Late on the night of Saturday, November 14, 2020, an accident involving a FedEx tractor-trailer killed Todd Allen Glessner, age 58. According to the Bibb County Sheriff’s Office, Glessner was left stranded in his car in the middle of I-475 in Macon when a tire from an RV hit his car near the Eisenhower Parkway exit.
Glessner’s car was stuck and unmoveable in the middle of the interstate when a FedEx tractor-trailer came up behind his car and rear-ended it. Authorities pronounced him dead on the scene, and an investigation is still underway.
What to do following a truck accident
If you or a loved one are involved in a truck accident, it’s important to first make sure that everyone involved is okay. If there are any serious injuries, dial 911 immediately and wait for emergency first responders. If your car is stranded in the middle of the highway and you’re able to move, get out of the car quickly and carefully get safety on the side of the road.
If you’re in a safe place when the accident occurs, the following is a step-by-step process of what you can do while you wait for the authorities.
- Gather evidence. Most modern mobile phones are equipped with built-in cameras that you can use to take photos and video of the accident scene. Remember to include any and all damage to the truck and other vehicles involved, as well as the accident from multiple angles. If there are any witnesses, ask them for their contact information.
- Exchange insurance information. Once you and the other driver (or drivers) have finished gathering evidence, it’s important to exchange insurance and contact information.
- Read the police report. Once the authorities have arrived and finished investigating, they will ask you to give a statement. Make sure everything on the copy of the report they give you is correctly documented.
- Seek medical care. Even if it appears as though you’ve only suffered from minor cuts or bruises, there may be internal injuries you aren’t aware of such as whiplash or a concussion. Consider letting the ambulance take you to the emergency room or having a family member or friend pick you up and take you.
Who’s liable for truck accident damages?
When drivers are hurt or killed in auto accidents while “on the job,” they are generally covered under Georgia workers’ compensation. This is a no-fault system, which means your employer must offer you workers’ compensation benefits regardless of who’s responsible for the accident.
As long as an employee was driving “within the scope” of their job when the accident occurred, an employer can be held liable for their employee’s negligent behavior.
So in the case of the truck accident on I-475, the FedEx tractor-trailer driver is likely covered by workers’ compensation if he or she was injured in the wreck.
But what about Todd Allen Glessner, the Warner Robins man whose life was tragically cut short?
Though it’s impossible to know for sure in this case since the details of the accident are still under investigation and we aren’t representing Mr. Glessner, in these types of cases it’s often possible for the deceased’s family to pursue wrongful death damages by filing a lawsuit against the employer of the commercial driver who caused the accident.
According to the Georgia statute (OCGA § 51-2-2):
“Every person shall be liable for torts committed by his wife, his child, or his servant by his command or in the prosecution and within the scope of his business, whether the same are committed by negligence or voluntarily.”
What this essentially means is that employers can be held liable in civil court for the negligent acts committed by their employees while they are performing work “within the scope” of the business.
Some examples of a work-related activities include:
- Making job-related deliveries
- Traveling for work (this doesn’t always include your daily commute)
- Driving to a work-related event
- Transporting another employee per your employer’s directions
- Running an errand for your employer
Get help from experienced Georgia accident attorneys
A truck accident is scary to live through, and devastating to families who lose a loved one. If you feel as though you’re not getting the full compensation you deserve, don’t hesitate to reach out to someone who can help.
Our experienced attorneys can explain how we’ll help you recover damages and lost wages during your free initial consultation. From offices in Macon, Albany and Warner Robins, the law firm of Westmoreland, Patterson, Moseley & Hinson have helped injured workers throughout Georgia and across the southeast for over 50 years.