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$5M Settlement Using Accident Reconstruction Shows Liability in Failure-to-Yield Truck Crash

On a clear Spring day, a tractor-trailer approached an intersection on a Georgia road. Rather than waiting for a safe opportunity, and despite oncoming traffic, the driver rolled into the crossing. The truck’s long trailer blocked all southbound lanes. Meanwhile, 48-year-old Dwayne was driving his family minivan southbound. He was on his way home to celebrate his wife Jennifer’s birthday. Dwayne slammed on his brakes when the truck pulled out in front of him, but it was too late. He crashed into the underside of the trailer. The impact sheared off the van’s roof, killing Dwayne instantly.

Jennifer was devastated over the sudden death of her husband. Weeks after the incident, she contacted James A. Robson of Glass & Robson, LLC seeking justice. James filed a lawsuit against the driver and his employer.

James retained an accident reconstructionist and a human-factors specialist. He needed to establish that Dwayne was left with no options when the truck failed to yield the right-of-way. James and his experts knew the Defendant’s decision to pull into oncoming traffic was negligent and cost Dwayne his life. However, the Defense contested liability, claiming Dwayne had comparative fault for the incident. In addition, they argued that the intersection where the event occurred was dangerous and that its layout may have caused the crash.

Through discovery, James obtained static images of the incident. However, despite showing the crash site in detail, the photos lacked context. James noted how, in trial, these information gaps could lead jury members to create their own narratives. The solution, James found, was an animated demonstrative exhibit. As a result, he brought DK Global and his experts together to scientifically reconstruct what happened that day, demonstrating the crash was caused by the Defendant’s failure to yield the right-of-way.

The animation began with a satellite overview of the intersection. Custom graphics depicting the Defendant driver’s line-of-sight showed he had ample time to see Dwayne coming. The Defendant’s point-of-view was recreated from inside the vehicle’s cab showing Dwayne in plain sight. Regardless, the Defendant proceeded and watched Dwayne underride the trailer in his side-view mirror. Then, the collision replayed from Dwayne’s perspective, showing he had nowhere to go. Next, a tear-out of Georgia’s traffic laws was displayed and highlighted to show the Defendant violated his professional training and state regulations. Finally, a photograph of the aftermath was superimposed over the animation to validate its accuracy.

Per Georgia law, James gave the Defense a chance to settle the case. He included the animation in a time-limited demand letter, calling for the entire value of the carrier’s policy. He asserted the reconstruction clearly showed their driver was negligent and that a jury would frown upon their attempt to contest liability. Shortly after the Defense reviewed the demand, they offered the entirety of their $5M policy.

For over 15 years, James A. Robson has represented those devastated in personal injury and wrongful death matters. Before co-founding Glass & Robson, LLC, James worked for one of the largest insurance defense firms in Georgia and now uses his prior experience to help his clients attain justice. As a result, James received an “AV” rating by Martindale-Hubbell, a prestigious achievement given to the most successful attorneys for their expertise. Additionally, James has been selected among Georgia Super Lawyers as a “Rising Star” for nearly ten years straight.


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"If it's a case that you're willing to take to trial, then you should really think long and hard about having an animation that can do something that still imagery just simply cannot do."
James A. Robson - Glass & Robson, LLC




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Although the facts and outcomes presented in this email are intended to be true and accurate, they represent the reporting of a unique matter and do not imply or guarantee any type of result or outcome for matters in which DK Global is involved.
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