Common Causes of Trucking Accidents

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Truck accident injuries present more unique challenges than that of a regular car accident.  These challenges can mostly be attributed to the fact that trucks are significantly greater in size than a standard vehicle, and thus they may cause quite a bit more damage to both you and your property.  The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations defines a commercial vehicle as a vehicle that has a gross combination weight of 26,000 pounds or more.  You may also hear these commercial trucks referred to as semi-trucks or 18-wheelers. 

Truck accidents may cause minor injuries, severe injuries, or even fatal consequences.  Victims of a truck accident should not have to go up against the trucking companies without an experienced lawyer on their side.  Our attorneys are happy to speak with you today free of charge to discuss your claim.

If your or a loved one has been in a truck accident, call (800) 863-5312 for a 100% free case evaluation with a truck accident lawyer today.

COMMON CAUSES OF TRUCKING ACCIDENTS

Any motor vehicle accident, especially a trucking accident, is a complex event.  Therefore, there are a lot of factors at play that may ultimately lead to a commercial trucking accident.  Some of these factors include driver error, driver training, vehicle design, manufacturing, federal regulations, traffic conditions, or even the weather.  The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has identified three major types of events that usually play a critical role in large truck accidents.  These events include:

  • Running out of the lane in which the truck is traveling
  • Losing control of the vehicle due to speeding, cargo shift, or even poor road conditions
  • Rear-ending another vehicle in the truck’s travel lane

Although these three specific events have been highlighted as playing a critical role in truck accidents, there are ultimately a number of common causes of a commercial trucking accident.  The following list is some of the common causes of a semi-truck accident:

  • Speeding
  • Tailgating
  • Driver fatigue
  • Distracted driver
  • Driving under the influence
  • Failure to yield
  • Failure to follow roadway rules
  • FMCSA and CSA violations

FEDERAL VIOLATIONS

While many individuals understand how texting, speeding, or driving under the influence can ultimately cause a truck accident to happen, a lot of people are not clear on the federal regulations that guide truck drivers.  Violating these regulations can ultimately play a role in causing a truck accident.  This is because these regulations are in place to ensure both the safety of drivers and the safety of others on the road. 

The FMCSA is in charge of devising the laws, rules, and regulations surrounding motor carriers in the United States.  These laws govern licensing requirements, training, cargo restrictions, and even physical requirements of truck drivers.  One regulation, for example, truck drivers can drive a maximum of 11 hours in a workday, after which they are required to take a minimum of 10 hours off duty. Truck drivers are also required to maintain logbooks of their time spent at work and behind the wheel.  Violating those regulations can lead to driver fatigue, which is one of the common causes of trucking accidents.

COMMON TRUCKING ACCIDENT INJURIES

With any type of accident, it’s important to know that injuries vary.  Truck accidents can yield both mild and/or severe consequences.  Some of the common injuries that may occur after a truck accident include:

  • Back and neck injuries
  • Head injuries
  • Brain injuries
  • Broken bones
  • Spinal injuries
  • Cuts
  • Scrapes
  • Bruises
  • Internal injuries
  • Emotional trauma
  • Death

HOW TO FILE A CLAIM

1. Call a Truck Accident Lawyer:

In any personal injury accident, especially a truck accident, you may want to consider consulting an attorney.  Trucking companies have a team of very skilled and experienced attorneys working in their favor and they will likely act quickly and aggressively to try to avoid liability.  Having an experienced attorney on your side is the best way to make sure you don’t get taken advantage of and are in the best position to seek the maximum amount of compensation that you may be entitled to as a result of your truck accident.

2. Investigation

Initiating a prompt and thorough investigation into the truck accident is a crucial step to gather valuable evidence to fight your claim.  You want to gather the physical evidence resulting from a truck accident while it is still fresh.  An attorney can play a special role by aiding you in conducting this investigation and letting you know what information is needed from you to file a successful claim.  They may also advise you when speaking to the trucking insurance companies, who will be conducting their own investigation.  They may know how to interview witnesses, review and analyze documents, and whether to hire any experts.  One of the best ways you can help yourself after a truck accident is to take photographs not only of your property damage, but also of your injuries.  This is an easy way to aid your attorney when an investigation ensues. 

3. Case Settlement

The insurance provider for the trucking company will often offer the victim of an accident a monetary amount if the victim agrees to cease pursuit of further legal action.  This is known as a settlement offer.  These settlement offers can often be minimal and inadequate.  The last thing you want to do as a recovering victim is to get swindled into accepting a low-ball offer that is inappropriate to compensate you for your injuries.  An experienced attorney will provide advice about whether you should accept a settlement offer or negotiate further.

COMPENSATION

After a truck accident or any personal injury, different types of compensation may be awarded to help you get your life back on track.  If you have been injured in an accident, you may be entitled to both economic and non-economic damages.

Economic damages cover expenses that can be straightforwardly quantified, which may include:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost wages
  • Property damage
  • Mileage
  • Other incidentals

Non-economic damages are based on emotional injures and may include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Physical impairment
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

Pain and suffering is often something recovering victims have the most questions about.  You are probably wondering how much you may be able to recover for pain and suffering after a truck accident or other personal injury.  Unfortunately, without knowing the circumstances surrounding your particular claim, it is impossible to estimate how much a victim will be awarded for pain and suffering.  Ultimately. it will depend on how severe your injuries are and how severely those injuries will affect your life moving forward.

STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS

Time is always an important consideration if you are thinking about filing a claim for compensation after suffering injuries in an accident.  Each state has what they refer to as a statute of limitations.  This is a time limit that the state places on your ability to file a legal claim.  In the instances of a truck accident, you will be concerned with your state’s limitations on personal injury or wrongful death claims depending on the circumstances of the accident.  To determine your state’s statute of limitations for your claim, you can consult an attorney or even do a quick search on the Internet.

Failing to bring a claim within your state’s legally permissible time limit may result in your being barred from pursuing a claim.

HOW ZINDA LAW GROUP MAY HELP

It is in your best interest to consult with a truck accident attorney if you believe one of these common causes of truck accidents caused your injuries.  The world of lawsuits can be complex and burdensome.  Don’t make it harder on yourself by trying to go through this process alone.  Our attorneys at Zinda Law Group have the experience to guide you through the legal process, make recommendations, negotiate with the involved parties, and help advise you on important legal decisions.  Having an experienced attorney may improve your chances of being able to seek maximum compensation for your injuries.  We want to fight for you and make sure you are being treated fairly after a semi-truck accident.

At Zinda Law Group we believe that quality representation should be available to everyone.  That is why we work on a contingency fee basis.  That means that unless we secure you appropriate compensation, then you don’t owe us anything.  Give us a call today to discuss your case for free and let us see how we may be able to help you secure the compensation you may be entitled to as the result of a truck accident.

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