After a year-long study, the National Transportation Safety Board last year found that the faulty and confusing signs which caused the deadly bus crash at I-75 at Northside Drive in Atlanta have been replaced by the State of Georgia. As one safety expert put it, the former confusing road signs were “potentially a killer.” Based on the tragic wrecks that have occurred within the Atlanta City limits at this junction of the interstate, that would be an understatement.
In addition to replacing the signs, the State of Georgia has settled with the victims and their families for a total of $3 million, which is the maximum exposure for a single accident that the State of Georgia (due to sovereign immunity, which the state and other governmental entities enjoy in varying degrees) has in these situations. In the deadly crash, the driver of a charter bus carrying a college baseball team mistook the exit sign for the I-75 through way and exited the highway ramp at highway speed. Not realizing that the bus was now on the exit ramp, the bus driver continued through the exit ramp, rammed a concrete wall, jumped the bridge and landed back onto I-75. The crash caused 5 deaths and numerous other severe injuries.
This is yet another example of a single-vehicle accident which, at first blush would lead many injured people to believe that they did not have a case. However, as we have discussed in the past, despite great odds, many single vehicle accidents have resulted in multi-million dollar settlement or verdicts. The key to pursuing these cases is to involve an experienced auto accident lawyer early so that a proper investigation can be conducted. Many times, the real cause of the wreck is not apparent at the scene and the police investigation does not always uncover all of the factors and parties that caused or substantially contributed to the wreck. That is why a thorough investigation (other than the initial police report or initial investigation by an accident re-constructionist) should be conducted as soon as possible. This should include, but is not limited to, which vehicles were involved in the wreck, the identify of all drivers, whether any drugs or alcohol contributed to the wreck or were found in any of the vehicles, the service log of any truckers involved to determine if they were lawfully driving at the time of the wreck or whether they were fatigued and should not have been on the road, any witnesses, and any other factors that might help determine responsible parties for the wreck.
Attorney Robert J. Fleming has been handling wrongful death cases, bus accidents, car accident cases and construction site injury cases for individuals and families who have been harmed, injured or died as a result of the carelessness or negligence of another for more than 20 years in and around Atlanta, Georgia and its surrounding areas, including Alpharetta, Austell, Avondale Estates, Chamblee, College Park, Conyers, Duluth, Decatur, Doraville, Hapeville, Johns Creek, Jonesboro, Lawrenceville, Norcross, Peachtree City, Riverdale, Roswell, Sandy Springs, Stone Mountain, and Smyrna. If you have been seriously injured in a car accident and would like quality legal representation, contact Robert J. Fleming directly on (404) 525-5150 or contact us online.