Determining Liability In Truck Accident Cases
Sharing the road with big commercial trucks has always been scary, but recently it has become even scarier. For one thing, you can cause a lot of damage in one second of distraction if you are behind the wheel of a car, so think about the damage that a truck driver can cause if they get distracted for one second. Some recent developments have further increased the risk of truck drivers getting distracted behind the wheel. For example, at various times during the COVID-19 pandemic, laws have gone into effect, temporarily allowing truck drivers to work more than the maximum number of hours considered safe to drive in a given day or week. Likewise, Amazon has floated the idea of branding itself as a 420 friendly employer for delivery truck drivers. If you have suffered serious injuries in a collision caused by a commercial truck, contact a Florida truck accident lawyer.
What Can Go Wrong to Cause a Truck Accident
Catastrophic car accidents usually involve a major mistake by the driver, such as driving 30 miles per hour above the speed limit, running a red light at high speed, or driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of twice the legal limit. With a truck accident, a much less egregious mistake can cause widespread destruction, such as a multi-vehicle pileup with numerous fatalities. It takes successful cooperation among many parties to enable a truck driver to complete an interstate delivery safely. These are some of the things that can go wrong and lead to a truck accident:
- Brake malfunctions caused by brakes that failed inspection or had not been inspected recently enough
- A truck carrying too much weight, because the trucking company ignored weight limits or the weigh station personnel made an error
- Distracted driving by a driver who has failed to observe the mandatory rest periods
- Adverse weather conditions in which the driver or the trucking company decided not to pause the trip and wait for the weather to improve
Who Pays When a Truck Driver Causes an Injury Accident?
A lot of car accident lawsuits have the at-fault driver as the defendant. In truck accidents, the defendant is usually the company that owns the truck or the merchandise it was transporting. In fact, truck companies must carry insurance to cover accidents caused by their drivers. If the accident happened for reasons largely outside the driver’s control, then you can still be awarded damages to cover your medical bills and other accident-related expenses. If the accident was a matter of gross negligence, such as a driver failing to keep records of their trip or driving drunk, the company might even have to pay punitive damages, which are meant not just to compensate the plaintiff but to deter the defendant from allowing such dangerous behavior in the future.
Let Us Help You Today
Almost any truck accident can cause enough damage to render you unable to work for an extended period of time, but a truck accident lawyer can help you get the money you need. Contact Halpern Santos & Pinkert, P.A. for a consultation.