Truck accidents are often more severe than other types of car crashes. Trucks are many times used as commercial vehicles that carry huge loads. As a result, they are heavier, making them harder to control. In the unfortunate event that such a truck gets into an accident, its weight and difficulty in handling may make the crash worse.
But who holds the liability for such an accident? The driver? the owner of the career company? You?
As you can see, the legalities around a truck accident can be confusing. If you are involved in a truck accident, it would be better to ask for legal advice. Lawyer firms like Hale Law, P.A., helping truck accident injury victims, could analyze your case and defend your rights.
If you or one of your beloved persons has been involved in a truck accident, you need to know who you can hold liable. Even though car accident legislation varies across different states, it’s always better to know the parties you can charge for the accident.
Who Can Be Liable For A Truck Accident
Truck drivers are often the first persons to be held liable for truck accidents. The assumption is it is due to some form of negligence by the driver that the accident occurred.
Situations such as reckless driving and exceeding the speed limit are prime examples of such situations. At times, these truck drivers could be distracted, usually when talking on their cell phones rather than focusing on the road. Another reason a truck driver could be held liable for a truck accident is fatigue. Even though regulations demand that truckers must sleep for at least eight hours before starting their next shift, this rule is frequently breached.
It’s also necessary for the truck drivers to constantly check the load they carry. Some truckers are sued for gross negligence if they did not secure their load properly, leading to an accident. Lawyers focus on the truck driver’s health status, alcohol blood levels at the accident site, and medications they shouldn’t have taken while driving.
As you can see, the situations when a trucker can be sued are diverse and many. But should you be suing the owner of the career company instead? In what situations can you sue the Trucking company.
The carrier is always responsible for the truck’s quality and truckers’ experience. Your lawyer can hold the trucking company liable for failing to show a proper service log for the truck involved in the accident. Some carriers also hire truckers who have a record of accidents and federal trucking legislation violations. After a thorough check, lawyers can prove malignant intent in carriers who neglect to repair their trucks or even force their truck drivers to work overtime. All these are serious offenses that could hold the carrier liable for the truck accident.
Many truckers and trucking companies could say that they are not liable for their load. If the load caused the truck accident, then maybe the cargo loaders could be responsible for it. Lawyers examine the truck accident details and have private investigators inspect the load securing practices. If they don’t match the federal requirements, the cargo loaders could share responsibility for the accident.
Most cargo shippers hold logs and pictures from the safe load positioning on each truck. Failure to show these logs could make them partially responsible for the truck accident. A load that is not securely bent to the truck can suddenly move and make the truck lose its balance.
Truck Manufacturers And Part Makers
A thorough analysis of the truck accident scene may reveal damages that may be due to quality failures in certain vital parts of the truck. These parts couldn’t be repaired or could be within the warranty period the manufacturer offers. Your lawyer could prove that the truck accident happened due to the failure of a certain truck part like the steering, brakes, or main chipsets.
If investigators find that these parts were defective during the accident, it’s a reason to sue the manufacturer or a particular part maker. It’s not rare to see truck manufacturers apologizing to the court for hidden damages they deliberately failed to reveal to the public. These manufacturers may be held liable for the truck accident, mandated to inform the public, and call all vehicles back for inspection and upgrades.
Government agencies can sometimes be held liable for road conditions. Government subcontractors are liable when they fail to place road or caution signs in places they should be. Investigators may decide that the defective road condition contributed to the truck accident. This gives your lawyer a legal base to hold the relevant government agencies liable for your truck accident.
The quality of asphalt on the road, the side pavements’ integrity, and proper lighting can all contribute to a truck accident. It’s your lawyer’s task to gather all the necessary evidence and sue the government agency’s negligence for the unsafe roads. In this case, you may expect them to accept partial responsibility for the accident and agree to a certain level of compensation.
Besides the trucking company, many third-party vendors may be responsible for the truck accident. It’s common practice for trucking companies to lease their fleet to third-party vendors. This passes full responsibility of the vehicle, the truck driver, and the maintenance to the vendors. It would be better for your lawyer to know the exact ownership status of the truck involved in the accident.
That’s the only way to know which parties could be held liable. Third-party vendors are notorious for their efforts to expand their profit margins, even if their trucks and drivers pose extreme danger to the public. It’s your and your lawyer’s burden to prove their negligence and hold them liable for compensation in the court of law.
Truck Accidents Liability
Truck accidents are complex incidents that need a thorough analysis of all the available data and testimonies. Today most highways are equipped with security cameras that could show exactly what happened during the accident. The same records are available for trucks, where authorities can check the truck’s speed and the truck driver’s shift requirements.
It’s near impossible to prove third parties’ negligence for truck accidents by yourself. However, having a good lawyer by your side increases your odds significantly. They will help you gather evidence and pinpoint the liable party before pursuing the case for you.