New Hampshire was the site of several truck accident news stories this month in Hopkinton, Dover and Concord. The news story out of Concord is a bittersweet one for a New Hampshire family, who reached a settlement with a trucking company after a 2013 truck accident left one of their own dead.
It’s been two years since 40-year-old Kerry Anderson-Baker was struck and killed when a wheel became dislodged from a tractor trailer and flew through her windshield. It was September 18, 2013 when Anderson-Baker was commuting to work in Lawrence, Massachusetts, where she worked at Lawrence General Hospital.
She was driving southbound on Interstate 93 near the Hooksett rest area when a tire flew off a northbound tractor trailer hauling a modular home. The tire ended up ricocheting off of a police cruiser before it crossed into southbound traffic.
Carol Anderson (Kerry’s mother) remembers getting a call that September morning from her daughter’s husband saying that he couldn’t get a hold of his wife. Carol drove over to the couple’s home in Concord, where there were two New Hampshire state police officers at the door. They didn’t have to say anything to her, Carol remembers, she just knew that her daughter was gone.
Carol adopted Kerry when she was six months old. “She’s been my daughter since they put her in my arms,” Anderson told the Concord Monitor. “To lose her is devastating.”
The accident that caused Anderson-Baker’s tragic death became the subject of investigation by the state police and the Merrimack County Attorney’s office. Questions quickly began to surface shortly after the fatal accident, specifically about the condition of the tractor trailer, and the safety records of the truck driver Alan Condon and his employer, Crawford Homes (both based out of Maine).
An investigation would go on to reveal that neither the truck nor the trailer it was hauling should have been on the road. According to an inspection, the brakes on each were worn. Investigators said the entire brake mechanism on the wheel that killed Anderson-Baker fell off the trailer during the incident on Interstate 93.
No criminal charges were ever brought against Condon or Crawford Homes, but the family decided to file a truck accident lawsuit last year, claiming negligence caused the accident that killed Anderson-Baker.
Crawford Homes employed two drivers and had a fleet of six trucks in 2013. According to federal records, the company hadn’t been involved in a tractor trailer accident for at least two years. The company’s trucks, however, were previously removed from service due to safety concerns in eight out of 11 random roadside inspections conducted in the two years prior to the accident.
Prosecutors said there was insufficient evidence to determine whether the defect that caused the accident was readily apparent before the September 18, 2013 tragedy.
The settlement was announced on Wednesday, September 23. Attorneys for both sides confirmed that an agreement had been reached, though neither would comment on the details. Crawford Homes has since closed its doors, though the shutdown reportedly has nothing to do with the 2013 fatal tractor trailer accident.
Tractor Trailer Driver Indicted for 2014 Dover Toll Booth Accident
A Massachusetts tractor trailer driver was indicted on several charges after allegedly crashing into a Dover, New Hampshire toll booth and multiple passenger vehicles last March. Roland Joy, a 48-year-old truck driver from Malden, Massachusetts, is facing one count of second-degree assault and three counts of reckless conduct.
On March 5, 2014, Joy was driving a tractor trailer at excessive speeds on the Spaulding Turnpike when he struck a concrete barrier, a toll booth, then 2013 Lexus. John Worley, the Lexus driver, sustained injuries in the accident. According to the indictment, Joy put Worley in danger by operating the tractor trailer after not having taken his diabetes medication.
After colliding with Worley’s Lexus, debris from the accident flew onto another vehicle, and Joy collided with yet another passenger vehicle. A second reckless conduct charge accuses Joy of putting driver Alan Young in danger after debris struck Young’s car. The third reckless conduct was for endangering Robyn Cameron, whose car was also hit by Joy’s tractor trailer.
The charges against Joy do not mean that he is guilty, rather it means that a grand jury felt there was enough evidence to bring the case to trial. According to the Union-Leader, the 48-year-old truck driver is scheduled to be arraigned on Wednesday, September 30.
New Hampshire Man Dead in Hopkinton Tractor Trailer Accident
Earlier this month, a Lancaster, New Hampshire man was killed when his vehicle collided with the rear section of a tractor trailer. The fatal accident was reported in the early morning hours of September 8 in Hopkinton, New Hampshire. Emergency responders arrived at the accident scene near Exit 22 on Interstate 495 minutes after the 6:06 a.m. incident.
According to local law enforcement officials, 53-year-old Marcel Masse appeared to crash his 2012 Volkswagen Jetta into the rear section of a tractor trailer that was moving at a relatively low rate of speed on the highway. Hopkinton Fire officials were forced to use the Jaws of Life in order to remove Masse from his car. The 53-year-old clung to life as emergency responders rushed him to MetroWest Medical Center in Framingham. He was later pronounced dead of his injuries.
According to the Boston Globe, the tractor trailer driver, a 56-year-old Norton man, was disturbed by the crash but did not sustain any injuries. No word on charges stemming from the accident.
An investigation into the fatal Hopkinton tractor trailer accident is ongoing.
Tractor Trailer Accident Law Firm Handles Cases Nationwide
If you or a loved one have been the victim of a New Hampshire tractor trailer accident, you should speak with an experienced truck accident attorney to discuss your options. The truck accident law firm of Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman has handled hundreds of tractor trailer accident lawsuits filed across the country.
Our team of truck accident lawyers have seen firsthand the devastation that is caused by accidents involving large commercial vehicles. We have helped dozens of families cope with the aftermath of these tragedies, and we can help you as well. Tractor trailer accident victims or their families often hire Baum Hedlund because our truck accident attorneys have many years of experience litigating truck accident lawsuits and other commercial transportation liability cases.