Truck accidents are not the same as normal car accidents. There are complicated insurance policies, more property damage, larger medical bills, and a much higher chance of serious injuries or death. Truck accident lawyers can paint a clear picture of what actually happened during semi truck accidents. As a driver, you need a qualified truck accident lawyer on your side and not your employers.
There were approximately 499,000 reported truck accidents in 2018. Of those cases, 107,000 involved some kind of injury and 4,415 were fatal. If you or a loved one were in a truck accident recently, a lawyer can help you get the compensation you deserve. My Case Helper can connect you with a lawyer well-versed in commercial truck accidents.
These cases are also complex because your truck accident lawyer may need to help you overcome several challenges. Whether you’re needing compensation for your injuries, facing jail time for reckless driving, or are filing a wrongful death suit, My Case Helper will help you find the right lawyer for your case.
Also Read: What To Do After A Car Accident
Causes Of Truck Accidents
As a truck driver, you’re driving endlessly with little breaks in hazardous conditions. You’re a pro who knows how to handle anything the road throws at you, but accidents can happen. Despite your expertise, semi trucks take 20 to 40% longer to brake. The shorter window of reaction time can cause even the most seasoned truck drivers to crash.
In most cases, truck drivers are assigned impossible jobs, making any truck accidents inevitable. Truck accidents aren’t solely the fault of the driver, other variables contribute to a crash, such as:
- Faulty parts and equipment
- Vehicle defects
- Poorly maintained trucks
- Improperly loaded cargo
- Driver fatigue
Famously, Jaskirat Sidhu, the truck driver at-fault in the horrific crash with the Humboldt Broncos was not only severely undertrained, several pieces of equipment were faulty. Sidhu made the choice to plead guilty to all charges without any help from his lawyer. He is now serving eight years in prison and possibly even deportation. Had Sidhu allowed his lawyer to paint a fuller picture of the situation, the judge would have realized that this truck driver was not fully at-fault.
Determining Fault In Truck Accidents
Commercial truck accidents are much different than regular car accidents. These trucks carry twenty times more than regular passenger vehicles. The crashes are often much more devastating with higher chances of fatalities and property damage.
Your truck accident lawyer will help you review police reports, interview witnesses, and investigate other contributing factors to determine fault. Other liable parties in a semi-truck accident include the:
- Truck driver
- Other involved drivers
- Trucking company or employer
- Parts manufacturer
The trucking company or your employer will likely conduct a private investigation of the crash scene. Your truck accident lawyer will do the same for you, only this investigation is about your side of the story. Your lawyer is on your side and your side only. They purposely seek and gather evidence relevant to your case that helps determine the crash’s true liable party. This includes finding evidence on:
- Expert and eyewitness testimonials
- Debris, skid marks, and fluid stains from the crash
- Police reports
- Motor carrier records
- Federal, state, and union safety regulations
- Maintenance and inspection requirements
- Safety protocols
- Shift length and driver’s schedule
Truck Driver Fatigue
Driver fatigue contributes to about 30% of all truck accidents. Most courts view tired drivers as inherently negligent. However, driver fatigue is much more complicated than that. Truck drivers must meet unrealistic delivery expectations while sleeping in poor and hazardous conditions.
Despite clear federal safety regulations, trucking companies often incentives their drivers to drive longer and faster than they should. And drivers often ignore better judgement and falsify driving logs to satisfy their employer’s needs.
Trucking company’s time management and employee expectations are to blame for a driver’s fatigue.
Cost Of A Truck Accident Lawyer
Depending on what you’ll need from your truck accident lawyer, there are several forms of payment. If you’re facing criminal charges, your lawyer will likely charge either a flat rate or an hourly fee. However, most truck drivers needing a lawyer either need a personal injury lawyer, workers compensation lawyer, or wrongful death lawyer. These types of lawyers work on contingencies, meaning your lawyer is only paid if they win your case.
Contingencies vary depending on who your lawyer is, but should never be more than 30% of your compensation. Do not hire a lawyer with a contingency higher than a third of your winnings or who wants to trade for legal services.
You may have a few additional fees with your truck accident investigation. To get a clear quote on what you could be charged, call My Case Helper.