Pittsford Snowplow Fatality III: Driver's Rear View Obstructed

The Monroe County Sheriffs Office completed its investigation into the accident which killed Jennifer Simson, age 34, last February 25, in a parking lot behind the Town of Pittsford offices.

Apparently at the time of the accident, both the snowplow driver and Ms. Simson, on foot, were talking on cell phones. He was using "hands-free" equipment.

Driver distraction-caused accidents have been a common theme of several New York wrongful death lawyer blog entries. Thus, it appears that the driver, a Town of Pittsford employee, may have been distracted, at least cognitively, by use of a cell phone while driving.

One telling admission by the snowplow driver to investigators was that his rearview mirrors were obstructed by the salt spreader mounted on the rear of the truck.

As mentioned in an earlier blog entry, investigators would query the driver about his backwards visibility from the cab, and if the design of the cab, rear window and mirrors, were suited for backwards viewing.

Was he able to turn and "visually clear" the path the vehicle was intended to take while backing? We now know that his view behind the plow truck was at least partially obscured while backing up in the lot.

Whether going forwards or backwards in a motor vehicle, if you cannot see where you are going, you don't go...