Determining liability in truck accidents is an important task when facing injuries and property damage from a commercial truck. Holding the correct party accountable is vital for victims so they can receive the financial compensation they deserve.
In this post, we’ll discuss who the responsible party is in commercial truck accidents, why these types of crashes are so dangerous, and ways you can avoid them. If you were involved in a truck accident, your best option will be to contact a competent truck accident law firm.
Who Is Responsible for a Truck Accident?
Trucking accidents don’t always just involve you and the truck driver. For instance, a trucking company usually employs the truck driver involved in the accident. There are also instances where the driver acts as an independent contractor. Knowing these details will be vital to your case. Here are a few potential parties responsible for a trucking accident.
The Truck Driver
The truck’s driver may hold liability in an accident if they break the law or become distracted, even if they are employed by an outside company. Other factors like long hours and night driving may result in an accident. In most cases, the truck driver is held responsible for any accident or injury.
The Trucking Company
If the truck driver was hired through an outside company to ship goods, the company could be held partially liable. However, proving this could be difficult if you do not have an expert lawyer on your side. Many of these investigations show that the company and a manufacturer share liability by putting pressure on the driver to increase speed to arrive at the destination sooner.
Cargo Loaders or Manufacturers
In some instances, cargo loaders or manufacturers could be liable for a trucking accident. If the loader did not properly inspect the cargo or secure it, they might be responsible if boxes or equipment falls off and damages other vehicles. Similarly, manufacturers could be a liable party if there is a truck defect that causes an accident.
Why Commercial Truck Accidents Are So Dangerous
Accidents that involve commercial trucks are hazardous and can even result in death or serious lifelong injuries. There are three main reasons why accidents involving commercial trucks are more dangerous than other car crashes.
- Vehicle size: Commercial trucks, commonly referred to as 18-wheelers, are enormous. Trucks can weigh anywhere from 10,000 to 80,000 pounds and measure as long as 65 feet. Truck drivers also sit much higher than drivers in passenger vehicles, causing truck drivers not to see cars directly in front of them.
- Maneuverability: These trucks are large and heavy, making them harder to maneuver. Turns and lane changes require much more room than an average vehicle. Truck drivers can cause accidents by overestimating how much space they have.
- Stopping distance: Larger vehicles require more time and distance to stop. In general, a truck needs approximately 200 more feet to come to a full stop than a car does.
How to Prevent Commercial Truck Accidents
Commercial trucks are much bigger than other vehicles that share the road. Driving alongside them can cause severe damage to you and your car if you collide with one. Here are a few ways in which you can avoid potentially fatal commercial truck accidents.
- Avoid sudden stops
- Use caution when passing
- Use your turn signal
- Give the truck space
According to a National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) study, 94% of motor vehicle accidents are caused by human error, which is why it’s vital to remain focused behind the wheel and to be aware of your surroundings.
Contact an Expert California Truck Accident Attorney
If you’ve been injured in a truck accident, fight to receive the compensation you deserve. The experienced car accident attorneys at Adamson Ahdoot can help protect your rights and pursue a case for recovery. Our lawyers know how to help clients receive the maximum compensation to cover their lost income, bills, and future medical expenses.
Adamson Ahdoot has a proven track record in California with providing clients top legal representation. With over 100 years of combined experience, our team is here to help you. For a free consultation, call (877) 871-3265 or complete our contact form.