Every year, thousands of truck accidents result in serious and fatal injuries. These accidents take place on roadways, interstate highways, and turnpikes across the country. An injury from a truck accident is often permanent, changing the victim’s life forever. When involved in a truck accident in Pennsylvania or New Jersey, many factors and conditions can contribute to the accident. A knowledgeable truck accident lawyer can investigate the case and help victims navigate the claims process.
Trucks are unique in the way they operate and the way they are constructed. Given their size and shape, the types of accidents that trucks are involved in differ from those involving cars. Among those are:
When driving on the road, it is always best to give trucks space to avoid a major accident. However, many accidents are unavoidable due to the carelessness of the truck driver, improperly loaded trailers, or defects in the truck or its parts. If you are involved in an accident with a truck, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible to launch an investigation into the possible causes of the accident.
In a routine car accident case, it is usually a driver who is liable. Truck-related accidents tend to be more complicated. The truck driver can still be held liable for their actions, but there are others that could also be held responsible and named as defendants in a personal injury lawsuit, including:
By using substantial evidence, such as cell phone records, driving logs, and maintenance reports, a knowledgeable attorney will review the actions of all possible parties in a truck accident. During an investigation, a lawyer will carefully examine a wide variety of causes and conditions to determine liability, including the following:
If any parties are found to be negligent in any way, injured victims can name them in a personal injury lawsuit. A truck accident lawyer representing the victims will work to build a solid case. However, many claims are actually settled out of court.
Accidents involving trucks are statistically more likely to cause serious injury or death to others compared to car accidents. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), more than 85 percent of the victims who died in truck accidents were passengers in other vehicles, pedestrians, or bicyclists. Serious injuries common in truck accidents include the following:
Anyone involved in a truck accident should call 911 as soon as it is safe to do so and obtain medical attention. Symptoms of brain injury, internal injuries, or whiplash may not be obvious right away. Swelling of the brain can onset later and become fatal if untreated. Obtaining a prompt medical evaluation is also very important in a personal injury claim.
It is difficult for truck accident victims to know in advance what they can expect to obtain in a settlement. The outcome will depend on a variety of factors. The main factors influencing a settlement include the severity of the injury, the resulting medical expenses, lost wages, and the extent to which the liable parties were negligent in causing the accident and subsequent pain and suffering. Some examples of truck accident settlements obtained by Galfand Berger LLP include the following:
Past settlements cannot predict future outcomes because each case is different and any settlement arising from a personal injury claim will depend upon the specific circumstances under which the accident occurred. However, injured victims represented by legal counsel oftentimes can expect a better outcome for their case. Determining liability often involves investigating whether the truck driver, trucking company, or other parties violated any state or federal regulations.
When seeking liability against a trucking company or its drivers, there are several differences compared to general personal injury cases involving the driver of another car. One of the biggest differences is that truck drivers and their companies must abide by a set of strict federal regulations. These regulations can make it easier to prove the liability of the company or driver if they are found to be in violation of those regulations.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) monitors truck traffic throughout the country, tracks accidents, and adopts new rules and regulations that its members believe will improve public safety. Some of the more common rules include:
The highways are filled with trucks and other major vehicles that transport cargo throughout the United States. There are different types of trucks out on the road. Some of those various trucks include:
There are also other types of trucks that are more common and found mostly around residential streets. Since they drive around homes and people, the drivers of these vehicles need to be more cognizant of pedestrians, cyclists, and other local traffic. These trucks include:
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, contact a Philadelphia truck accident lawyer at Galfand Berger LLP to review your case. For a free consultation, call 800-222-8792 or contact us online to get started. With offices in Philadelphia, Bethlehem, Lancaster, and Reading, we serve clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey, including Allentown and Harrisburg.