There is nothing more American than navigating the roads. Few feelings are more liberating than the one you get from cruising down the open highway on a warm, sunny day in Georgia. However, the joys of driving can be shattered instantly due to the negligence of others. Automobile accidents continue to be one of the leading causes of death in America. When trucks are involved, the severity of damage and harm can increase exponentially. The average tractor trailer weighs 20 to 30 times more than the average automobile. The added weight and momentum of trucks traveling at highway speeds, along with the increased time it takes for those vehicles to stop, can easily result in lifelong injuries, paralysis, or death. Unfortunately, automobile accidents involving tractor trailers are all too common. If you are the victim of a commercial truck driving accident that resulted from the negligence of another, you may be entitled to compensation. Below are the steps to take moving forward.
While it may seem straightforward that the truck driver should be held liable for accidents involving his or her vehicle, this may not always be the case, or at least, it may not always be the complete picture. For most people, it is easy to underestimate the complexity of the commercial trucking world. The sections below highlight some of the most relevant factors to consider when determining liability.
For determining whether the driver acted in a negligent way that caused the accident, you should consider whether the operator was:
- Driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs and/or sleep suppressants.
- Driving erratically, dangerously fast or with disregard to the safety of others on the road.
- Too tired to operate the vehicle safely.
- Driving more than the maximum allotted hours in a given day.
Liability of Others
Aside from the driver, there are other actors involved in commercial trucking whose negligence could be partially or completely responsible for your accident and the injuries you suffered. They include the companies and individuals responsible for:
- Training the driver on how to safely operate the truck.
- Maintaining a safe and working vehicle.
- Stocking cargo safely in the truck.
If any one of these actors failed to perform their duties properly, they may be held liable in a personal injury suit.
Steps to Follow
If you have been in an accident with a tractor trailer, it is essential for you to act quickly.
- Begin by calling the police
- Ask for the insurance information of the driver, writing down the driver’s company name and getting the contact information of any eye witnesses.
- All of this information will be critically important if you decide to move forward with a personal injury suit. The team at Schneider Hammers will utilize this information, testimony of expert witnesses and documentary evidence to ensure that you find the justice you deserve.
An accident with a tractor trailer can be a devastating experience. If your injuries were caused by the negligence of another party, then seeking compensation through a personal injury suit may be the right choice. For those who are injured, there are may be tremendous obstacles. Physical rehabilitation can take years. Working with doctors and medical professionals in hospitals and doctors’ offices can be overwhelmingly expensive and time-consuming. Those suffering from injury may not be able to work for extended periods of time. In the most extreme cases, where an incident results in death, there are potentially medical bills, funeral expenses, lost wages and lost time that families will have to endure.
Contact an Atlanta Truck Driving Accident Lawyer
Individuals who have been injured because of someone’s negligence should never be forced by the legal system to suffer silently and without the compensation they deserve. Individuals who were injured in commercial truck driving incidents should be aware that they are in a unique position. Unlike non-commercial automobile accidents, where it is usually only the negligence of individual drivers that determines liability, there are many different actors involved who may be responsible for whatever harm has been inflicted and the compensation required to address that harm. Enlisting the services of an experienced, dedicated legal team is essential to successfully navigate the legal system and get the justice you deserve. For aggressive, competent legal counsel, call the team at Schneider Hammers today.