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Orlando Rider Dies in Semi-Truck Wreck

Oldham & Smith Jan. 15, 2018

The 22-year-old rider may have been speeding when he collided with a large truck attempting a left turn against traffic.

Jeon Acevedo was riding northbound on Orange Avenue when he hit a semi-truck that was turning into a business on Martin Brower Road. Even though he was wearing a helmet, Mr. Acevedo died almost instantly, according to first responders.

The truck driver, who was not named and not injured, may face charges following the crash.

Some Facts About Motorcycle Crashes in Orlando

Riders are roughly twenty-seven times more likely to die in vehicle collisions than vehicle occupants because riders are almost completely exposed to danger in these instances. Some of the serious injuries include:

  • Head Injuries: Even if the rider is wearing a helmet, the jarring motion often causes a head injury. It’s possible to scramble the brain without breaking the skull, just like it’s possible to scramble an egg without breaking the shell.

  • Blood Loss: Exsanguination is often the most serious injury in motorcycle and other vehicle wrecks. Due to external and internal injuries, it is not unusual for victims to lose up to a third of their blood before first responders arrive to stabilize them.

  • Broken Bones: The force of the collision usually throws riders off their bikes. After they fly through the air and land hard on the ground, their bones may be almost completely crushed. These injuries usually require extensive surgical correction and long-term physical therapy.

Lack of visibility is a significant issue in these wrecks, especially when the tortfeasor (negligent driver) sits very high up and has problems seeing small motorcycles. But that is not an excuse for negligence. In fact, the opposite is true, and such drivers have a duty to keep an even sharper lookout for motorcycle riders.

Third Party Liability in Florida

In wrongful death and other catastrophic injury cases, the tortfeasor sometimes does not have sufficient insurance coverage to fully compensate the victim/plaintiff, because Florida has one of the lowest auto insurance minimums in the country.

Respond at superior (let the master answer) is one of the most common vicarious liability theories in Florida. The court may force the tortfeasor’s employer to pay some or all of the victim/plaintiff’s damages if:

  • Employee: Almost all truck drivers, even if they are independent contractors or owner-operators, are employees of the truck owner for negligence purposes. The only requirement is that the truck owner controlled at least some aspect of the tortfeasor’s behavior, such as hours of work or the truck’s destination.

  • The scope of Employment: Similarly, any act that benefits the employer in any way falls within the scope of employment. That would even include driving an empty tractor-trailer into a warehouse.

  • Foreseeable: A car crash is a foreseeable result of driving a truck, but a medical mistake, such as a surgeon operating on the wrong leg after a crash, is not foreseeable.

Typically, Florida judges divide damages between multiple tortfeasors based on their percentage of fault. Insurance company lawyers could reduce that percentage through such loopholes as the contributory negligence defense, which requires the jury to divide liability for damages if both the victim and tortfeasor were partially at fault for the crash.

Count on Experienced Attorneys

Motorcycle riders risk serious injury every time they go out. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer in Orlando, contact Oldham & Smith today, because you have a limited amount of time to act.