Steps Truckers Need To Take After Being Involved In An Accident

Safety is your top priority as a trucker. There are many things to think about when an accident occurs.

What is the process of insurance claims? Who is responsible? Who will pay your medical bills When can you resume your job? It is a difficult situation to say the least.

Every personal injury case has one basic principle: Someone’s negligence caused harm to another person. The “liable” or “at fault” party is the negligent party.

Truck accident cases can have multiple liable parties. Truck accident lawyers are trained to identify the parties responsible for victims’ losses and expenses and pursue maximum compensation from all sources.

Who is responsible for a truck accident?

Trucking companies are generally responsible for accidents caused or caused by truck drivers, provided that the driver is available at all times and acting within the scope of their employment.

If the driver was an independent contractor

-If the driver deliberately caused the accident

-If the driver was issued a ticket

Did you receive a ticket on the spot of the accident? If you break the law by speeding or driving under the influence, as well as violating company regulations, you are more likely to be held responsible.

Employed by a company, an injured victim will likely go after the employer and not you. Trucking companies are more likely to have commercial insurance policies that pay higher payout limits.

Trucking companies could be responsible for an accident in many different ways. Did these employers not properly service their trucks? They may have set unrealistic goals for truckers that forced them to drive in dangerous conditions or exceed federal limits for driving hours. They hired irresponsible drivers and didn’t do background checks. Did they not provide adequate training? There are many possibilities and a truck accident lawyer can investigate them all.

These are some other parties that could be liable in a truck accident.

Other Motorists

Truck drivers can be troubled by drivers driving small cars. Was it an aggressive driver who cut you off? Is traffic suddenly at a standstill? There are many factors that play into this.

Truck manufacturers

Manufacturers of auto parts are responsible for producing safe vehicles. The manufacturing company could be held responsible if a defective part causes an accident. Truck accident lawyers, crash reconstruction specialists, and investigators are available to help you solve this problem.

Fleet Mechanics

To ensure that trucks are safe for use on the roads, fleet mechanics inspect them routinely. It can quickly become a matter-of-life and death if a mechanic doesn’t notice a problem. They may be held responsible for any accident-related damages.

Whoever loaded the truck

Was cargo thrown off the truck, causing an accident? Was the truck’s shifting weight from an unsecure load contributing to the rollover? It’s crucial to know who loaded the truck, and for what company. Unsecured cargo may result in accidents that shippers or loaders are responsible for.

Truck drivers are protected under federal law from retaliation. Reporting hazardous work conditions to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is not grounds for firing. If you notice shady practices, speak up. It could save someone’s life.

Other Causes

Accelerating

You might be tempted, if you have to meet a tight deadline to get your work done, to exceed the speed limit. Do not try to push your luck. Over 113,000 Texas auto accidents were caused by “failure to control speeds” last year. 475 were fatal.

Distracted driving

This includes snacking, looking at a map, using the phone, and many other activities. Never forget to check your blind spots and don’t engage in any activity that could take your eyes off of the road or your hands from the wheel.

Tired driving

Long-haul truck drivers are often subject to exhaustion. FMCSA urges you to ensure your logbooks are up-to-date, and to allow for sufficient rest breaks. Did you know that drunk driving can be just as dangerous as driving while drowsy?

Driving while intoxicated

Houston was home to 75 DUI deaths in 2020. Additional 2,280 injuries were caused by drunk driving. Although trucking companies are required to perform routine drug testing, they sometimes don’t follow this rule. Do not resort to alcohol or other drugs to deal with long-haul stress.

Mechanical Problems

Large trucks can be affected by tire blowouts, faulty brakes and shifting cargo. They require regular inspections. Trucking companies must conduct these inspections and maintain their fleet to ensure everyone is safe and sound.

Environmental Factors

Even if your driving record is safe and reliable, it’s possible to be struck by unexpected curves, debris, or weather conditions that are not expected. These factors increase the chance of a truck-related accident.

What should I do after a truck accident?

You now know who could be responsible for a truck crash, but how can you prove it?

Call 911

Many truck accidents leave behind severe injuries. Even if there are no injuries, it is important to call the police to report the accident and to take photos of the scene to create an accident report.

Your company should have a process for creating your own accident report. The report should include as much detail as possible. This includes the time, location, weather conditions and date of the accident. Contact information and information about insurance for any other parties involved. Unless an officer directs, do not leave the accident scene.

Exchange contact information and insurance details with all parties. 

Take photos of the vehicles and surroundings. Do not make a statement, do not admit fault and don’t speculate. Although it sounds simple, it can be difficult to follow.

It is important to preserve all evidence as quickly as possible. Truck accident lawyers are skilled in finding every piece of evidence available, including:

-Photos of the accident scene, and property damaged

-Eyewitness testimony

-Police reports

-Truck black boxes. These devices track information such as the speed of the truck, the length of the driver’s stay on the road and the time they used their brakes.

-Dashcam footage and other surveillance videos

Logbooks and records of trucking companies

-Cell phone records

-Medical records

Subpoenas enable your truck accident lawyer to access logbooks, truck GPS system records and cell phone records. These records can be used to support your Houston truck accident case and help you maximize your settlement.

Seek out a doctor immediately

It is crucial to seek immediate medical attention after a truck accident. Even if you were not taken to an ambulance immediately after a truck accident, it is important that you see a doctor and continue any medical treatment.

The treatment process reveals details about the injuries you sustained in the accident and how they will affect your daily life. Accident victims who try to ignore their pains and aches are often unsuccessful. Sometimes symptoms of serious injuries can not be noticed until several days after an accident. Insurance adjusters may use “gaps” in treatment to deny your claim. Don’t delay.

Lawyers are connected to therapists, investigators and other experts through their networks. They work together to help victims and assist them in their recovery. We have you covered, whether you need xrays, physical therapy or a rental car. The best part is that you won’t have to pay anything out of pocket. Your lawyer can coordinate payments with different providers through liens or letters of protection. This is a part of the truck accident settlement. These bills will be settled automatically, so you don’t have to worry.

Trucking companies should offer you insurance coverage. However, you will still need to report an accident. Be careful! Although insurance adjusters may seem friendly, they will twist your words to accuse you for exaggerating the losses. They will ask for a recorded statement and any statements you make can be used against you.

The insurance company is not required to record a statement.

Most accidents claims are settled out of court during negotiations. If you are unable to reach an agreement with a mediator, you can move on to litigation.

Contact a local truck accident lawyer

It is best to contact your truck accident lawyer for any further information. Although insurance companies won’t be on your side, a truck accident lawyer could be an invaluable ally.