When an accident occurs between standard passenger vehicles, there is of course significant damage to the vehicles and surrounding property, as well as serious injuries inflicted on the victims. However, these factors are usually much greater when the accident involves a large truck. Even if a large truck is traveling at a reasonable speed when the accident occurs, catastrophic damage may result. Yet while most of the attention will be focused on those who were driving passenger vehicles, the fact is the truck driver may also be seriously injured due to the negligence and carelessness of other drivers. Because of this and the likelihood police and others may point blame for the accident toward the truck driver, you as the driver of the truck should always hire a California truck accident attorney as quickly as possible to handle your case.
Long and Complex Claims Process
When accidents involve large trucks, the insurance claims process is often very long and complex. Since these insurance policies are often much larger for big trucks due to the likelihood their accidents will result in extensive damages, insurance companies will attempt to drag out the claims process for as long as possible. In many cases, they will do so especially when the truck driver files an injury claim, since the company will not hesitate to blame the driver for the accident and assume they suffered no serious injuries. If you are trying to deal with an insurance company on your own after your truck was involved in an accident, you will get nowhere fast. Instead, hire a truck accident lawyer who has extensive experience handling such cases.
State and Federal Regulations
At the state and federal levels, truck drivers are heavily regulated in many areas, such as the amount of time they are allowed to drive before stopping to rest, how they maintain their trucks, and many other areas. Thus, when an accident happens, insurance companies, lawyers, and investigators will spend an enormous amount of time pouring over evidence to see if any regulations were violated prior to the accident. If you happen to be the truck driver involved in the crash, expect much scrutiny to come your way. Along with examining your logs to verify you did not drive past your deadline to stop and rest, investigators will also examine maintenance records from your truck, your past driving history, and even if you have had any issues with drugs or alcohol while behind the wheel. If you know you violated no regulations and were not responsible for the crash, hire a personal injury lawyer from West Coast Trial Lawyers to fight for you from start to finish.
Since a semi-truck can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds as it drives down the highway, accidents that include large trucks almost always are much larger and may involve multiple vehicles. Even if a large truck takes evasive action to avoid an accident, there is a chance other vehicles will be hit, pinned under the truck, or involved in multi-car pileups. As a result, the crash scene will be far more complex to investigate, meaning police will need additional time to complete their investigations and file an accident report. Unfortunately in many cases, officers may rush through their investigations and make assumptions, such as automatically assigning blame for the accident to the truck driver. Since there will be much evidence to be examined in these cases, always place your trust in a California truck accident attorney who has a strong track record of success winning these cases for truck drivers.
Medical Bills and Lost Income
Even if you were driving a large truck at the time of your accident, there is a strong chance you too suffered serious injuries such as broken bones, head trauma such as a concussion or more serious brain injury, lacerations from broken glass, and neck and back injuries that could require surgery and months of therapy and rehabilitation. If you did suffer such injuries, you will also be unable to resume driving a truck anytime soon, meaning you and your family will start to lose significant amounts of income. Yet despite this, your trucking company and its insurance company will probably be in no hurry to help you through this difficult time, especially if they are trying to blame you for the accident. Since you will need substantial compensation to help you and your family through this crisis, don’t think you will be able to deal simultaneously with your employer and the insurance company. To get the compensation you need and deserve, hire a truck accident lawyer to protect your rights while your case plays out.
Wrongful Death Lawsuits
If your truck was involved in an accident that resulted in a fatality for another driver or passenger, you may be hit with a wrongful death lawsuit by the victim’s family. If this happens, they will be trying to gain thousands of dollars in compensation from you, your trucking company, and the insurance company. When these lawsuits occur, expect your reputation as a trucking professional to be smeared as much as possible by the plaintiff and their attorneys. Since those bringing this lawsuit against you will be alleging you were negligent and careless regarding the operation of your truck, you will need to hire a personal injury lawyer who has the ability to work with accident reconstruction analysts to prove otherwise. By examining evidence from the crash scene, reconstructing key details from the crash, and offering testimony in court, your attorney can show your actions behind the wheel of your truck were in no way negligent.
Higher Fatality and Injury Rates
In some situations, drivers on the road may put themselves in a position where they intentionally get involved in an accident with a large truck. Because of this, statistics tend to show large truck accidents have higher injury and fatality rates than accidents involving only standard passenger vehicles. Whether a driver suddenly applies their brakes while in front of your truck, swerves into your lane unexpectedly, or acts in other careless ways on the road, they will still insist the accident was your fault. Even if you were obeying the speed limit when the crash occurred and did everything possible to keep the accident from happening, other drivers will still shift the blame to you and your truck. If you hesitate and allow these skewed statistics to be used against you, it is likely you will lose your case, your job, and the reputation as a professional truck driver for which you have worked years to gain. Rather than let this happen, consult with experienced and knowledgeable legal professionals at West Coast Trial Lawyers.
Due to the many unique challenges presented by large truck accidents, it is crucial you hire only attorneys who are well-versed in these cases and know how to examine evidence and handle insurance companies. By doing so, you can set the stage for what can be a successful outcome to your case. To give yourself the best chance of gaining compensation for your injuries and maintaining your professional and personal reputations, schedule a consultation today with a California truck accident attorney at West Coast Trial Lawyers.