Truck Accidents

 

some of our truck accident results:

$925,000

A 22 year old Harlem man was paralyzed from the waist down when a van made a left turn in front of the motorcycle he was riding. Weeks later he died as a result of a blood clot caused by his injuries. The money from the case was invested for his infant child and a child born subsequent to his death.

$350,000

A civil service employee was driving a car that was struck by another car that had crossed over from the oncoming lane of traffic and then struck from the rear by a truck, resulting in a broken thigh and a broken shoulder.

Trucks, truck drivers and trucking companies are important parts of the U.S. economy. Among other things, they play a significant role in transporting materials and products purchased and enjoyed by consumers on a daily basis. They also are responsible for much destruction.  According to recent U.S. Government data, one person will die and 9 will be injured on U.S. roadways in an accident involving a large truck (over 10,000 lbs gross vehicle weight) every 2.4 hours. The overwhelming majority of those who die and are injured will not be in the truck. If you have suffered harm in a truck accident you need a competent truck accident lawyer. At Friedman & Simon L.L.P. we are here to help you. We know that truck accidents differ from other types of accidents. We have successfully helped victims of truck accidents and understand what needs to be done.


Common Causes of Truck Accidents


Driver Fatigue
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulates the hours of service for interstate truck drivers. Present regulations allow drivers to be on duty for up to 11 hours in a 14 hour period. The minimum time off between periods is 10 hours. Drivers are required to record and maintain logs of their hours of duty. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that truck driver fatigue contributes to 40% of truck accidents. According to a May 2011 study contracted for by the U.S. Dept. of Transportation there is a consistent increase in crash odds as driving time increases with the highest odds in the 11th hour of driving. The study found that breaks from driving time reduced crash odds by 32-51%.
It is important for your truck accident lawyer to review driver logs, gas, meal & toll receipts, any history of log violations and any available truck tracking data to determine if driver fatigue may have been a contributing factor to the accident.Improper Maintenance & Repair
According to the U.S. Federal Highway Administration, in 2009 large trucks drove almost 11,000,000 miles on U.S. roadways. There were over 2,000,000 roadside inspections of those trucks. 21.7% were ordered out of service for violations. The FMCSA provides regulations governing inspections, maintenance and repairs. These regulations require Motor Carriers to have their parts and accessories in proper operating condition at all times.

While the FMCSA requires periodic and annual inspections, far too often Motor Carriers fail to comply with federal regulations governing maintenance, repair and record keeping. To appreciate the importance of these regulations consider that a fully-loaded 80,000-pound truck traveling 65 miles per hour requires at least 525 feet to stop, which is 66 percent more distance than most automobiles, which require about 316 feet when traveling at 65 miles per hour to stop safely.  With over 500,000 interstate carriers, most of whom having less than 7 trucks, compliance with federal regulations governing such things as tire tread depth, brake tubing, hoses and control valves, steering and suspension systems and protection against shifting and falling cargo are important factors in reducing the frequency of accidents resulting in death and devastating injury. Your truck accident lawyer at Friedman & Simon, L.L.P. will obtain and review maintenance records, repair records and inspection reports to determine whether improper maintenance or repair contributed to the happening of the accident.


Distracted Driving
In an analysis of 120,000 accidents involving large trucks in which a person was injured or killed the FMCSA and NHTSA found that 28% of those accidents involved inattentive or distracted truck drivers as a critical reason for the happening of the accident.
On October 27, 2010 the FMCSA enacted a rule which prohibits commercial truck drivers from texting, emailing or instant-messaging or reading a text, email or instant message while driving. It found that those truck drivers who do are 23.2 times more likely to be involved in a critical safety event (e.g. crash, near-crash, unintentional lane deviation). Texting drivers took their eyes off the road for an average of 4.6 seconds. At 55 mph, a texting truck driver would travel more than the length of an entire football field without looking at the road.
On January 3, 2012 the FMCSA banned commercial truck drivers from reaching for or holding a mobile phone while driving. This ban includes dialing by pressing more than a single button.Other Common Causes of Truck accidentsThe FMCSA and NHTSA found that the following are major causes or contributors to accidents involving large trucks:
Brake problems:
Traffic flow interruption;
Prescription drug use
Speeding;
Unfamiliarity with roadway;
Roadway problems;
Traffic control devices
Over- the-counter drug use
Inadequate surveillance
Who may be held liable for the truck accident?After completing an investigation, your truck accident lawyer at Friedman & Simon, L.L.P. must determine who may be held liable for the accident  and why. Some possible defendants include:

  1. The truck driver;
  2. The trucking company;
  3. The owner of the tractor;
  4. The owner of the trailer;
  5. The freight broker;
  6. The freight shipper;
  7. The manufacturer of the tractor or trailer.


The following is a list of the theories of liability that your truck accident lawyer at Friedman & Simon, L.L.P. may consider:

 

  1. Negligence;
  2. Agency;
  3. Vicarious liability;
  4. Negligent entrustment;
  5. Negligent hiring , retention, training and supervision;
  6. Negligent maintenance or repair;
  7. Products liability.

If you have been involved in an accident involving a truck you need an experienced and competent truck accident lawyer who is capable of conducting the proper investigation, familiar with trucking regulations and well versed in the possible theories of liability in truck accident cases. Call, email or chat with Friedman & Simon, L.L.P. today to discuss your truck accident case.