Commercial Vehicle Accident—Here Is What You Need to Know
Being involved in a commercial vehicle accident can be devastating for all parties involved.
Between property damage, physical injuries, and emotional trauma, victims often face a long road toward recovery.
If you have sustained injuries in a commercial vehicle accident and are wondering what you can do, we want to help.
Personal injury attorney Jeremy Hugus dedicates his practice to helping his clients recover financial security and peace of mind.
Common Causes of Commercial Vehicle Accidents
There is no doubt that commercial vehicles serve an important purpose. Without these types of vehicles, interstate and intrastate commerce would be vastly more difficult—if not impossible.
Nevertheless, the fact remains that commercial vehicle accidents happen every day throughout the United States.
In fact, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), there were approximately 499,000 police-reported crashes involving large trucks in 2018 alone. More than 100,000 resulted in injuries and 4,415 resulted in fatalities.
Commonly reported causes of commercial vehicle accidents include:
- Being rear ended by a commercial vehicle;
- Distracted driving;
- Failure to properly maintain commercial vehicles;
- Failure to adequately and safely secure cargo;
- Vehicle defects, such as tire blowouts and defective brakes;
- Driver fatigue;
- Failure to follow traffic rules and regulations;
- Trucking company oversights, negligence, and mistakes; and
- Dangerous driving conditions and road defects.
No matter what the precise cause of your commercial vehicle accident was, know that you may have a legal claim for compensation.
Injuries that Commonly Result from Commercial Vehicle Accidents
According to the FMCSA, a large truck is defined as one with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) greater than 10,000 pounds.
Thus, it is no surprise that these types of commercial trucking vehicles exert a great deal of force upon impact. And as you can imagine, being involved in an accident with a vehicle so large can result in not only property damage but also severe physical injuries.
Common injuries that result from commercial vehicle accidents include:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI),
- Spinal cord injuries,
- Broken bones,
- Internal bleeding,
- Organ damage,
- Head and neck injuries,
- Back injuries,
- Loss of limb, and
- Burns and disfigurement.
Commercial vehicle accident injuries can be painful and devastating. But Platte River Injury Law can help you fight for the compensation you need to begin working toward your recovery.
Who to Sue in a Car Accident Involving a Commercial Vehicle
If the driver of the commercial vehicle causes your accident, you may be able to sue that driver in his or her individual capacity.
Often, pursuing a legal claim against the driver will be appropriate when the driver:
- Fails to follow traffic laws,
- Partakes in aggressive driving,
- Drives under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or
- Drives while distracted.
Many people believe that the only party they can sue is the individual driver or the commercial vehicle. However, this is not necessarily the case.
If the truck driver is an employee of the trucking company, the company may be financially responsible for the trucker’s actions under a legal doctrine called respondeat superior.
Additionally, in certain situations, you may have a direct legal claim against the company in charge of the driver and operations. For example, a trucking company may be liable for a commercial vehicle accident where it:
- Fails to properly and regularly maintain and inspect vehicles in its fleet;
- Hires drivers without first conducting a thorough background check into their driving records;
- Fails to properly train its drivers; or
- Overworks and overscheduled drivers, forcing them to drive exceed allowable hours.
If any of these actions (or inaction) on the part of the trucking company leads to an accident, you may be able to sue the company in addition to the driver who caused the accident.
Commercial Vehicle Accident Settlement—What Can I Expect to Recover?
Unfortunately, there is no average commercial vehicle accident settlement amount. Thus, it can be difficult to estimate with any certainty what you may ultimately be able to recover.
Nevertheless, an experienced personal injury lawyer who handles these types of cases day in and day out will have a good idea of what damages you can expect.
Examples of damages in a commercial vehicle accident case might include compensation for:
- Medical expenses,
- Lost wages,
- Loss in earning capacity, and
- Pain and suffering.
If you have questions about what you may be entitled to recover in a Wyoming commercial vehicle accident settlement, give Platte River Injury Law a call today. However, it is important to note that settlement is not your only option.
Rest assured, if we can’t get you a fair settlement, we will not hesitate to take your case to trial. We have extensive litigation and trial experience and will not settle for less than you deserve.
Contact Platte River Injury Law Today
A commercial vehicle accident can turn your world upside down. But know that you don’t have to navigate this process alone.
At Platte River Injury Law, we know how difficult this process can be for commercial vehicle accident victims. That’s why we have dedicated our practice to helping our clients get the compensation they need and deserve in the aftermath of tragedy.
Over the years, we have helped our clients recover six-figure awards and other valuable compensation time and time again. We will fight to do the same for you.
Questions about what you can do and how to move forward? Contact Platte River Injury Law today to schedule your free personalized strategy session and see what we can do for you.