Those who have the great misfortune of being involved in an accident with a truck or other large commercial vehicle often sustain truly profound and sometimes fatal injuries. The simple fact of the matter is that the differences in height and weight between massive motor carriers and conventional passenger cars are so large that the laws of physics can make positive outcomes unlikely.
Sadly, incidents of this nature are all too often caused by the negligent actions of trucking company operators, truck drivers, vehicle equipment manufacturers and others. When this happens, Floridians owe it to themselves and their families to aggressively seek fair financial compensation and accountability from responsible parties. A Clearwater truck accident lawyer can be a victim’s strongest ally in the fight for justice following a tragic event of this type. Call and schedule a consultation with an injury attorney in Clearwater today to discuss the first steps you should take.
Truck Accident Dynamics
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), in 2014 a total of 3,660 individuals lost their lives in accidents involving large trucks or buses, with most of those fatalities befalling occupants of passenger vehicles. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reported that in the same year, an additional 88,000 large truck accidents resulted in injury.
The dangers of commercially-sized trucks are manifest–these vehicles can be very difficult to drive, as they are so massive and weigh so much. They require a special license that comes with training geared specifically toward controlling these huge vehicles. Additionally, because they have 18 wheels, they are at a significantly higher risk for a blowout that could cause them to lose control than another, smaller passenger vehicle.
Also, the fact that they are so long makes it much harder for other vehicles to be visible to the driver. The blind spots on these trucks are massive, and it can be very dangerous for a small vehicle to be in places where the driver does not have the right angle to see them.
Large trucks are also at risk for tipping over because of the weight distribution and their relative length. Also, because they are so heavy, when they do collide with other vehicles, the damage is often very severe.
Common Accident Scenarios
It is important to note that truck drivers across the country are governed by a comprehensive set of regulations and licensing rules designed to protect everyone who shares America’s roadways.
Even so, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has indicated that roughly one-third of truck accidents each year are attributable, at least in part, to errors made by those same drivers.
Fatigue, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, distracted driving and simple errors in judgment routinely produce violent, often deadly crashes. Improper vehicle maintenance, uneven cargo loads, and equipment malfunctions are also among the hazards which many motorists unwittingly face when on the roads alongside heavy trucks.
The potential causes of serious truck accidents in Florida are extremely varied, and that is why a Clearwater truck accident attorney must commence a thorough investigation into the facts of every client’s case.
One reason for this is that there may be multiple parties from which compensation may be pursued, some of which may initially seem relatively far removed from the incident itself, but can be shown to have played a role in its occurrence.
While truck drivers themselves can certainly be found liable for their own negligent acts and omissions behind the wheel, other possible defendants in a truck accident case could include:
- Trucking company managers and owners
- Truck and component manufacturers
- Freight line maintenance contractors
- Cargo loading personnel
Given the breath and complexity presented in truck accident cases, it is vital that a truck accident lawyer in Clearwater explore every possible angle and examine each potentially responsible party. Ultimately, the overriding objective is to help victims receive the financial resources they and their families need in order to begin the arduous process of recovery.
Reasons to File a Claim
The severity of injuries and losses routinely resulting from heavy truck accidents cannot be denied. Traumatic brain injuries, burns, bone fractures, spinal cord harm and death are among the catastrophic effects of such events, and all can be suffered by passenger car occupants, pedestrians, construction workers and motorcyclists alike.
Total costs stemming from accidents of this sort have exceeded $87 billion annually, according to FMCSA estimates, making it more important than ever for victims to secure diligent, zealous legal advocacy for financial recovery which could encompass medical costs, lost wages, therapy expenses and more.
Consulting With An Attorney
Accident victims are afforded the right and the opportunity to pursue substantial amounts of financial compensation in the aftermath of a truck collision. However, that is not to say that the road to monetary recovery is always a smooth one.
A Clearwater truck accident lawyer will work collaboratively with a network of medical experts, engineers and support staff to vigorously advance each client’s case. If you would like to discover how an attorney with our firm can help protect your family’s future, contact us today.