Truck Accidents

Large commercial tractor trailer trucks are the biggest, heaviest vehicles on our nation’s roads and highways. Due to their sheer size and weight, trucks can become unstable at highway speeds unless all rules are strictly followed. If not, an accident may occur and it almost always results in serious injury and/or death. Truck drivers are subject to various specific federal guidelines to ensure that they are operating safely on the roads and highways. When truckers are fatigued, haul loads that are unsecured or unsafe, try to avoid the rules for safe driving or simply take their eyes off the road, a serious accident can occur.

If you were involved in an accident with a truck, you should contact an experienced truck accident attorney right away to assist you with your case. Attorney Michael P. Foley, Jr. has handled numerous truck accident cases for his clients and he can assist you with your case.

Why should you seek legal representation when involved in a trucking accident?

Truck companies have accident investigators that are on call and dispatched to the scene of an accident as soon as the accident is reported. While you or your family members are seeking medical attention for your injuries, investigators for the trucking companies and their insurance companies are busy gathering evidence in order to defend the claim. This is why victims of trucking accidents should have someone on their side, such as an experienced truck accident attorney, who will fight for their rights.

In all states, trucking companies are governed by both state and federal law and the established rules and regulations must be followed by the truck drivers and the companies that own the truck. The purpose of these regulations is to make the interstate highways safer by reducing the number of truck accidents. In addition, federal and state laws also can establish additional liability against the owners and operators of the truck involved in the accident if they breach these rules and regulations.

Since tractor trailer accidents commonly cause serious injuries or death, a lawsuit will need to be filed in order to fully develop the evidence needed to obtain the best result in the case. Attorney Michael Foley is experienced in obtaining all of the necessary evidence through depositions and discovery in the case in order to maximize the results for his clients.

The following represent some of the differences between a car accident and a truck accident:
  1. Interstate trucking companies are governed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration which publishes mandatory, strict regulations. If a tractor trailer driver violates these safety regulations, a jury can be instructed by the court to find that the truck driver was negligent per say, meaning the trucking company can be held strictly liable for the conduct of the truck driver.

  2. Many tractor trailer trucks have advanced computer systems onboard similar to a “black box” that is found on a jet or airplane. Other trucks have onboard radar and satellite tracking data that can reveal a great deal of information about an accident. This tracking date can show a truck’s speed, director, whether brakes were applied, whether speed control was engaged, as well as other critical information about the truck’s operation. Truck drivers may be seriously injured in the accident or refuse to give information following an accident. Unfortunately, some truck drivers may attempt to lie in order to protect themselves or their employer. The “black box” or tracking data obtained from the truck must be preserved quickly to protect this vital evidence for trial because many times, this data eliminates all doubt about what caused the accident.

What happens following a trucking accident?

In truck accidents where a death or serious injury occur, the state or local police departments are charged with conducting an in-depth investigation into the accident. However, sometimes the police report may not answer all of the questions about the accident. As a result, it may be necessary to retain an accident reconstruction expert in order to investigate the accident to determine precisely what happened. This involves an accident reconstructionist going to the accident site, taking measurements and re-interviewing the witnesses that were interviewed by the police department. Many times, the work of an accident reconstructionist is critical to establishing the fault of the truck driver and the trucking company and results in a very favorable settlement for the injured person or his family.

Causes of Trucking Accidents

There are many causes of trucking accidents, which include the following:

  • Improper training on the part of the truck driver;
  • Driver inexperience;
  • Driver fatigue;
  • Careless or reckless driving;
  • Improperly loaded trucks;
  • Improper safety parts;
  • Lack of qualified drivers;
  • Overloaded or oversized trucks;
  • Improperly maintained or faulty brakes on the trucks;
  • Driving conditions involving poor visibility due to weather conditions such as fog, snow or rain;
  • Truck drivers driving too long and for too many hours without rest;
  • Truck drivers driving at unreasonable speeds or speeds in excess of the posted speed limits;
  • Leaving the roadway;
  • Truck drivers driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs;
  • Truck drivers with histories of prior accidents;
  • Unsafe safety systems, reflector, lights and other warning devices.

If you were involved in an accident with a truck, please call Attorney Michael P. Foley, Jr. at 203-250-7212 as soon as possible . He can assist you with your claim and answer any questions that you may have regarding your case.

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