Trucking Accident Injury Lawyer
Thousands of trucking accidents happen every year. These large commercial vehicles can cause deadly collisions with smaller cars. An injured person has the option to get a lawyer and sue the truck driver, his trucking company or both for injury and damages resulting from an incident. Unlike personal vehicles, commercial trucks must comply with a special set of federal regulations. Violation of these regulations is the most common cause of collisions and the most common grounds for lawsuit. A dedicated truck accident and injury lawyer will help explain the regulations and which ones apply to your case.
What Happens in a Trucking Accident Injury Case?
The first step that your lawyer will help you with in a trucking case is to determine who is at fault and what the damages are. Evidence, including photos, police reports, insurance reports and hospital documentation is very important here. This evidence shows the two most important aspects of the case. First, that the incident was caused by some form of negligence related to the driver, trucking company or both. Second, that certain damages were sustained as a result of the accident and the amounts of these damages.
There are several common causes to truck incidents, and each is a violation of federal regulation.
- The driver was under the influence of alcohol or other drugs or was in possession of them. This will usually result in a lawsuit against the driver for his personal negligence.
- The driver’s alertness or ability to operate the vehicle was impaired by fatigue. If the driver was not taking the necessary rest breaks to prevent fatigue over a long trip, then he may be liable. The company may also be liable for making unreasonable demands upon the driver in terms of when they need to deliver shipments, thus encouraging the driver not to take proper rest.
- The vehicle’s critical parts and accessories were not in working order. It is the driver’s responsibility to check his truck. It is also the company’s responsibly to check trucks and keep their fleet in compliance with safety regulations.
- The freight or cargo was not properly secured. Loaders may have initially secured the load, but it is the driver’s responsibility to check the load and continue to ensure that it is secure throughout the journey.
- The driver was pushed to operate at illegal speeds in order to meet a deadline. The driver is liable for making the choice to speed illegally, and the company is liable for pushing an unreasonable timetable on the driver that encouraged illegal speeds.
What Do You Get In a Lawsuit?
All injury lawsuits against a trucking company or driver will award the plaintiff damages. This is a monetary amount based on several factors. The plaintiff may be awarded economic, non-economic and punitive damages.
These damages relate to the actual calculated cost of the accident in terms of lost wages, medical bills or repair bills.
These relate to the incalculable damages such as “pain and suffering”. The jury awards an amount they think appropriate for the case.
Sometimes the court will award punitive damages when a company is being sued. These damages are meant to serve as a warning to the company that they need to fix the problem that caused the accident.
Trucking injury cases can be complicated. A knowledgeable lawyer is needed. A dedicated personal injury lawyer from our firm will help you realize your case and the get the most out of it in court or in settlement. You can call today for a free consultation.