Before taking commercial trucks onto Missouri roads, operators must do safety checks. There are many things that can go wrong on big rigs on the roadway, particularly when they are carrying heavy loads. If malfunctions on trucks are not addressed correctly and in a timely manner, severe injuries in vehicle or pedestrian accidents may occur. Civil claims for financial relief may arise from a recent incident that caused serious personal injury to two pedestrians after they were struck by an unsecured truck wheel in Lebanon.
According to the Missouri Highway Patrol, a semi truck operator was on his way back to Lebanon after having work done on the wheels of his rig in Vegas. Witnesses saw two wheels flying off the semi and bouncing across the Interstate before also clearing the fence of a car dealership. The business owner and his wife were both struck by one of the wheels. It was reported that a rim and tire of a big rig weighs approximately 175 pounds.
According to the staff at the business next door, the man was speaking to a customer outside when his wife came to give him a goodbye kiss; that's when they were struck by the tire. The customer was not injured, but both the husband and his wife reportedly suffered serious injuries, including internal injuries and fractured bones. The wife was flown to a hospital while her husband was rushed by ambulance to another medical facility.
While the reason for the wheels becoming dislodged from the truck is yet to be determined, the fact that this happened almost immediately after repairs to the wheels were carried out at a maintenance shop suggests negligence by the repair shop. Victims of pedestrian accidents may have viable personal injury claims if negligence. In this case, the defendants in a civil case would likely be the operator of the semi, his employer or other owner of the truck and the business at which the repairs on the wheels were carried out. A Missouri judge may consider the entry of a judgment for monetary restitution of all documented financial and emotional losses once liability has been established by appropriate proof.
Source: kspr.com, "Freak accident sends couple to ICU", Jonathan Wahl, Oct. 15, 2015