The neurological functioning of individuals who suffer brain injuries are often assessed based upon what’s known as the Glasgow Coma Scale. Using a scale of three to 15, with a number three being assigned to individuals who suffer the most severe brain injuries, doctors aim to determine the severity of a brain injury as well as the level of impairment in cognitive functioning.
An attorney for actor and comedian Tracy Morgan recently revealed that Morgan ranked a number three on this scale after the vehicle in which he and three other comedians were traveling was hit from behind by a large commercial truck traveling at 65 MPH.
One of Morgan’s fellow passengers, comedian Jimmy Mack, was killed in the accident. The three others suffered serious injuries, including traumatic brain injuries. Police who investigated the accident determined that the truck driver had fallen asleep behind the wheel after being awake for more than 24 hours.
Morgan and the other two surviving passengers are suing the truck driver along with his employer, Walmart. According to court documents, prior to the crash, the truck driver “traveled 750 miles from home and then worked almost 14 hours.” Morgan’s attorney revealed plans to investigate and interview other employees about Walmart’s practices with regard to assigning and scheduling drivers.
Commercial truck drivers and their employers must abide by federal regulations related to the number of hours and times of day that drivers are allowed to work and drive. Employers and drivers who fail to do so, face fines and penalties. In cases where federal hours of service regulations were violated and a driver causes a serious or fatal truck accident, criminal charges are also likely.
Source: Bloomberg, “Crash Left Tracy Morgan in Coma With Traumatic Brain Injury, Lawyer Says,” David Voreacos, Nov. 18, 2014