Recent economic forecast predictions state that interstate commercial trucking revenue will increase to approximately $1,200,000,000.00 by 2015. While this is undoubtedly great news for the trucking industry, the news isn’t so great for the drivers and passengers of cars, pickups, and SUVs that drive the same roads, since over 98% of all fatalities in truck vs car accidents consist of the drivers and/or occupants of the cars, pickups, and SUVs. If you or a family member have been injured in an collision with a semi-tractor trailer or other commercial truck, or if you’ve had a family member killed as a result of a collision with a commercial vehicle, you need to know and understand the following from a Marietta truck accident lawyer:
You Have Rights!
If you or a loved were injured or killed as a result of being struck by a semi-tractor trailer and the accident was not your fault, you have an absolute right to pursue the entity liable, whether that’s the trucking company, the driver, a company which performed maintenance on the semi, or possibly several other defendants whose conduct caused or contributed to the collision.
Investigating Trucking Accidents Is Vastly Different Than A Car Accident
After an accident, law enforcement responds to perform an initial investigation. Once the initial investigation is complete, the authorities want to clear the accident scene as quickly as possible to allow the flow of traffic to resume. This typically entails removing the vehicles, and while photographs of the scene may have been taken, weather and time can obscure if not destroy critical physical evidence such as skid marks, debris, fluid stains, etc. As such, it is critical that an Marietta truck accident lawyer is contacted to arrange for a truck accident investigator to respond and document this crucial evidence.
Commercial Carriers Are Subject To Federal Law
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (“FMCSA”) is an agency of the U.S. Department of Transportation. The FMCSA established specific rules and regulations regarding such issues as driver rest periods, vehicle maintenance, vehicle inspections, and so on. Trucking companies and their drivers are required to maintain certain records, document hours behind the wheel, etc. You can be certain that not every trucking company or driver fully complies with these requirements, and their failure to do so will be a critical aspect of your case.
Trucking Companies And Insurance
While trucking companies typically carry high level of liability insurance, keep in mind that insurance companies make money when they don’t pay claims. If you or a loved one has been hurt or killed in a collision with a commercial vehicle, you can be sure you will be contacted by an insurance adjuster who will offer you a low-ball lump-sum settlement in exchange for a full and compete release of all claims, claims which may not manifest themselves until weeks, perhaps even months after the collision.
Protect your rights! If you or a loved one has been hurt or killed as a result of a collision with a commercial vehicle, a Marietta truck accident lawyer at Morrison & Hughes can help. Your initial consultation is free, and you will pay no legal fees unless we obtain compensation for you. Call 404-800-LAWS (5297) now to arrange for your free consultation or contact us online.