A 51-year-old woman was jogging in Fruit Cove outside of the Julington Creek Plantation development on State Road 13 on Saturday, April 16, when a trailer came loose from a truck and struck and killed her, according to a report by Channel 4. The woman was on the sidewalk and the trailer broke from the hitch of the pickup truck then continued another 50 feet before stopping in a ditch. A 17-year-old driver was behind the wheel and was reportedly hauling a flatbed of sod.
Friends and family are calling this a freak accident. The woman’s family includes three sons; ages 25, 24, and 18 and all gathered at the family home Saturday night to show their support.
Our condolences are extended to those who loved this mother and wife for her sudden passing.
The Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) reports that charges are pending against the driver. If the 17-year-old was on the job, his employer could also be held liable for this fatality.
Whether hauling sod, debris, lawn equipment, or anything in the back of a truck or trailer, it is imperative that the items are properly secured. The trailer hitch should include a safety chain so even if the hitch fails, the trailer will not detach from the vehicle. When attaching a trailer, the manufacturer’s instructions will dictate the amount of weight that can be towed. The brakes and turn signals must be working on the rear of a trailer.
Additionally, it is important the driver has been properly trained in these safety procedures and how to secure items within a trailer. If the business has failed to properly train its employee, it could be held liable for this tragic death.
Drivers too need to be aware that debris flying from a trailer is more common than we would like to believe. Many accidents are caused when a motorist suddenly swerves to avoid a fallen object.
Florida wrongful death attorneys have seen the devastation that can occur when someone loading a trailer is negligent. From a broken windshield, to auto accidents, and even death, these types of accidents are tragic and most important – they are totally preventable.