Commercial Truck Accident Liability Cases: What You Need to Know

Commercial truck accidents present liabilities for several parties, and an investigation determines which parties are at fault. There are several circumstances that could arise, including faulty repairs, defective truck parts, and failures by the trucking company. According to the law, the trucking companies must enforce federal regulations and prevent liabilities that cause accidents such as exhausted driving. When starting a claim, victims review each probability with an attorney.  

There Could Be More Than One Defendant

In a 18-wheeler accident, not all cases have just one defendant. In fact, many of the cases could have two or three defendants according to what parties contributed to the accident. First, the driver must follow federal regulations, including stopping at weigh stations during their travels to test the weight of the trailer.

The trucking company is responsible for maintaining the trucks, and the mechanics perform repairs. If any of these parties caused a defect or liability that caused the accident, the parties are liable for the victim’s losses. Victims who need more information about commercial truck accident liability get started by consulting an attorney.  

Was the Commercial Driver Under the Influence?

Law enforcement officers interview all parties involved in the accident, and if a commercial driver appears to be intoxicated or under the influence, the officers test the driver. If the driver fails field sobriety tests or a breathalyzer test, the officers take the driver into custody. For commercial drivers, the blood-alcohol content reading is lowered to 0.04%. If convicted, the driver loses their CDL and faces criminal penalties.  

Did the Driver Violate Federal Regulations?

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration requires all commercial drivers to maintain a log of all driving hours, and the log is reviewed for compliance after an accident. If the driver is guilty of exhausted driving, this is a violation of federal laws, and the trucking company and the driver are liable for the victim’s injuries and monetary losses. 

Don’t Talk to Anyone—Ever!

Attorneys advise their clients to refrain from speaking to anyone by their own lawyers about the accident. The insurer or parties representing the trucking company or the driver try to contact the victim to get the individuals to agree to a low-ball settlement to reduce their own financial losses. If the victim agrees to any type of agreement, this could derail any chance of getting adequate compensation for the injuries and losses. 

Did You Commit Traffic Violations?

Many defense attorneys look for any options for dismissing the personal injury claims, and a reduction of the monetary award happens if the victim violated traffic laws. The court lowers the monetary award according to rates applied to these infractions, and if the rate makes the person more than at least half to blame for the accident, no award is provided. The court dismisses the claim, and the claimant is responsible for their own losses, medical expenses, and cannot get compensation from any additional options.  

An 18-wheeler accident presents a greater risk of serious injuries because of the speed and weight of the commercial vehicle. When investigating the accident, officers and authorities follow more complex steps since there is a multitude of reasons for the accidents, and all bases must be assessed. Trucking companies have insurers that evaluate insurance claims and look for possible alternatives to redirect blame. By hiring an attorney, victims avoid mistakes that lower the compensation the individuals could receive. 

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