It may seem like vehicular accidents are all the same, but this is far from the case. Truck accidents are unique in several ways. If you’ve been involved in a crash with a truck, you need to know how it differs from a car accident. Whether it’s an 18-wheeler, tractor-trailer, semi-truck or another commercial vehicle, the injuries and property damage can be significant. That’s because commercial trucks are usually much larger than the vehicles with which they collide.
Unlike most car accidents, it’s not always immediately obvious what caused a trucking accident. Furthermore, investigating the collision is often more expensive, complicated and time-consuming. Most car accident victims can benefit from the services of an experienced attorney. However, legal advice is especially important for those involved in a truck accident.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents Any Atlanta Truck Accident Attorney Sees
Human error is usually the cause of the average car accident. The driver may change lanes without signaling or run a red light. They may be distracted or under the influence of drugs or alcohol. While truck drivers can and do engage in these behaviors, they are not always directly responsible for the crash. Truck accidents may be the fault of:
- The driver’s employer. Drivers aren’t always properly trained. And sometimes, employers push them to drive for more than the legally allowed number of hours. They may also encourage speeding or skipping breaks.
- The trucking company. Commercial trucks travel lots of miles. Trucking companies are supposed to inspect them regularly and keep them in good shape. If a mechanical problem leads to an accident, the owner could be held responsible.
- The entity which supplied or shipped hazardous materials. Trucks often carry flammable materials, but truckers don’t always get the information they need about the dangers of the materials.
Because of all the possible causes of truck accidents, determining the at-fault party can be difficult. In some cases, there may be more than one defendant. Let’s say a piece of equipment failed. The driver had a responsibility to ensure everything was working properly before making the trip. Determining liability is always key in securing damages. Your attorney may have to seek the opinion of experts and investigators to determine who was at fault.
A Georgia Truck Accident Lawyer on How Truck Accident Injuries Differ
One of the biggest differences between a regular car accident and a trucking accident is the extent of injuries. A semi-truck that is fully loaded can weigh more than 80,000 pounds. In comparison, the average car weighs around 3,000 pounds. That’s why truck accidents often cause catastrophic injuries or death. It’s also why truckers are required to carry much higher liability limits.
Some of the most common truck accident injuries are:
- Spinal cord injuries. The impact of the crash can be so forceful that it causes permanent damage to the spinal cord. Some victims lose feeling in parts of their bodies or become partially or totally paralyzed.
- Broken bones. Fractures of the ribs and limbs are common since these accidents are usually high impact crashes.
- Brain injuries. Some victims of truck accidents escape with a mild concussion or a laceration to the head. Others suffer traumatic brain injuries which significantly affect their quality of life.
- If hazardous materials spill when the vehicles collide, burn injuries can occur. They can be both painful and disfiguring and since burns can become infected, some victims succumb to their injuries.
If you’ve suffered any of these injuries in a truck accident, you need a lawyer.
Schedule a Consultation with a Georgia Trucking Accident Attorney Today!
Truck accidents need to be handled carefully. Attorneys can help you with everything from figuring out who was at-fault to filing your claim correctly and negotiating on your behalf. Because investigating the case will take time, you should reach out to an experienced attorney as soon as possible.
The at-fault party will probably have a team of lawyers representing them so you need to ensure you have someone on your side. When you work with an attorney from Bethune Law Firm, we will do everything we can to help you. Contact our office and schedule a free consultation. We’ll hear your account of the accident and its impact on your life and then recommend the best steps to take. If you decide to hire us, you won’t have to pay until we get compensation on your behalf. Call us today and let us help you get justice!