Trucks keep the Californian economy moving. They form a crucial part of the supply chain, and there are around 30,000 heavy-duty trucks on Californian roads on any given day. With so much commercial activity on the highways and byways around California, it's not surprising that truck accidents are a big problem in the state.
If you or someone you know have been unfortunate enough to be the victim of a truck accident, you need to hire a truck accident lawyer to protect your rights and file for compensation.
|Leverage our team of experienced truck accident attorneys to fight for your legal right to compensation and settlement.|
|##How California's Top Truck Accident Lawyers Review Your Case|
|Truck accidents can have serve outcomes. For that reason, truck accident cases can involve significant settlements. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the accident and the results of the crash, you could land a huge settlement from the trucking company to compensate you for injuries, property damage, loss of income, and other related expenses.|
It is important to appoint a lawyer as soon as possible after the accident. Truck accident lawyers can investigate the accident site before the municipality clears the wreckage. Truck accident companies have insurance to cover the liability involved with fleet accidents. A truck accident lawyer will file and negotiate your claim and take the company to court if necessary.
After reaching out to our law firm, we'll dispatch a qualified, experienced truck accident attorney to the accident scene. When your attorney arrives on-site, they will investigate the events leading up to the crash and the accident itself.
A truck accident lawyer collects important evidence on site relating to your case. Evidence is essential for car accident cases involving large trucks. Relevant evidence can include inspection logs, driving logs, and black box or ECMs.
Once the victim's personal injury or accident lawyer requests this evidence from the trucking company, the company or their investigators are obligated to preserve (and not destroy) the evidence.
The electronic control module (ECM) of a truck contains critical data to help your lawyer build your case against the truck driver. Data includes information logged approximately 3-5 seconds before the collision. The essential information reviewed by your lawyer consists of the following.
- Seat belt use.
- Engine throttle.
- Number of collisions.
- Time passed in between multiple collisions.
A truck accident can involve several responsible parties. Determining who is to blame for the accident can be challenging for your attorney. However, our law firm's experienced truck accident lawyer conducts a thorough investigation into who is at fault and why.
After determining the liable party for the accident, your lawyer files a claim against the company or truck driver on your behalf. They'll select the best strategy for pursuing your case and the damages incurred during the accident.
A truck accident causes far more damage than a collision with another car. A truck weighs thousands of pounds, and the inertia it carries into an accident can cause massive devastation to property, severe injuries, and loss of life.
If you're involved in a truck accident, the trucking company's insurer is responsible for handling your claim, not the trucking company itself. The insurer deals with these claims all the time. They know how to handle the process to optimize the settlement in your favor.
If you decide to file a claim against the trucking company's insurer, you could be in for a rude awakening. The truck company realizes you don't have legal representation, and they send an adjuster to write down the value of your claim.
The insurer presents you with a low-ball offer for a fraction of the value of your claim. Since you have no legal support, you will likely accept the offer. This action is a mistake. By reaching out to an attorney to handle your claim, you get the representation you need in the negotiations to obtain a favorable settlement.
An attorney evaluates any settlement offer, identifying if it's a fair or low-ball settlement. If the lawyer feels the trucking company is undervaluing your claim, they will negotiate until they receive fair compensation on your behalf.
Several types of legal damages apply to truck accidents. An experienced truck accident attorney from our law firm collects the details surrounding the accident, working with a team of experts to assess the crash site and the damages involved in your case.
They'll present your case to the insurer and fight for a fair settlement. Without legal guidance provided by your attorney, you may not get the compensation you deserve.
|If the cost of hiring an attorney is holding you back from taking action, reach out to us. We offer a free consultation to discuss the merits of your case.|
There are many types of commercial trucks. All models have the potential to experience trucking accidents. Trucks can weigh from 1,500 to 8,000 pounds, depending on their class and size.
It's the size and weight of the vehicle that makes them so dangerous in an accident. Truck accidents often lead to victims sustaining severe injuries and, in some cases, fatalities.
The types of commercial trucks in trucking accidents are the following.
- Semi-trailer truck
- Box truck
- Dump truck
- Tow truck
- Garbage truck
- Bucket truck
- Flatbed truck
- Grapple truck
- Heavy hauler
- Refrigerator truck
- Moving truck
If you're involved in a truck accident, hire an experienced, professional truck accident attorney to handle your case. Our personal injury law firm provides access to specialist truck accident attorneys who build the best case for your unique situation.
The main reason for a commercial truck accident is driver negligence. With supply chains under pressure, truck drivers drive long shifts, with many accepting back-to-back trips. The result is a nation of overworked drivers. While driver fatigue is the most common reason a truck accident occurs, there are several other contributing factors to truck accidents in California.
Many commercial truck drivers work long hours. As a result, they're often overworked and exhausted. Usually, truck companies give drivers unreasonable targets, leading to long hours behind the wheel. These practices encourage driver fatigue, reducing the driver's ability to stay alert and sharp while driving.
They may even doze off while behind the wheel in extreme cases, leading to a truck accident. Fatigue also decreases driver reaction time, leading to poor response from the driver in critical situations on the road and accidents.
Driving a truck is very different from driving any other vehicle because trucks are large and carry heavy loads. That's why professional truck drivers must go through long hours of training to learn how to safely drive trucks on roads with other vehicles.
The Code of Federal Regulations established the minimum required qualifications for commercial truck drivers. There is also a thorough four-step screening process for truck drivers by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
However, trucking companies do not always undertake such detailed training and screening. Improperly trained drivers pose a huge risk to public safety when on the road due to improper training on how to operate the vehicle safely.
Semi-truck drivers have to drive long hours on the road at a stretch. This eventually leads to boredom, which prompts them to get distracted by engaging in activities such as –
- Playing the radio
While some of these activities are harmless, they distract drivers from the road. Distracted driving, such as texting and driving, causes many semi-truck accidents in California.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) prohibits truck drivers from pressing more than one button while driving or holding a cellphone. However, many drivers don't abide by these rules.
Some drivers choose to be reckless, breaking the laws set by the FMCSA by speeding or driving recklessly. Aggressive and reckless driving is a common phenomenon on the highways of California.
According to California law, trucks are permitted to operate at a maximum of 55 miles per hour. This limit is set to maintain truck safety. Nevertheless, drivers may pass this limit to reach their destinations earlier. The results of a truck accident caused by speeding can involve catastrophic injuries.
Speeding can lead to many kinds of trucking accidents, such as:
- Head-on collision.
- Read-end collision.
- T-bone collision.
- Intersection collision.
Modern trucks are highly sophisticated vehicles. Even so, the equipment sometimes fails to perform as expected, contributing to a truck accident.
Proper maintenance is essential to keep a truck functioning properly on the road. Often, trucks are not maintained, leading to mechanical failure or electrical malfunctions resulting in a truck accident.
Almost all trucks carry goods or cargo of some kind. If the shipment is not loaded properly, it can disrupt the truck's balance. An off-balance truck may tip over and cause an accident. Also, loose cargo may fly off the truck on the road, crashing on vehicles behind it, causing an accident.
Overloading cargo is another common cause of truck accidents. Too much weight can impact the braking time and distance of a truck. As a result, the driver may underestimate the distance to a full stop, resulting in an accident.
Apart from the reasons mentioned, other common causes of a truck accident are the following.
- Not paying attention to blind spots.
- Improper passing.
- Drunk driving.
- Poor route planning.
- Following other vehicles too closely.
- Carrying hazardous materials as cargo.
- Impaired driving.
- Lack of experience.
- Improper reversing.
- Defective trucks.
- Tight schedules.
- Poor judgment.
- Not obeying traffic rules.
- Adverse weather conditions.
- Road hazards.
In the event of a truck accident, there are several parties you may be able to sue. Truck accident cases may be complex because of the involvement of several parties. The liable parties may include the following.
The majority of truck accidents happen because of the truck driver. The driver may make poor decisions, be drunk, distracted, speed, or drive recklessly.
In many cases, the trucking company employing or contracting the driver is at fault for inflexible schedules or improper training. Ultimately, the truck driver made a mistake leading to the accident. So, you have legal recourse to file a claim against both the company and the driver.
The driver's personal insurance carriers may get involved here, too, if the company they're working for doesn't cover them for accident liability.
If the driver's negligence is the cause of serious injuries, the four elements contributing to the situation are the following.
1. Duty: The truck driver had the duty of operating the truck safely.
2. Breach: The driver breached their duty of care.
3. Causation: The driver's violation of duty caused an accident.
4. Damages: The victim suffered injuries due to the breach and causation.
Your attorney must establish these four elements in court to receive compensation. Our team of expert truck accident attorneys will argue your case in court, presenting evidence to build a lawsuit against the truck driver or their principal.
In many truck accident cases, the company is liable for the accident due to improper screening and training of drivers or hiring inexperienced truckers.
According to FMCSA laws, the truck company is responsible for the actions of its drivers. The trucking company may fail to perform adequate maintenance on their fleet or set strict schedules, compelling the driver to break traffic rules.
Trucking companies are responsible for maintaining safe trucks and hiring experienced drivers. Failure to do so may lead to a trucking accident, for which the company and driver may be held liable for the accident victim's financial losses and legal fees.
Often, a truck accident happens because of a third party. Several of the following third parties can contribute to accidents.
Suppose the accident occurred due to poorly maintained roads or road hazards that have not been repaired. In that case, you could file a claim against a California city or county based on the government's responsibility to maintain roads, especially the highways, for all vehicles.
A truck accident can also occur due to vehicle failure, such as when the truck fails to perform as expected. Any defective parts purchased may also not work properly, giving rise to an accident and claims against the manufacturer.
Apart from commercial trucking companies, third-party companies may also be responsible for loading and securing a truck's cargo. The third-party may be held accountable for a trucking accident involving improper cargo loading.
Similarly, the maintenance of trucks might be done by another company, leading to the liability of other third parties. You can contact us to discuss how we can help navigate your case. Our truck accident attorney will investigate the accident and uncover the liability of all parties involved in the accident.
Follow this procedure if you're involved in a truck accident.
1. Get to Safety:
A truck accident occurs on the road, which is not the safest place to sand around after an accident. If you're in a vehicle, pull over to the side of the road, in an area without traffic. If you can't pull over, exit the car if you're uninjured and head to the side of the road to avoid danger.
Don't hang around the truck wreck. There might be danger there. For example, a truck wreck may contain fuel or hazardous materials, resulting in a fire. The accident may also cause further accidents with traffic behind you. Get away from the accident scene to a safe distance as soon as possible.
2. Contact the Authorities:
Call 911 and alert the police and emergency responders about the accident. The police will usually prepare a report regarding the accident on the scene. If any trace of alcohol is found on the driver, the police will arrest them and note it in their report.
Obtain a copy of the police report or, at the very least, obtain the reporting officers' names and badge numbers. Furthermore, the emergency responders will check for visible injuries and administer first aid on-scene. Be sure to notify the first responders of any trauma to you or your passengers.
3. Get Medical Attention:
Even though you'll be getting first aid, it is a good idea to get checked by a doctor as soon as possible after the accident. You may experience delayed health issues due to the shock involved in the accident. Injuries like bone fractures and traumatic brain injuries are not always apparent when you're feeling in shock due to the adrenaline of the situation.
4. Gather Evidence and Information:
When you're uninjured at the accident scene, gather as much information and evidence as you can (if you can do so safely and while obeying traffic and safety rules) on-scene. If you hire an attorney to represent you, they will visit the scene and conduct an investigation before the municipality clears the wreckage.
5. Take Photos:
Use your phone to take pictures of the accident site and vehicles from as many angles as possible. Take a video of the accident site and record the testimony and details of any witnesses. Take images or videos of road hazards or tire marks around the accident site. You should also take photos of your injuries.
6. Keep Records:
Keep records of all the evidence you gathered, including receipts and bills of all costs incurred. Properly organizing and keeping your documentation helps your truck accident lawyer build a strong case for you. The more records you have, the stronger your case and the larger your settlement value.
7. Contact Your Insurance Company:
Let your insurance company know that you have been in an accident. Your insurance agent or broker will start the claim process on your behalf.
8. Get a Lawyer:
Hire an experienced truck accident lawyer from our law firm to gather further evidence and provide complete legal guidance to you.
A truck accident victim can recover compensation for several types of damages. Schedule a consultation with our truck accident attorneys today to properly assess the damages you are entitled to.
All quantifiable damages are called 'economic damages.' This is the compensation paid by the trucking company to cover all financial losses experienced by the victim due to the accident.
Your recoverable medical expenses may include the following.
- Ambulance bills.
- Hospital bills.
- Surgery costs.
- Laboratory tests.
- Medical devices.
- Doctor’s appointment costs.
- In-home medical assistance.
Along with the incurred costs, you have a right to compensation for any ongoing and long-term future medical expenses for the treatment of your injuries.
Injured truck accident victims often cannot work for a prolonged period while their injuries heal. Despite paid sick leave being mandatory by California Law, if the recovery period is too long, the victim may lose income from their employer.
Lost income is included in your truck accident settlement. Even after the victim recovers, if they're unable to work (or unable to perform the same job they had before the accident), they can file for compensation for lost earning opportunities.
Apart from the medical care expenses and lost income, other sums a victim can recover include:
- Vehicle repairs.
- Damaged personal property.
- Home care costs.
- Child care.
- Domestic help.
- Car rental or alternative transportation.
- Loss of use of the vehicle.
- Vehicle modifications.
- Home remodeling costs.
- Job retraining and educational costs.
- Any other out-of-pocket expenses.
These damages have no quantifiable financial value. Truck accident lawyers from our law firm will assign an appropriate monetary value for these damages.
In a truck accident injury case, injuries that limit the victim's physiology make it harder for them to do the things they used to before the accident, affecting their daily lives. For example, the victim may not be able to play their favorite sports anymore. They may not be able to engage in hobbies such as playing musical instruments anymore. Such limitations result in a loss of enjoyment of life. Our truck accident attorney accounts for these damages in your lawsuit.
Because large truck accidents are so disastrous, they can inflict much pain and suffering on badly injured victims. The pain is not tangible, but it is capable of causing a lot of psychological distress. In cases of extreme pain, the victim can claim compensation for their suffering.
Other types of non-economic damages include the following.
- Mental distress (anxiety, shock, embarrassment, fear, etc.).
- Emotional distress.
- Loss of love, companionship, and affection from their spouse.
- Wrongful death.
- Time spent traveling to the doctor and health specialists.
- Hardships faced by the victim and their family.
Punitive damages are a financial punishment for the liable party for causing the accident. Usually, in truck accident cases, punitive damages are not awarded. However, speak with our truck accident attorney, and we'll assess if you're eligible for punitive damages.
Truck accident injury cases can range from minor scrapes and bruises to severe injuries and even fatalities. Large trucks cause devastating impacts to smaller passenger vehicles in an accident. That's why truck accidents are more severe than your average car accident.
The sheer size of an 18-wheeler is enough to entirely wreck a passenger car. This is why injuries sustained in truck accidents are usually severe, even causing a wrongful death in some cases. Fatal truck accidents are not uncommon in California.
Common injuries sustained by victims of truck accidents include the following.
- Brain and head injuries.
- Internal injury.
- Neck injury.
- Back injury.
- Abdominal trauma.
- Broken and fractured bones.
- Wrongful death
- Coma or vegetative state.
- Spinal cord injury.
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI).
- 3rd and 4th-degree burn.
We want to ensure our clients file a lawsuit so we can protect their rights. The statute of limitations is the maximum time victims can wait to file a lawsuit after being in a truck accident. In California, this time frame is usually two years from the date of the accident or the discovery of an injury relating to the accident. This statute of limitation can vary depending on the particularities of your case.
Truck accidents are horrifying events. Lawsuits for these accidents can reach six, seven, or eight-figure settlements due to the extent of damages sustained. A specialist truck accident lawyer from our law firm provides you with legal guidance and assistance to ensure you receive fair compensation.
Reach out to our firm for a free consultation. We'll discuss the merits of your case and advise you on your legal strategy for filing a claim. We're confident we can get you the settlement you deserve. Take action and call our legal team right now.