Serving Truck Accident Victims Throughout the Southeast
Truck accidents are more common than you might think, and are often quite serious. In 2015, about 1/3 of all motor vehicle accident fatalities in Georgia occurred in collisions involving trucks. That figure includes both large trucks (as semi-tractor trailers and other heavy commercial trucks are described) and light trucks and vans.
Large Truck Accidents
Nationwide, about 4,000 people are killed and 95,000 injured each year in motor vehicle accidents involving large trucks. The sheer size and weight of a large truck means that those outside the truck often suffer more serious injuries and are more likely to be killed than those inside the truck. Occupants of other vehicles and non-occupants such as pedestrians and bicyclists suffer more than 80% of truck accident fatalities and nearly 75% of injuries.
Causes of Large Truck Accidents
While truck accidents occur in many settings and for many reasons, a handful of causes account for a high percentage of large truck collisions. Some of the most common causes include:
- Loss of control of the vehicle because the driver was traveling too fast for conditions
- The truck running off the side of the road
- The truck traveling across the lane marker
- Another motor vehicle encroaching into the truck’s lane
Commercial truck drivers, through their own fault or acting under pressure from employers, frequently violate federal regulations regarding safe operation of commercial vehicles. Some of the violations that most frequently lead to injuries or death include driving for more than 12 hours without rest and ignoring regulations restricting operation by people with certain types of medical conditions.
In about 15% of cases, the crash sequence started before the truck became involved. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the truck driver or trucking company isn’t partially liable for the accident. For example, a truck driver who is exceeding the speed limit or driving too fast for conditions may, as a result of that negligence, collide with two vehicles that have already been involved in an accident, increasing injuries and damages.
Liability in Truck Accident Cases
Determining liability in a truck accident case may be more complicated than the typical motor vehicle accident. In addition to the question as to who was at fault in the accident or whether two or more parties might each be partially responsible, the nature of large truck operation and the application of complicated federal regulations add a layer of complexity.
Experienced personal injury lawyers like Lloyd and Alex Hoffspiegel know how to investigate beyond the truck driver to determine whether an employer or other party may share liability for the accident. The Hoffspiegels have litigated commercial truck accident claims in multiple states, and have developed an in-depth knowledge and understanding of the complex regulations involved. The firm has also established relationships with trusted experts such as qualified accident reconstructionists and industry experts who will investigate the cause of the accident and any history of safety issues and, if necessary, present expert testimony at trial.
Getting Help after a Truck Accident
Of course, your first step after any kind of injury should be to seek medical attention. In the case of a motor vehicle accident, seeing a qualified medical professional protects not only your health, but also your ability to receive fair compensation for your injuries.
Depending on the nature and extent of your injuries, you may be facing a long period of medical treatment, rehabilitation and recovery. While your health should be your first priority, you shouldn’t delay seeking advice and representation from an experienced personal injury lawyer. While you’re focused on your recovery, your attorney can be investigating and building a case to help you recover for your losses, including:
- Lost wages;
- Medical expenses;
- Pain and suffering;
- Cost of accommodations; and
- Property damage
Act Quickly to Protect Your Rights
Although you have two years to file a personal injury lawsuit after a truck accident in Georgia, any delay in seeking representation can hurt your case. Whether intentionally or through regular ongoing business operations, important evidence can disappear quickly. This includes both evidence of liability and evidence of willful misconduct or other egregious behavior that might give rise to additional damages intended to punish the company.
Loss or destruction of this evidence could harm or even destroy your claim. Thus, it is in your best interest to get an experienced truck accident lawyer on the case immediately, so that your attorney can begin investigating immediately and ensure that evidence is preserved.
Attorneys Who Fight for Accident Victims
At Hoffspiegel Law, we don’t take on a large number of cases seeking a quick settlement. We work with a small number of clients who have been seriously or even catastrophically injured, fully investing in each case and each client’s future. We are always prepared to take a case to trial, and will never settle unless we truly believe it is in your best interest.
If you’ve been injured and need help, contact us today at (404) 760-8600, or click the Contact Us button below.