Truck Accident Attorney for Georgia and Gulf Coast Residents
The impact of an 80,000-pound truck is made more fatal with each mile of increased speed. Along with speeding, unfamiliarity with an area and drug-related issues are also common causes of truck accidents. Continue reading for more information on truck accidents, their causes, unique dangers, and what compensation is available.
What Sets Truck Accidents Apart
A truck accident involves a commercial truck such as a big rig or dump truck, which when fully loaded can weigh at least 25 times as much as a typical car. Because of the major weight difference as well as the basic laws of physics, most big rig truck accidents involving other vehicles result in serious, sometimes fatal injuries.
Large truck accidents accounted for just short of five thousand fatalities and 106,000 injuries in 2006 according to the U.S. Department of Transportation statistics. These accidents occurred largely as the result of unforeseen road hazards and other forms of drivers’ negligence. However, truck accidents can be substantially greater in impact depending on the freight being carried, such as flammable or hazardous materials.
Causes of Trucking Accidents
Two of the main causes of trucking accidents are jackknifing and turning. Large vehicles such as 18-wheelers are prone to jackknifing at times of sudden turning or braking. While it is a general belief that driver fatigue is a main cause of trucking accidents, it is not as common as expected.
Instead, drug use has been noted as the most common cause of accidents according to nationwide research from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety and Administration. Prescription or illicit drugs affected the driver’s reaction time in 26 percent of truck accidents, and speeding was a close second having been found in 23 percent of cases. Contrary to popular belief, issues of fatigue and distraction are far less common causes of truck accidents.
Unique Dangers of 18-Wheeler Accidents
While many dangerous facts are well known with regards to 18-wheeler trucks, some of the major dangers are actually quite unique. For example, seemingly small driving errors that occur frequently and without consequence for regular-sized vehicles become magnified when a fully loaded 18-wheeler makes that same small mistake, often resulting in catastrophic consequences. The often unrealistic schedules and expectations set by trucking companies force drivers to push their limits despite the safety hazards. Profit margins take precedence, leading to driver fatigue and sleep deprivation, as well as speeding due to unrealistic delivery deadlines. These factors are paired with weather, road conditions, and the vehicle’s performance, further adding to the unique dangers of 18-wheeler accidents.
What to Do If You Are in a Truck Accident
If you have been in a collision with a truck, there are a few main steps to take in order to prepare your personal injury insurance claim. Courts strictly enforce a much higher duty of care for truck drivers than they do for drivers of standard vehicles. Violation of this duty of care often results in automatic proof of negligence.
Along with that, two frequently abused state and federal trucking regulations are CDL driving regulations and log books regulations. However, the best way to win your injury claim is to prove negligence as the proximate cause of your injuries in a truck accident. To do so, you must provide proof of the truck driver violating one or more state or federal regulations. You have the right to use violations of willfulness, recklessness, or criminality as well as negligence as evidence in your claim for collective damages.
If you are considering self-representation, you may find it difficult to obtaining access to important documentation such as the semi trucker’s CDL test results, drug test screenings, logbook, and criminal background. All of these items will be much more accessible for an experienced personal injury attorney in order to file a lawsuit and subpoena all of the collected information. The attorney can conduct pre-trial discovery and gain access to the truck driver’s logbook.
Compensation Available in a Semi Truck Accident Lawsuit
By filing a lawsuit, reimbursement for your medical expenses and financial stress may be possible, as trucking companies are required to carry substantial insurance policies. The insurance policy may have a minimum limit of as much as five million dollars depending on the weight of the truck and its cargo. While each case is different from the next, compensation may be adjusted for a variety of reasons, including pain and suffering, medical expenses, past and future lost wages, and harms and losses due to disruption of your personal life.
An experienced truck accident attorney will represent you with the intent to seek maximum compensation possible under the law, pursuing every possible legal route to getting you the amount that you deserve according to the details of your unique accident.
Why to Choose Alexander Shunnarah & Associates
If you or someone you know has been involved in a truck accident, the personal injury attorneys at Alexander Shunnarah & Associates will work diligently to help you recover the financial resources from medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost income in order to move forward with your life. We are experienced and equipped to represent injured clients as well as to restore justice for those who have been wronged. With our combined years of trial and litigation experience, we will work tirelessly to ensure that you receive the compensation and justice that you rightfully deserve following an accident.
With licensed lawyers available across multiple locations including Mobile, AL; Gulfport, MS; Atlanta and Macon, GA; and Gainesville, Tallahassee, Pensacola, and Panama City, FL, we are committed to making the most of your case as your advocates, working to fight for your rights while simultaneously protecting your interests.
Our past and recurring clients have shared their personal experiences with Alexander Shunnarah & Associates in testimonials that you can read right on our website. For more information about what our experienced truck accident attorneys can do for you, feel free to contact us at our office in your area. Especially when you’re dealing with something as serious as a trucking accident, you need the support of legal representation. Give us a call for a consultation.
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