Over the weekend, the news of the deadly truck crash on I-65 near Demotte, Indiana which took the lives of seven people brought to mind memories of another deadly crash on that same highway. In 2010, a family represented by my law firm was returning from a large family event in Georgia. In the dark of night, a speeding truck rammed our client’s van, killing two young family members and injuring many others. Following the I-65 crash last weekend, I spent much time thinking about how the fate of these two families is sadly similar.
Use Compassion: Protect the Family
Any family that suffers the kind of loss that these two families suffered on I-65 in Indiana will struggle. They will struggle with the emotional impact in the days that follow the crash. They will struggle with the loss of their loved ones over time, knowing that they shall never see those family members again. They will struggle with the practical realities of carrying on without their best friend, spouse, girlfriend, children, grandchildren and the like.
Yet, in the days immediately following such a deadly and tragic crash, the family needs its rights protected. Without a doubt, the truck driver, the trucking company, the insurance carriers and the shipping company will be looking to protect themselves from liability. The victims and their families need a skilled and experienced truck accident lawyer that can ensure that their rights are protected and looked after.
Being a skilled truck accident lawyer is not enough, certainly not from the perspective of the families. The families’ attorney needs to understand and appreciate the sensitivities of their clients’ current situation. A brusque, insensitive lawyer focused only on the business of truck accident litigation will fail to deliver justice for his or her clients. That lawyer will fail to appreciate that clients are human beings, above and beyond any other considerations. Too often we have clients who come to us after having dealt with other lawyers and tell us that their previous lawyers didn’t see them as people – only as cases in a docket. And that’s wrong. Compassion and empathy are “must haves” for lawyers.
Protect the Evidence
While there is a real need to deal with the victims and their families in a sensitive and compassionate way, good truck accident and injury lawyers also need to pursue aggressively the truck driver and other parties who are liable for the wrongful harm, injury and damage they caused. Failing to work to quickly and thoroughly investigate the crash and secure the evidence would be a disservice to the victims. At Whiting Law Group, that’s why we have an on-call Emergency Response Truck Accident Investigation Team. This investigation team gets to work as soon as our firm is retained. The victim’s family can try to cope with the realities of their situation, while our lawyers, accident investigators and trucking experts handle their case.
A Thought for the Families
As a truck accident litigator, I make a consistent effort to never lose sight of the human side of my clients. They are real people, with real lives and real families. They have suffered truly devastating losses. It is my job to protect their rights in a compassionate and caring way, that gives them the space to adapt to and cope with their loss.
My thoughts and prayers go out to the family of Lindsey Williams, the young mother killed last week.