on the scene, and helped administer CPR on the victims. The truck driver was going way too fast, but it was actually his trailer that swung around and hit the suv, the semi-truck ended in the median.
— Leif Burton
I appreciate how you've commentated on this tragedy--informative, with questions, but not hurtful. I live within 30 mins of this crash site, and I am appalled at the entire situation :(. I can't even begin to understand what could have happened to make this come to fruition, but I will be keeping up with it so I can learn what investigations bring to light about how something awful like this could happen. Rest in peace, Thomas, Carolyn and Carolyn...
— Summer
I am Anthony Siffords daughter. im 13 and i miss my dad i just wanted everyone to know that he is in a better place now and i would to thank everyone for the support. i miss my dad but it was amazing to see how many people had been toughed by my dad god bless thanks for everything...
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I am Rodney Palmer's sister-inlaw. I am amazed and grateful for all the heartfelt wishes and support for our family... It is difficult indeed to put our thoughts into words, but we very much appreciate your kind and helpful words at a time when these things mean so much. Losing someone as special as Rodney has been tough, but knowing the he has touched so many people's lives keeps my sister's strengthens our family.
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A lot of people say smack about lawyers, but I want to say that I'm glad there is a way that people who are wronged by corporate neglect can get justice and force change. We are living in a world where corporations and govt care less than ever about common people, and I support your work. I hope I will never need your services.
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My friend Michael was the one who got hit by this train. This is the ONLY article I can find on it!! How is that possible? It happened almost 5 days ago! Thank you for actually caring about us "no name" people. I hope when more information comes in you will post it as soon as you can. Thank you again!! God bless you
— Leslie
Tony was the step Grant father and it's been hard for the whole family but we know he is in a better place now. It's nice to know that people are rasing awareness with my grandfathers story. Thanks, family and friends of Tony Wray.
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Thank you for posting these accident articles on your site. At the company that I work for, e deal with monitoring construction activity and work around trenches and all sorts of construction equipment/vehicles. I sometimes wonder if construction companies have enough safety training to inform employees of how to protect themselves while on the job.
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I'd like to thank you for giving my cousin's death some type of recognition and letting our family know he is not a lost cause. Thank you <3
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