Driver for logistics company turns directly into oncoming motorcyclist causing fatal injuries
Charles McAleer, McAleer Law, Decatur, GA
While exiting a shopping plaza at night on a well-lighted road, the driver for a logistics company failed to observe an oncoming motorcyclist and turned left directly in front of the motorcyclist. The motorcyclist died at the scene. The tractor driver claimed he never saw the motorcycle before impact.
Directly showing ones theory of a case in clear and concise video animations can often be a huge help in reaching a resolution before trial. In this case, personal injury attorney Charles H. McAleer hired our team to create visual aids demonstrating the defendant’s liability. These visual aids were used at mediation.
The 30+ year veteran accident reconstructionist Thomas Langley of Thomas Langley & Company was hired by Mr. McAleer’s firm to perform a full accident reconstruction analysis for the case.
As a part of his reconstruction, Mr. Langley conducted a scene inspection where he flew a UAV over the accident scene in order to capture aerial photographs.
Using specialized software, Mr. Langley processed the UAV photographs to generate a “point cloud” representation for the scene — a computer file that encodes the position and color information of millions of points in 3D space. Mr. Langley also produced an “orthomosaic” of the accident scene. In an orthomosaic, individual images are stitched together and perspective skewing is removed to give a bird’s eye view.
Our team was then able to use the aforementioned data to create a 3D representation of the scene for our animations using Virtual CRASH software. This 3D representation is based on actual measurements made using photogrammetry techniques.
Mr. Langley also performed nighttime visibility experiments with an exemplar tractor and motorcycle, including acceleration experiments with the exemplar tractor. Working closely with Mr. Langley, our team was able to generate detailed animations that accurately depicted his opinions in the case.
An Overview of the Event
Positioning the camera above the scene, high enough to capture about 12 seconds of pre-crash motion, the audience gets a better understanding of the sequence of events leading up to the collision. In the video below, it’s clear that the defendant simply turned left directly in front of the oncoming motorcyclist. Given the intensity of the motorcycle’s front headlight, the defendant should have had no problem seeing the motorcycle approaching. The motorcyclist did what he could to avoid the collision by both decelerating and trying to steer around the tractor.
We were also able to generate a composite video, cutting to different perspectives in concert with the proceeding animation. The motorcycle rider’s perspective is particularly useful in demonstrating that he had no reason to suspect the tractor would suddenly move directly into his path.
The case ultimately settled at mediation for a confidential amount.
Our team can create visual aids like the ones above to help with your personal injury case. Would you like to work with our highly motivated team? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-800-210-8511 and let’s get started.