Howell and Christmas Comment on Cattle Driver Accident

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A truck driver hauling cattle was arrested for DUI after allegedly causing an accident Saturday. Personal injury lawyer Gary Christmas says that if the man is found to have been the cause of the accident, he will likely be liable for the injuries he caused as well as massive damages.

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Between the damaged vehicles and the injuries, that could mean tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Tony Ricketts was hauling a trailer full of cattle in his pickup truck Saturday when he allegedly ran into a stopped car in a construction area. Rickets has been arrested for DUI and other charges, but victim advocate and Charleston personal injury lawyer Gary Christmas says he will likely face much more than criminal charges.

As stated in the Journal Gazette & Times-Courier (7.15.13), the car that Ricketts allegedly struck was stopped at a traffic signal in a road construction site. According to a sheriff statement, Rickett's truck caught fire and was badly damaged. Although allegedly intoxicated, Ricketts managed to let the cattle out of the trailer so they wouldn't be harmed. He is charged with DUI, disobeying a traffic signal, driving with a suspended license and driving without insurance. [Coles County, IL Court, case number: 2013DT147]

In addition to those charges, Christmas says the man could be legally liable for the costs of all damages and injuries at the site.

"Our legal system says that when someone's reckless actions cause an accident, they have to pay,” Christmas said. “Between the damaged vehicles and the injuries, that could mean tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars.”

A 50 year old woman who was a passenger in the truck was taken to the hospital for her injuries, according to sheriffs. Ricketts himself was hospitalized, possibly for burns.

“There is no way to turn back time and prevent an innocent person from being harmed,” Christmas said. “But the law ensures that victims don't have to pay for their own medical bills. I would expect Ricketts to face a lawsuit.”

Christmas said that anyone injured in an accident should speak to a lawyer to make sure they understand their legal options.

About Gary Christmas:

Gary Christmas is a Charleston personal injury lawyer and senior partner in the law firm of Howell & Christmas. He has tried more than 200 cases with a focus on protecting the rights of people injured in accidents and disasters. He can be contacted at:

Howell & Christmas
1495 Remount Road
North Charleston, South Carolina 29406
843-566-8030

Files handled principally in Mount Pleasant office:
250 Mathis Ferry Road
Suite 102
Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464

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