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Truck driver falls asleep, could face wrongful death lawsuit

In Pittsburgh, a wrongful death is an unexpected occurrence that can affect a family and friends at any moment. When a fatal accident happens, there are times when there is a clearly responsible party and the surviving loved ones decide to get more information in order to attempt to recoup damages for their loss.

A 65-year-old man was killed when a 55-year-old truck driver fell asleep at the wheel of his tractor-trailer and crashed into the man's car. The man who was killed was driving to work and was at a toll plaza. The truck rear-ended the car, which burst into flames. The truck driver escaped his vehicle, but the man in the car died. Upon investigation, the truck driver admitted that he had begun falling asleep at the wheel earlier that night. The truck driver is facing multiple charges, including involuntary manslaughter and reckless endangerment. He had been driving for his employer for three months at the time of the accident.

When a family loses a loved one, there is little consolation for a future without them. However, with a wrongful death, oftentimes the only option families have is to file a wrongful death lawsuit to recover money for their loss. When calculating how much a family can receive when seeking damages from an individual or employer, factors like how much money the person who died would have earned in a normal life span; what the loss of companionship is worth; pain and suffering; and costs for the funeral can be part of the equation. Whether a death occurred as the result of an accident or other reasons, such as disease or medical errors, families may have a right to receive money for their loss.

Source: MCall.com, "Police charge Allentown truck driver in fatal I-78 toll booth crash," Pamela Lehman, Jan. 23, 2014

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