Truck accidents can cause serious injury to motorists in passenger cars, as well as to pedestrians, motorcyclists and bicycle riders. Unfortunately, around one-third of all truck accidents result from actions taken by the truck driver, but innocent motorists are much more likely to be the ones hurt in these deadly crashes.
If you or a loved one is the victim of a truck accident, you may be entitled to compensation for losses resulting from the crash. At Steinger, Iscoe & Greene, our injury attorneys have represented more than 32,000 clients harmed in accidents since 1997. We have the legal knowledge to take on tough cases and we are ready to put our experience to work on your truck accident claim.
Truck Accidents Often Occur Because of Driver Error
Truck drivers are required to have a commercial driver’s license (CDL), and throughout the trucking industry, it is generally considered standard practice for drivers to have at least two years of driving experience before they are entrusted with a large tractor-trailer or big rig.
There is good reason to demand truck drivers be well-trained and have ample experience. Tractor-trailers and large trucks can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds, while the average passenger vehicle weighs in at just 3,000-5,000 pounds. Large trucks also have a much longer stopping distance due to their mass, have bigger blind spots, are prone to rolling over because they are so top-heavy, and can become involved in accidents due to jackknifing or cars rolling underneath the body of the truck.
Drivers of trucks are expected to account for the inherent challenges in driving a truck, but unfortunately the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has estimated that driver-related factors play a role in causing 31 percent of truck accidents. Some common reasons for collisions involving trucks include but are not limited to:
- Distracted driving
- Drowsy driving
- Intoxicated/impaired driving
- Texting and driving
- Prescription or over-the-counter drug use
- Illegal driving maneuvers
- Insufficient familiarity with the truck
- Unbalanced loads
If a truck driver makes these mistakes, breaks FMCSA rules, violates any rules of the road or is simply unreasonably careless in operating a truck, truck accident attorneys can help victims or surviving family members pursue a claim to obtain compensation for any injuries that result.
Compensation in Truck Accident Cases
In 2007, large trucks accounted for 4 percent of registered vehicles in the United States but were involved in 7 percent of fatal accidents. Truck accidents are more likely to be deadly because of the increased force of impact due to the larger size. FMCSA data reveals that when a fatal accident happens, the victim who is killed is not an occupant of the truck in as many as 85 percent of cases.
Truck accidents can also cause serious injury, including traumatic brain injury, broken bones and spinal cord damage. Again, truck occupants account for only about 22 percent of injured victims from these types of collisions, while the remainder of victims are motorists in passenger cars, pedestrians or bicyclists.
When a truck accident causes the death of a loved one, you can be compensated for:
- Funeral costs
- Medical expenses
- Loss of income equal to what the deceased would have earned if the untimely death had not occurred
- Lost companionship
If the truck accident results in injuries, on the other hand, you may recover compensation for:
- Medical bills
- Lost income if the accident necessitates sick time/time off or if it reduces the ability to work in the future
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
Compensation can be obtained not just from the driver of the truck but also, in many cases, from the trucking company or employer.
Getting Help from a Truck Accident Lawyer
At Steinger, Iscoe & Greene, our attorneys are members of the Multi-Million Dollar and the Million-Dollar Advocates forum. We have an AV preeminent rating and our firm has been recognized among the top law firms. We’ve earned these honors because we are serious about protecting the rights of our clients who are injured in truck accidents and other types of injury cases.
While we’ve handled thousands of cases, our legal team treats every case as if it is our most important. With more than 130 case managers, legal investigators, legal assistants and other members of our support staff, we are here and ready to meet your needs and advocate for you. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.