Things you should know about truck accidents.
Truck accidents have been one of the most terrifying and damaging road mishaps. The massive sizes of trucks and their weights that could go as heavy as 80,000 pounds make driving them more challenging. Because of the rig’s size and weight, it is expected to cause more damage than other vehicles would do if an accident would happen.
Trucking accidents differ from vehicular mishaps where passenger vehicles or Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs) are involved. In accidents where a heavy-duty vehicle is engaged, multiple parties could be involved in the lawsuit which makes the legal process complicated and demanding. In addition to the road rules and regulations that are specifically created and implemented for commercial trucks, a piece of unique evidence, the “black box”, could be used to prove the liability of the defendant(s).
Multiple factors could lead to trucking accidents. Some of them are over fatigue, overloading, and defective materials.
One of the main culprits of trucking accidents is over fatigue. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) only allows a maximum of 11 hours driving. However, some drivers tend to illegally extend their driving hours because some companies offer incentives for early deliveries and meeting the deadlines. In cases like this, the driver could be held liable for failing to follow the road regulations and negligence. Negligence
of the truck driver may include but are not limited to:
- distracted driving;
- exceeding the maximum hours of driving;
- Driving Under Influence (DUI);
- not abiding safety regulations;
- And over-speeding.
In the same manner, the truck company could also be held accountable to the accident if proven that the entity is implicitly or explicitly:
- allowing their drivers to overload trailers;
- accepting unqualified drivers;
- letting an overweight truck to operate;
- negligent entrustment;
- neglecting the maintenance of the vehicles; and
- Allowing their drivers to disobey road rules.
The manufacturer of the vehicle’s part could also be at fault if the jury has proven that the parts of the manufactured vehicle are defective which contributed to the accident that happened. Unlike negligence
,the legal theory that is used in proving the liability of the truck driver and truck company, strict liability
will be used in proving the fault of the manufacturer.
In some states, the truck driver could also file for a personal injury lawsuit for they are using comparative negligence. In this principle, the fault or negligence of each party involved is based upon their contributions to the accident. However, in Maryland, contributory negligence is applied. This means that if the court has proven that the injured person shares or contributes to the injury he/she has gained, no compensation can be claimed.
Unfortunately, if you become a victim of such an event, you should stay calm and immediately call for a personal injury lawyer to evaluate the situation and see if compensation for the damage
incurred is feasible. It is also advisable to document the scene if possible for the preservation of evidence.
are money awarded to the plaintiff for the damages, injury, or incurred loss. It is divided into two categories: economic and non-economic.
- Economic compensatory damages include tangible losses a victim has incurred which ranges from lost wages, medical bills, vehicular repairs, property damages, and legal fees.
- Non-economic compensatory damages cover the subjective aspect and the damages that are unseen such as emotional distress, pain, and suffering.
One should also put in mind that there are statutes of limitations in filing a case. In Maryland, you have 3 years to file a case until the deadline comes. After that, you will lose the opportunity to file a claim. If you or your loved ones have been injured due to a trucking incident, you should consult with an experienced personal injury firm to help you with your legal actions. With over 30 years in the field of litigation, The Law Office of Andrew B. Greenspan, LCC
is ready to assist you with your legal concerns.