A large number of vehicles travel along Montana's extensive and often challenging roadways every day. With this comes inherent dangers whether you are a driver or passenger in a motor vehicle. While it may be easy to assume that you are at little risk of being involved in a crash or that the risk increases in snowy and icy conditions, you may be surprised. All it takes is a single incident out of your control to cause major or even fatal injuries.
Farmers, agricultural workers, landscapers, and others across the country who use the popular weed killer Roundup have become ill in recent years. Some have even died. Coincidence? A Northern California groundskeeper who developed terminal cancer after using the world's most popular herbicide didn't think so. Neither did the San Francisco jury that ordered Roundup's manufacturer, Monsanto (recently acquired by Bayer) to pay $78 million in damages. Most recently, on March 19, 2019, a federal jury in San Francisco found Roundup was a substantial factor in causing a California man's cancer. After five days of deliberation over the scientific evidence presented at trial, the six-person jury unanimously concluded that the man had developed non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL) from exposure to the weed killer. The trial on liability and damages will now move forward.
Paoli Law Firm works diligently to uncover all of the insurance coverage available to victims of motor vehicle crashes and will achieve the best possible results for our clients. At Paoli Law Firm, we have a complete understanding of insurance policies and insurance coverage and how those provisions work together with Montana Law.
Trucking companies are required to keep certain records for a specific period of time prescribed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FCMCA). The FMCSA Regulations specifically list categories of records and specific documents that motor carriers must keep and strict rules on how long the information must be preserved. Pursuant to the FMCSA, categories of items that must be preserved by motor carriers include:
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) indicates that "long daily and weekly hours are associated with an increased risk of crashes and with the chronic health conditions associated with lack of sleep." The FMCSA implements hours of service (HOS) regulations with the goal of reducing the possibility of truck driver fatigue-related crashes. To advance this effort, the FMCSA Regulations limit when and for how long drivers of commercial motor vehicles are allowed to drive in a given period.
Common types of commercial motor vehicles include tractor-trailers, truck and trailer combinations (doubles and triples), buses, tanker vehicles, dump trucks, and passenger vans. Being involved in a crash with a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) is extremely frightening and may cause serious injuries or death. Of course, because a CMV is much larger and heavier than the majority of vehicles on the highway, the damage and mayhem they cause in a crash is immense.
In Montana, it's the law to slow down and move over when you see the lights of a stationary emergency, towing or maintenance vehicle. The move over law is required to be observed on all Montana roadways open to the public. When unable to move over, you are required to slow down by at least 20 mph. Not only is this the law, but taking these simple steps could save a life and it is your moral responsibility as a driver on Montana's roadways to move over. The lives of emergency and road assistance workers are put on the line to do their jobs and they depend on motorists paying attention, slowing down, and moving over. Emergency scenes are complicated and there is always more going on than other motorists on the road can see or appreciate. For example, officers, fire, and EMS personnel may be tending to injured people, communicating with other emergency responders, assessing injuries, and controlling the scene, among other duties. These responders don't have time to have to continuously look over their shoulders to stay safe. Move over and slow down. It's the law.
Some of our nation's most anticipated and celebrated holidays are quickly approaching. While holidays are an exciting time and are often filled with family and friends gathering to celebrate, for those traveling, this can all too often lead to increased danger on the roadways.