How To Find the Dirt on Dangerous Truck Companies

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Truck accident attorney Steven M. Gursten of Michigan Auto Law shows consumers how to find the safety history of any motor carrier throughout the country, by using the government Web site SafeStat

SafeStat helps consumers and truck accident lawyers alike identify at-risk trucking companies. Those that choose to turn a blind eye to safety and ignore mandatory safety laws are clearly the ones that pose the highest chance of causing fatal accidents

Truck accident attorney Steven M. Gursten is providing a step-by-step guide to finding the dirt on unsafe trucking companies on http://www.michiganautolaw.com.

His presentation shows you exactly how to use SafeStat, a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Web site that details the Department of Transportation's assessment of a truck company's regulatory compliance.

Gursten has made the instructions so simple that anyone with a computer and the Internet can sit down and discover almost anything they want to know about any trucking company across the country:

  • A lawyer investigating a truck accident can decipher whether a truck company has been negligent with everything from licensing, insurance, inspections and crashes.
  • A truck accident victim can discover endless information about the driver and truck that caused the accident.
  • Reporters covering serious auto accidents and traffic can quickly determine whether a truck company has a good safety history.
  • Drivers can find which trucks to steer clear of on the roads.

You can view the presentation here.

"SafeStat helps consumers and truck accident lawyers alike identify at-risk trucking companies. Those that choose to turn a blind eye to safety and ignore mandatory safety laws are clearly the ones that pose the highest chance of causing fatal accidents," said Gursten, who is head of Michigan Auto Law, a Southfield-based law firm exclusively specializing in truck crashes and auto accidents for more than 50 years. "The public has a right to know about hazardous trucking companies, because their lives are on the line."

Gursten is on the executive board of governors representing Michigan for the Association of Plaintiff Interstate Trucking Lawyers of America, and is immediate past president of the American Association for Justice Truck Litigation Group. In this capacity, Gursten is passionate about holding trucking companies accountable for putting dangerous trucks and unsafe drivers on the roads, as he believes it's the only way accidents can be prevented.

After a recent case in which his client Michael Mapes sustained a traumatic brain injury when struck by a negligent trucker who had already had his commercial driver's license suspended 11 times (Docket no. 09-000072-NI, Wayne County Circuit Court), Gursten said he had enough of completely preventable truck accidents seriously injuring and killing his clients. He noted another client, Patrick Nunez, who was killed by a speeding, fully-loaded gravel hauler, (Docket no. 07-719459-NI, Wayne County Circuit Court).

"In the Nunez case, the driver admitted in a deposition his truck was out of service in five different ways and that he had no formal training. Accident factors like these are available on SafeStat and they should not be swept under the rug," Gursten said.

For example, Gursten's report outlines exactly how to find a truck company's:

  • Government safety rating;
  • Crash history with accident particulars such as fatalities, road conditions and police documentation;
  • Driver information including compliance, inspection and moving violation results, as well as out of service violations such as alcohol dependency and driving past regulated hours; and
  • Truck safety and maintenance.

There are also scores for each company in various categories, so a user can look for trends indicating deficient and unsafe carriers. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration sets laws governing the Michigan trucking industry.

Gursten is available for comment on SafeStat, truck accidents, automobile negligence litigation and safe driving. He was named a 2008 Michigan Lawyers Weekly Leader in the Law for his tireless efforts to make trucking laws more stringent.

About Michigan Auto Law:
Michigan Auto Law is a third-generation law firm with 16 lawyers specializing in helping people who have been seriously injured or killed in car, truck and motorcycle accidents throughout Michigan. The firm has received the top reported Michigan jury verdict in five of the past eight years, according to Michigan Lawyers Weekly. It is headquartered in Southfield at 26555 Evergreen Road, Suite 1530, (800)777-0028. The firm also has offices in Detroit, Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids and Sterling Heights. For more information, read our law firm quick facts.

About Steven M. Gursten
Steven M. Gursten is recognized as one of the nation's top experts in serious car and truck accident injury cases and automobile insurance no-fault litigation. In addition to achieving some of the highest car and truck accident settlements each year for injury victims in Michigan, Gursten has received the largest jury verdict in car accident cases for four of the past seven years including 2008, according to Michigan Lawyers Weekly. Also in 2008, he received the highest settlement in the state. It was for a truck accident case.

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Natalie Lombardo
Michigan Auto Law
(248) 353-7575 ext. 269
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