Truck Accident Lawyer in Virginia
America is witnessing a drastic increase in road accidents, informs the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The World Health Organization (WHO) puts the figure of those killed in a road crash yearly at approximately 1.3 million. In the USA alone, there are around 12.5 million commercial hauling vehicles or trucks, and the trucks transport 71% of freight. The commercial heavy vehicle industry alone was put at $700 million. In 2020, there were 2,356 accidents involving large hauling vehicles; among them, 58 were fatal. Other shocking statistics reveal that only 27% of death affects the occupants of the truck, going to remind the threat other road users are exposed to. If you or your family members are victims of a truck accident, talk to a skilled truck accident lawyer immediately.
It is startling to learn from the NHTSA that a commercial truck accident occurs every sixteen minutes, and the driver could have prevented most collisions. Negligence is the main reason for accidents; it is on this truck accident attorney will focus. The negligence could be on the driver, the company, the manufacturer, or a third party. If you are a road accident victim, contact the Law Offices of SRIS, P.C. immediately. Our truck accident lawyer comes with experience in resolving accident claims. Talk to the best truck accident attorney near me now.
Some of the reasons for accidents involving heavy commercial vehicles include; fatigue, reckless driving, defective spares, overloading, DUI, lack of maintenance, etc. The reasons overlooking these issues are due to the severe competition in the sector, to secure the contract and deliver within strict deadlines. The Federal truck accident law restricts back-to-back hours a driver can operate a commercial vehicle. Yet the drivers manipulate their rest hours due to greed for money and pressure from the employer. They also cut routine inspections to take up consecutive assignments, leading to accidents. The trucking accident lawyers should verify any wrongdoing by the vehicle’s operator.
If you are a victim of a lorry accident, the following information can help you claim damages. But before that, speak to trucking accidents attorneys quickly.
Can I sue the trucking company for damages?
The driver’s negligence can cost the commercial transport company, and the lawyer for the truck accident must leave no stone unturned to bring them to the books. Earlier, the trucking companies escaped the legal repercussions by stating that they had leased the truck or that the driver was a contract employee. However, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has made the rules stricter, making the company liable for the damages irrespective of employee status or lease agreement. Talk to the best truck accident lawyers immediately.
Though, the company cannot be liable for the accident all the time. The claimant has to prove that the company was negligent or wrongful in a certain way. For instance, overlooking the driver’s background, poor training, violation of service hours, etc. Our truck accident attorney understands the severity of the damages caused by a truck accident and how it affects the injured or the deceased family. Our truck accident lawyer investigates the claim and determines the cause of the accident and who is liable. Our truck accident lawyer takes aggressive steps to bring the company to the books and can find a way to maximize your compensation.
FMCSA regulations for commercial drivers
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has devised rules and regulations for the safety of road users. Every commercial truck driver must adhere to the authorities. Non-compliance can result in increased liability for the truck driver and the company. Therefore, our truck accident lawyer first investigates the reason for the crash and finds any FMCSA violations. Based on the finding, our commercial truck accident injury attorneys plan a strategy.
The following are significant FMCSA regulations:
- Service hours: A single shift for a commercial driver should be 11 hours and a maximum of 14 hours. In a 14-hour shift, the driver can take 3 hours break, including a meal break. The driver should take a compulsory break if driving continuously for 8 hours. Moreover, if the vehicle is operating within 150 air-mile radius, then the driver can go with fewer breaks and longer driving time.
- Off-time: There is a mandatory 10-hour off duty before commencing the new shift. The rest period should be 2 hours at maximum with breaks.
- Maintenance: The trucking company should record the inspection report, repairs, and maintenance with monthly updates. Inspection of windows, doors, and lights is compulsory every three months. Moreover, the driver must inspect the vehicle after completing a shift and enter the details in the inspection note.
- H-endorsed commercial driver’s license: Transporting hazardous materials is permitted only by drivers with an H-endorsed commercial license. The Federal, State, and Local regulations govern the movement and parking of trucks. The tricks carrying certain hazardous materials must maintain a lower highway speed limit and use the roads designated for commercial vehicles.
How to prepare to take on a trucking company?
The company will waste no time taking the accident scene under its control by sending its representatives, investigators, and lawyers. However, you will be disadvantaged as a victim if you do not immediately hire a truck accident lawyer. The Law Offices of SRIS, P.C. is a trucking accident law firm with more than two decades of experience handling personal injury cases and has seen similar topics. Our commercial truck accident lawyers can help you understand your rights and identify who is accountable for your injuries.
FAQs on truck or semi truck accident lawyers
- What is the statute of limitation for truck driver accidents claim?
The statute of limitation in a personal injury case for a truck accident claim is two years. Though it is advisable not to wait for the whole two years, the earlier, the better the recall value of the accident scene can be. Therefore, quickly talk to our truck accident lawyer as soon as possible to reveal the complete details in sequence without missing out on any.
- Is it possible to sue both the driver and the trucking company?
The victim can sue both the driver and owner for the damage. There are many instances where the employer is partially liable for the employee’s faults. It becomes easier to claim compensation from the company if the driver is off the direct payroll of the company and is an independent contractor. Talk to our truck accident lawyer immediately to know if there is any possibility of suing the company for the accident.
- Is it recommended to accept the insurance company’s settlement offer?
Yes and No. All personal injury claims move towards monetary settlements. But remember that all average semi truck accident settlements may need to be fairer. Insurance companies always like to pay lower claims and convince the injured to accept the settlement as a fair deal. But the reality may be much different. Discuss with our truck accident lawyer to determine the claim’s worth and if you are offered a reasonable value.
- How to conclude the claim amount?
The injured can sue the driver for both financial and non-financial damages. In the monetary damages, the medical bills, loss of wages, and rehabilitative costs are included. In non-financial damages, the pain and suffering caused due to the truck accident are calculated. The value of the claim consists of both these compensatory damages. A truck accident can lead to severe injuries; hence, all the associated damages are calculated to give justice to the victim.
- Should I gather any evidence after the truck accident?
It is crucial to gather evidence after a crash. It is similar to collecting evidence in a car accident case, but you may have to look for additional information. The license plate is the first place to look; it can tell you if it is a commercial or private vehicle. Then look for the serial number printed on the vehicle. Now take pictures of all these numbers. Suppose a big rig hits you; remember to collect the trailer number and contact our prominent truck accident attorney soon. The trailer number is around five or six figures and is visible in different locations of the trailer. Next, check the doors and sides of the trailer. It could be crucial information to prove the trailer’s cargo is responsible for the crash. Meet our prominent truck accident lawyer for clarification on the compensation.
Trucking accidents and their types
A lorry accident can be caused due to different reasons; some due to the carelessness of the driver, others due to poor road condition, lack vehicle maintenance, negligence of the other road users, etc. Like different reasons for the crash, there are diverse types of accidents like jackknife, rollover, squeeze play, tire blowout, and bad weather. It is a civil litigation for violating either state or federal law.
Several heavy commercial vehicles are involved in Baltimore’s road accidents, including dump truck accidents, cement truck accidents, garbage truck accidents, UPS truck accidents, etc. Contact our Baltimore truck accident lawyer for assistance if you are a victim.
There are a number of regulations applying to both the company and the driver. Violating any law could lead to civil liability. Our truck accident lawyer understands the law and deepens the rules to give you an appropriate solution.
What does the federal law say?
The Tile 49, Parts 350-399 of the Federal Regulations mentions features like recordkeeping, mandates for operations in different states, and procedural matters not falling under civil claims. However, some federal regulations have significance to civil lawsuits, and violating any of them could dramatically increase the probability of an accident. For more clarity, contact our FedEx truck accident lawyer at once.
The Federal law 23 Code of Federal Regulations §658.17 states that a truckload with a gross weight of 80,000 pounds for an axle with a gross weight of around 20,000 pounds or tandem axles with a gross weight of over 34,000 pounds. Even a professionally trained and experienced driver finds it difficult to start, steer or stop an overloaded truck. The situation could worsen if the driver loses control in transit due to an imbalanced load.
The Federal code 49 CFR §395 poses certain restrictions on how much time a long commercial vehicle spends on the road. The driver of a long commercial vehicle cannot operate the vehicle for more than 11 hours or stay on duty for over 14 hours post a 10-hour off duty. There are minor exceptions in adverse conditions, where the driver may take a break of half an hour before an eight-hour consecutive drive. The driver can go for 60 hours per week or 70 hours in 8 hours. The driver can resume work after 34 hours of straight rest.
A greater menace is driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. The company should perform mandatory substance abuse screening and conduct background checks of their employees regularly. Random screening during employment can help reduce the risk of DUI accidents.
Most states in America have adopted the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations without any changes. The Federal Code 49 CFR §§395 and 396 explains the maximum service hours for the driver, maintenance, and inspection rules. Similarly, the weight requirement of the vehicle is as prescribed in the Federal law with details about the size and dimension of the vehicle. Though, there may be a slight variation in the dimensions of vehicles carrying boats, ready-to-move homes, automobiles, etc., on non-designated and non-interstate highways. The violators are slapped with civil penalties, processing fees, and civil liability in case of a crash.
Contributory negligence on claims
Suppose a plaintiff in a truck accident case successfully proves the perpetrators liable for their injuries. In that case, they can seek compensation for the damages, including medical expenses, property damage, wage loss, suffering, and lifestyle changes due to temporary or permanent disability.
The road to civil recovery is not easy and requires the assistance of a reputed truck accident lawyer. Any issues unaccounted for can lead to roadblocks in seeking a settlement. Only five states apply a pure contributory negligence system where a certain percentage of fault proved by the plaintiff can eliminate him from pursuing any claim. Even 1% of proving negligence on the victim’s part can lead to total disqualification of the claims. Therefore, it becomes hard for the truck accident lawyer to litigate a claim in the states where contributory negligence is in practice.
Truck crash and wrongful death
A crash resulting in the premature death of the non-negligent is defined as wrongful death. It is a valid reason for a claim. Compared to routine civil cases, the wrongful death caused by a lorry is different. Because in this case victim who has a ground for a claim is no more, and hence the dependents of the deceased can file a wrongful death lawsuit with the help of a reputed truck accident lawyer.
The representative of the deceased can be the person named as the estate administrator or executor in the will of the deceased. In addition, though, the civil court may appoint an individual as a representative if there is no will or if the descendant is not mentioned in the will.
In a wrongful death case, the economic damages include medical expenses incurred before the death of the victim, funeral and cremation expenses, loss of wages, meeting other financial obligations provided by the victim before their death, and non-economic damages like mental anguish, loneliness, etc. by the surviving family members. Other punitive damages include willful negligence by the offender or wanton negligence.
What are semi truck accidents, and how to choose an attorney?
Semi truck driver accidents can be defined as a collision involving more oversized vehicles. The crash requires highly specialized legal skills, and the need for an experienced semi-truck accident lawyer cannot be overseen.
The semi truck accident attorneys should possess the following qualifications:
- Thorough knowledge of the regulations that control the commercial trucking industry.
- Being aware of unethical industry practices like ruining or altering evidence.
- Having good access to the trucking accident experts to report about the semi truck accident.
- Years of experience in handling semi truck accident cases.
- Acquaintance with the practices and customs of the trucking industry.
If your loved one was involved in a fatal semi truck accident today, do not wait any further. Call reputed trucking accident law firms at once. Only the best semi truck accident attorneys can guide you in the right direction.
Context of disappearing evidence
The semi truck accident case mainly revolves around critical evidence. There may be instances where the evidence may conveniently disappear. The company looks to protect its driver and, in turn, the company’s reputation as soon as an accident occurs. The company moves its vehicle from the scene of the crime, making it difficult to prove the accident. At these times, hiring a semi truck accident attorney near me is crucial.
Other evidence like the driver’s log book or onboard data recorder can be tampered with to make it compliant with the standard rules and regulations. Manipulating the logbook is commonly done to protect the drivers in case of an accident. Driver’s fatigue can be a valid reason to prove them guilty. Contact our semi truck accident law firm today!
Dump truck accidents
Dump trucks are vehicles that transport bulk material, and the body of the vehicle can be tilted to dump its contents. It can be a debris truck or vehicles carrying construction materials like cement. The dump truck accident can be fatal for both the driver and the road user. If you are involved in a dump truck accident, contact our accident dump truck lawyer now.
Log Truck Accident
Log trucks can be dangerous on the roads, especially if overloaded. In most cases, speeding, negligence of the driver, and overloading can cause an accident. Call our truck accident attorney for help.
Advantages of signing up a trucking accident lawyer near me
The statute of limitation for a truck driving accident case is generally two years. Do not wait till the last moment to file the civil suit. Do it as soon as possible when all the evidence is fresh. Any delay can give room for doubts and take the case away from you. Talk to our lawyers about truck accidents ASAP. Collisions could be deadly while involving a large vehicle, and the impact could result in temporary, permanent truck accident injuries or death. The victims may have to be under medical supervision and supervision for years. All this is going to cost money and mental trauma. The negligent party must compensate for all the discomfort caused to the victim, both in monetary and non-monetary means. Contact truck accident lawyers near me for quick advice on the damages,
A truck accident injury lawyer is your one-stop solution to hold the negligent driver responsible for their actions. Although the insurance company may try to compensate you with a meager figure, do not give in. Instead, contact the best truck accident injury attorney near me to clarify monetary compensation for hospital expenses, therapy, rehabilitation, wage loss, suffering, mental agony, etc. With their knowledge and experience, a truck accident lawyer can expose the wrongdoers to may them liable and fight for the compensation due to you.
Reasons to contact a truck accident lawyer today
Our truck accident lawyer at the Law Offices of SRIS, P.C. works towards proving the driver’s negligence and working out compensation for your losses. We have good knowledge of the subject and have faced insurance companies and trucking companies in our years of services to negotiate a deal with them for decent compensation. Therefore, retaining a truck accident lawyer is the ideal option to start your fight against those liable for your losses.
Our truck accident lawyer and their team are trained in a craft like investigation, negotiation, and trial. In addition, our truck accident lawyer has experience handling different types of truck cases. Call us today for assistance. Our truck accident lawyer can guide you with the latest federal, state, and local laws to protect your interest.