Truck accidents usually lead to life-threatening injuries for the people involved in it. As trucks are really heavy and will be at high speeds, accidents involving these vehicles usually result in devastating effects. The victims might suffer from severe damages including injuries and property damage.
Filing a lawsuit in the court against the right party that is responsible for the accident can help to get a claim for covering the damages caused by the accident.
However, this can be a difficult task, especially if you are not aware of various parties to sue in a truck accident. In this situation, a truck accident attorney can help you. A truck wreck lawyer will be specialized in dealing with accident cases involving trucks and other heavy vehicles. Hence, they can aid you to file a lawsuit in the court to claim the compensation for various damages that you suffered from the accident including injuries, property loss, etc.
Causes Of Truck Accidents
There are a lot of factors that can lead to truck accidents. Some of the most common reasons for truck accidents are mentioned below.
Lack Of Proper Training: The drivers should be properly trained for handling the trucks safely. But trucking companies may not provide enough training for their drivers before hiring them. Hence, the driver may not be aware of properly handling the vehicle. This can lead to accidents that can result in serious damages.
Distracted Drivers: There can be many things that can distract drivers and lead to truck accidents. If the driver is using his phone or talking to someone else, then it can distract the driver and he may not be able to notice the dangers in front of him. Even the billboards on the road can distract the drivers.
Aggressive Driving: If the truck driver follows another vehicle too closely, exceeds the speed limit, or switches the lanes abruptly, then it can also lead to accidents.
Impaired Driving: If the driver is under the influence of alcohol or other drugs, then it will affect his ability to drive thereby leading to accidents.
Overloaded Trucks: If the trucks carry more weight than the allowed limit, then it will be difficult for the driver to control the vehicle thereby leading to accidents.
Malfunctioning Of Truck Parts: If any of the truck parts like brakes or wheels malfunction, then it can also increase the possibility of accidents too.
When filing a lawsuit in truck accident cases, you have to analyze the real cause for knowing which party to sue.
In the event of being injured after a truck collision, you would have to contact an attorney as a step to talk about your rights. That truck wreck lawyer would look at your incident and injuries to aid you in negotiating or winning an appropriate financial settlement. However, the fact is that nobody wants to be involved in a truck accident and the legal matters that follow it. Understanding how big trucks move on roads and practicing defensive driving will help to avoid both situations. Here are some ways to minimize the possibility of collision.
Leaving Enough Room Between Your Automobile And A Commercial Truck
The truck is large and it tends to be loaded with much cargo, so it has a longer braking time as compared to smaller automobiles. When tailing it, keep enough space to stop your vehicle safely behind it if it needs to brake suddenly.
Not Making A Hard Or Unexpected Stop When Driving Ahead Of It
As mentioned earlier, the overall weight of a truck means that it takes longer for its driver to stop it. Applying your brake too hard when driving before a commercial truck, may result in its driver not having sufficient time to stop it. In this case, that truck may hit the back of your vehicle or they may swerve off the roadway or veer into approaching traffic.
Not Being In The Commercial Vehicle’s Blind Spot
The phrase ‘blind spot’ refers to an area in which the view of a driver is hindered. There is a bigger blind spot for a truck driver as compared to standard vehicle operators. When driving adjacent to a truck or behind it, its operator’s face will usually not be visible in its side mirror. In this case, that truck operator is also unlikely to see you. When that driver cannot see you, he or she may try making a turn or entering your lane, which could lead to a crash.
Leaving Much Room So That Trucks Can Turn
When pulling your vehicle into the point where two streets or roads intersect, and a big truck is ahead, leave much room for the other driver to turn safely. Big trucks such as 18-wheelers have to make wider turns and frequently cannot be on the same intersection as the other vehicles when turning. You vehicle being in that turning vehicle’s blind spot could result in it colliding with your automobile.
One of the major causes of truck
accidents in California is drowsy driving. Such crashes often results in
catastrophic injuries since the driver is unlikely to have control over the
truck. On top of that, it is extremely challenging to prove drowsy driving
cases since there are no objective tests to prove fatigue and drowsiness. Plus,
truck drivers are unlikely to admit that they were behind the wheels for a long
period of time.
When it comes to drunk driving,
your truck accident attorney
will be able to prove the liability easily by doing some tests to check the
alcohol content in the blood of the defendant. To tackle this issue, the
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations have put forward some rules so that a truck wreck lawyer can prove
liability easily in case of drowsy driving crashes as well.
Trucking rules to prevent drowsy driving
One of the major rules that were
aimed at preventing collisions because of drowsy driving is the Hours of
Service. According to this regulation, truck drivers are given an ultimatum regarding
the time limit that they can spend behind the wheels. They are also expected to
take mandated rest in between for a few hours. The regulation mainly imposes a
number of limitations on the truck drivers who transport cargos in commercial
trucks. A truck accident
attorney can easily prove the liability by proving that the defendant
failed to follow any of these rules. Some of those crucial rules include;
The maximum hours a trucker can drive over the
course of the day is 11
A truck driver can be on duty only for 14 hours
a day. In other words, a trucker must have 10 consecutive hours of off duty
Usually, truck drivers are unlikely to spend
their rest time in the trucks. However, if a driver has sleeper birth provision
in his truck, they are expected to take advantage of it. According to the rule,
the drivers must be on the sleeper birth for at least eight hours during their
The long-haul truck drivers who often drive a
lot are expected to take a mandated rest of minimum 30 minutes after driving
the vehicle for consecutive 8 hours.
When it comes to driving hours, the maximum
limit a truck driver is allowed to drive over a seven-day and eight-day period
is 60 hours and 70 hours respectively. Once a driver reaches the limit, he must
take rest of at least 34 hours off duty
Drivers who transport passengers will have to
follow even stricter time limitations. Note that they can drive only up to 10
consecutive hours after which they will have to take rest at
least 8 hours off duty
As per statistics, truck collisions are more dangerous than the ones
involving only cars. Unsurprisingly, the truck accident victim is likelier to
have injuries which keep them from going back to their work. In the event you
were involved in an accident, you may be entitled to seek a disability claim.
It is still essential to properly assert your rights. That is where an
experienced and skilled truck wreck lawyer can help.
Types of Benefits
Available to a Victim
A short-term disability program bridges the gap between your
catastrophic accident time and the time where you establish permanent
disability status. The California State Disability Insurance program gives those
who work for companies, involved in the SDI program, a maximum of 52 weeks of
insurance coverage. The program benefits cover 60% to 70% of the income you
were making before your accident.
If you have had to reduce the working hours because of your accident
injury, then you may also be eligible for partial benefits. You will be
eligible for it even when you get different federal disability benefits, like
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI).
To get these benefits, you need to apply for the same inside seven
weeks of establishing that you cannot go back to work due to the injury. You
will also have to file a disability claim form duly signed by the right medical
Some individuals find getting the right medical practitioner or filing
their claim to be overwhelming following a truck accident. The concerned truck
driver may need to cope with the employer who fails to give the claim form the
driver needs, or who demands them to report back to work before they are able.
An attorney specializing in automobile and truck accident law can help you with
filing this claim and dealing with the employer.
In the event you cannot go back to work in the foreseeable future, you
may be able to apply for a permanent disability claim through the Social
Security Administration. The SSA bases the benefits on the number of years you
have worked and how much you have earned in those years. They manage two kinds
of disability income: Supplemental Security Income and Social Security
Disability Insurance. As mentioned above, Social Security Disability Insurance
is calculated on the basis of factors like your average income in the period of
time you were employed. The benefits of Supplemental Security Income are
available to those with limited income who are disabled, blind or are aged 65
years or above. You may be able to collect both SSI and SSDI at once.
Injuries Which May
Deserve a Disability Benefit
As said earlier, you should apply for SSD benefits and will have to
provide documentation that explains why you cannot go back to work. Some of the
injuries which may qualify the accident victim for SSI or SSDI benefits can
include the following.
Seriously injured legs or arms
Post-traumatic stress disorder
Partial or full paralysis
How to Fight the
Denial of a Disability Claim
There are several reasons your SSD or SDI claim could be turned down.
Some of the common reasons for denial include the following.
Lack of medical evidence that can be verified
Earlier denials of a claim similar to this
Not cooperating with agency personnel who evaluate your claim
Not following your treatment plan
Besides the above, several truck accident victims find that the
injuries they sustained are challenged by the company which employs them. Rely
on a law firm with experience to help you file your claim again to make a
relatively more convincing case.
versus Injury Lawsuits
When you have sustained life-changing injuries in an accident of this
kind, SSDI/SSI and SDI can provide access to the funds you need for daily
survival, medical requirements and to give your family. A rather important
source of income will likely be found by filing an injury lawsuit against that
negligent driver, who is to blame for your injury.
Many parties can be found by the court or jury to be guilty in a truck
versus motorcycle or passenger car accident. They can include the truck’s
manufacturer or mechanic, the driver’s employer or their shipping agent, and
the agencies responsible to ensure road conditions are safe. Even when you are
found to be partially guilty for the truck accident, you may seek damages in
the event the other parties are more at fault.
Disability originating from the accident can play a big role in your
injury case. The disabling injuries you sustained may factor into the
The loss of your future wages
Punitive damages when the negligence was intentional or extreme
Gathering evidence right at the accident scene as soon as you can is
an essential part of seeking compensation for damages based on your disability.
It is also important to make your injury case persuasively. Your odds of
winning a settlement or the grant at trial which you deserve will improve
considerably when you retain the services of an experienced injury attorney.
The number of large commercial trucks rolling on the roadways of the
United States is increasing with every passing year. Sadly, the statistics of
the accidents in which these trucks, 18 wheelers, trailers, etc., are involved
are also the same.
Unlike olden days, most people tend to rely on several online stores
to purchase different products. This as well contributed to the upsurge of commercial
trucks on the roadways. Some significant points that you must know about
commercial truck accidents are given below. This will surely help you in case
you have to deal with such accidents or to consult a truck accident attorney.
The Common Causes of
Commercial Truck Accidents
One of the main causes of truck accidents is fatigue. Without any
doubts, a tired driver is likely to be as fatal as a drunken driver. Note that
the long-distance driving and lack of proper rest are the main reasons that tend
to make truck drivers tired. After all, most of these drivers will be rushing
to meet the time requirements set by their employers. In such cases, the
employers as well are held liable for truck accidents.
Another cause of truck accidents is overloading. In such cases, the
chances for rear-end collisions are extremely high. Similarly, improper loading
as well can result in fatal truck accidents. Note that overloading truck in an
unstable way can make the vehicle lose balance on the way and may result in
collisions, especially fatal rollover accidents. Undoubtedly, truck accidents
are one of the main reasons for wrongful death cases.
Furthermore, the insurance coverage for truck accidents is way more
than car accidents or any other road accidents. However, having a credible and
reliable truck wreck lawyer on your side is significant to prove the liability
and obtain fair monetary compensation.
Steps to Take after
a Truck Accident
The first step you must consider after a truck accident is to seek
immediate medical assistance irrespective of the severity of your injuries.
Then, consult a well-versed truck accident attorney and file a lawsuit against
the opposite party to claim your damages. You can either settle the matter out
of court or may take it to trials. Usually, most truck owners prefer the former
However, you will have to file the lawsuit within the set time known
as the statute of limitations. Otherwise, you will be eternally barred from
bringing your case to the court and fighting for your rights. Additionally,
make sure to consult an experienced attorney for better results.
The negligence of drivers is the common cause of truck accidents.
However, a large number of commercial truck accidents happen due to defective
Brake Systems and
Brakes are an important part of a truck, used for transporting goods.
Air brake systems make and maintain the compressed air which transmits pressure
to brakes, which potentially helps stop a truck fast. If an emergency comes
about and a truck has to brake suddenly, working brakes help prevent an
Brakes can be damaged due to the way these were made. In other
situations, issues with brakes can be the consequence of poor maintenance.
Frequent brake inspections help spot any issues with a truck’s air brake
systems, like issues with brake lines or brake hoses. Drum brakes have to be
checked for overheating or cracks.
There are usually warning signs when a vehicle’s brake system is being
compromised, like screeching sounds, dash lights, fluid on the surface, and
vibrations. If these signs were ignored, then the driver, the company that
employs them, or the entity which serviced the vehicle could be held
responsible for resulting injuries.
Some trucks have side-saddled tanks, despite the fact that having one
in that position is risky. In the case a fuel tank is hit in an accident, an
explosion or fire may arise. If you were injured in an accident due to that
collision, then your truck wreck lawyer might just be able to find out the
source of that fire and whether the location of the tank also contributed to
These parts keep passenger automobiles from sliding below the truck if
a rear-end collision takes place. If the guards of a truck do not conform to
the minimum standards, then severe injuries or deaths may arise if a passenger
auto collides into the back side of that truck.
These wipers are required to clear the front window of a truck of
raindrops and other obstructions to vision. If these are not in working order,
then the driver of that truck may not see autos or other dangers on the roadway
while driving through a heavy downpour or some other inclement weather.
Another common reason for a truck accident is a blowout. Tire blowouts
can happen when these parts are not inflated as they should be or are worn
down. Tires can wear quickly when these are not maintained in the proper way,
which makes handling the vehicle more tricky for the driver.
Most of these issues can be avoided in an effective way by careful
check of the air pressure, tread depth and tread separation of tires.
Inspections have to also assess these parts for cuts and cracks.
The number of trucks rolling on
the roadways of the United States of America is increasing with every passing
year and so is the number of truck accidents. Unlike most other road accidents,
truck accidents are often fatal and devastating. Mostly, this is because of the
heavy load and the size of the trucks. In most cases, the life quality of the
truck accident victims is likely to get affected badly when compared to other
accidents that involve passenger vehicles.
So, hiring a truck
accident attorney is significant to hold the person responsible for your
loses as well as to obtain financial coverage for your damages. This is ideal
to ensure a healthy settlement as well.
On top of that, the chances for
multiple parties to be involved in truck accidents are high. Hence, legal
proceedings can be a bit complicated. Usually, the truck driver, truck owner,
employer, manufacturing company, government entities, etc., are held
responsible for truck accidents. Hence, it is indispensable to rely on an
efficient team who are specialized in truck accident cases. Furthermore, the
rules and regulations in the trucking industry are somewhat different from that
of other vehicles. If you are still skeptic about the same, below are some more
reasons that favor the idea of hiring a truck accident attorney to represent your case in
Truck accident cases are more complicated
When compared to other motor
vehicle accidents, truck accident cases are more complicated. Plus, it will be
challenging to prove the liability in this case. As mentioned earlier, multiple
parties likely to be involved in most truck accident cases. An experienced truck wreck lawyer will be
able to easily assess the case and determine who is at fault. Plus, they will
be able to litigate with the right parties and obtain the maximum monetary
compensation that you are entitled to. Needless to mention, it will be really
challenging to win the case if a government entity is involved in the case. For
instance, you can sue the government if the accident is caused because of a
faulty traffic signal of potholes. In such cases, having an experienced truck wreck lawyer on your
side is really significant.
The right legal strategy
Choosing a specialized truck accident attorney will
be the best option to get financial coverage for non-economical losses such as
trauma, suffering, pain, mental distress, loss of companionship, etc. When it
comes to personal injury lawyers, they are likely to concentrate solely on
obtaining compensation for the injuries and property damages. The experts in
the field will, however, employ the right legal strategy to achieve financial
coverage for both economical and non-economical damages.
If you have ever been injured in
a truck crash, you would have probably suffered a lot of pain, mental distress,
and frustration. At the same time, you would also think about filing a truck
accident claim and hold the person liable for your condition. Even though this
will not make things back to normal, you can obtain financial coverage for your
damages. Note that unlike other road accidents, truck accidents often result in
catastrophic injuries such as brain damage, spinal injury, compound fracture,
etc. Needless to mention, this will pose a negative impact on your profession
and, thereby, your daily wages. By hiring a credible truck accident attorney, you can obtain
financial compensation for all your suffering, pain, loss of income, medical
expenses, mental trauma, etc. However, since there are several truck accident
lawyers in the field, you are likely to get confused when it comes to choosing
one. Some of the factors that you must consider while choosing one are listed
Is your advocate specialized in the truck accident field?
The main thing that you must
notice is to hire a truck wreck
lawyer who is specialized in the field rather than a personal injury
lawyer. Note that there are many rules and regulations in the truck industry
that can be easily assessed by an advocate who deals with similar cases every
day. Moreover, it will be really challenging to obtain monetary coverage for
your damages in truck accident cases since multiple parties are likely to be
involved in a case. So, you must never compromise while choosing your truck wreck lawyer.
The expertise of the truck
The prime consideration you must
give while choosing a truck
accident attorney is their experience. It is to be noted that a
well-versed advocate can easily assess even a complicated case and obtain the
maximum compensation that a victim is entitled to. Some of the important points
you must note in this case include;
The years of experience in the truck accident
Does your lawyer handle cases other than truck
The track record of your attorney in dealing
with similar cases and their success rate
The attorney fee
Another factor that you must
consider is the fee imposed by your truck wreck lawyer for their service. It will be better to
consider a lawyer who works on a contingency fee basis. That is, you will have
to pay them a percentage of your settlement as you get it. In other words, you will have to pay your truck accident attorney only
if you win the case. Furthermore, you may try to negotiate and trim down the contingency
fee percentage. Plus, make sure that you will get at least 75% of the overall
settlement amount after all other expenses including your attorney fee.