If you or someone that you love was injured as a result of a trucking accident, contacting Cellino Law would be the right choice to make. A Garden City truck accident lawyer from our firm can help you file your claim against a trucking company, truck driver, or even both. We can also assist with identifying parties that could be held liable as a result of injuries you have sustained. If there was negligence on the part of the truck driver, they should be held responsible for what has happened to you. To prove negligence, it is necessary to show that they were behaving in a manner that broke rules that the average CDL driver would have never done.
There are several options that you can consider including filing a claim up against a trucking company, specifically because of their employee who is acting on behalf of that business. There could be a safety policy that they failed to implement, which may include not only providing regular maintenance inspections on the trucks but also looking at the driving records of the truck drivers that they hire, which can lead to defining how negligent they have been.
As for the company, they can be held liable for the injuries that you have sustained. In most cases, these businesses will have very high limits on their insurance policies, and this means that paying out claims is something that they can do. When you speak with our Garden City personal injury attorneys, we can help you decide on which option would be best suited for your situation.
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How To Determine The Cause Of The Truck Accident
There should be an investigation regarding any type of crash involving trucks that are in or around Garden City, but there are numerous factors that must be considered before this can happen which may include:
Truck Driver Negligence
Like car collisions, accidents involving commercial trucks can be caused by negligence on the part of the driver. When looking at truck collisions, these often occur when the basic rules of driving have been violated, leading to unsafe maneuvers which may include failing to yield when someone has the right-of-way, changing lanes improperly, or just simply running through an obvious stop sign. Truck accidents that are the fault of the driver could be caused if they were not paying close enough attention when looking ahead or even making a turn.
The following actions will demonstrate truck driver negligence:
The FMCSA, which is a governing body for the trucking industry, states that speeding is one of the leading causes of truck accidents. When over speeding occurs, they may not be able to stop before the accident happens when conditions such as heavy traffic or extreme weather are present. When they are not able to slow down, they cannot prevent a collision. Speeding, which may also involve tailgating, creates the perfect storm for what could be a disastrous rear-end collision.
This can also be called distraction/inattention, which refers to truck accidents that are caused by being distracted. This type of driving often involves a person texting while driving, and this can prove to be a very serious problem. Several regulations that are in place are designed to thwart this problem, and but the issue lingers and consequences can occur.
Fatigued Or Drowsy Driving
When this occurs, truck drivers are often driving substantial numbers of hours without getting proper rest. According to the FMCSA, this is about a violation of the Hours of Service Laws. Some instances may be the direct result of the employer expecting them to drive longer hours which are related to trying to meet a deadline, which leads to skipping breaks, naps, or even resting for a proper amount of hours.
This is another form of negligent behavior that is similar to drunk driving, and if they are drinking, they often must undergo alcohol consumption tests to maintain their ability to drive. There are many accidents caused by truck drivers that have been under the influence of methamphetamines, cocaine, or other drugs.
Using these substances regularly may help them drive for many hours at a time without rest. The use of over-the-counter or prescription medications may have side effects that can impair their driving, and some of them are not aware that this is happening. This is the least common scenario, whereas drunk driving is much more common.
If a truck jackknifes – which is where the cab and the trailer of the truck look like a sliding folding knife – or they could have a rollover accident which will lead investigators to determine if this was caused by what is called a cargo shift. Effectively, this is when cargo is not properly secured in the back, and because of this it can break free or just move around. The center of gravity of the truck will be altered dramatically, causing the truck to jackknife or rollover, ultimately leading to crashes because the truck is out of control.
Another possibility is that cargo is let loose, breaking free from restraints, and this can fall out onto the road causing cars to swerve to avoid colliding with the cargo, and the truck, which often leads to some type of a crash. It’s even worse when hazardous materials are spilling all over the road, and this can cause significant damage, contaminate waterways, and will potentially lead to personal injuries.
Although trucks can have issues that can lead to accidents, these are far less common than those caused by human error. This could be related to the truck braking system, wheels, lighting, powertrains, coupling systems, or other crucial parts including the tires that could go flat. In 2010, a study was done that revealed that over 50% of crashes that involved trucks had violated FMCSA regulations, and of that 30% or more had problems related to trucks that should simply have never been on the road.
Although accidents can occur, especially when faulty manufacturing for parts compromises the entire system, it can also be that the truck is not properly maintained.
In some cases, accidents can become more probable because of poor road conditions. Trees and vegetation can obscure signs, potholes, and other problems on the road that can cause the drivers to lose control. Government authorities, as well as local contractors, are responsible for making sure the road is safe and can be held liable for accidents that occur because of their negligence.
Dangerous Work Zones
There are designed protocols that contractors should follow when doing road maintenance, for example, they have to provide some type of a warning for motorists so that they will be able to slow down in time. There should also be plenty of space between the workers on the road and the oncoming traffic that will only be a few feet away. Barriers should also be installed in certain circumstances. Contractors need to take the time to set up these work zones properly, allowing drivers to understand what the new speed limit is, have time to slow down their truck, and also anticipate the type of traffic speeds that are up ahead.
If you would like to pursue some type of a personal injury case against a truck driver, trucking company, or even a contractor, you can do this, as well as go after those responsible for the loading of cargo, faulty truck parts, and the supplier and manufacturer of components that have become faulty.
By contacting Cellino Law, you will get access to a team of lawyers that have experience in dealing with truck accidents that will be ready to provide you with the assistance that you need and find the liable parties.
Common Injuries In Accidents Involving Trucks
When comparing trucks and cars, there is no comparison concerning their size and weight. For example, a semi-truck can be loaded up with 80,000 pounds, or a car may just weigh 3,000 pounds. When you have a crash that involves a car and a truck, people that are in the car is going to suffer the most injuries, and are sometimes killed.
Trucks can cause very serious injuries, and that is why the government requires that trucking companies have insurance policies that have extremely high limits. Cellino Law provides legal representation for truck accident victims that have had very serious injuries such as:
- Brain injury and traumatic bleeding
- Broken bones
- Emotional trauma
- Facial injuries
- Head injuries, including concussion
- Internal injuries
- Loss of limbs and amputations
- Spinal cord and back injuries
Those that do sustain these types of injuries are victims of accidents that may need specialized treatment, lifelong care, and often will need rehabilitation services. The attorneys at our law firm will be able to help you and your family get fully compensated for not just injuries, but also the damages you may have suffered, after experiencing this accident.
Federal Regulations Related To Large Trucks
Large tractor-trailer vehicles are going to pose a very large danger to most motorists. These large trucks have prompted the government to create very stringent regulations that all truck operators must comply with. They have stated that the maximum load for any truck is only going to be 80,000 pounds.
There is also a limit on how many hours a truck driver can drive each day and throughout the week. Those that own trucks are also required to comply with a stringent schedule, provide maintenance checks, do repairs where necessary, and handle any issues that are related to driving the truck. These regulations are designed to protect both motorists and truck drivers simultaneously.
Unfortunately, companies that are responsible for these trucks and their drivers often ignore these regulations and try to pressure their drivers to avoid complying because of deadlines and their desire to maximize profits. Here are a few illegal practices:
- Overloading the trailers
- Failing to take required breaks
- Exceeding the number of hours stipulated by the law
- Driving while fatigued
- Driving in extreme weather conditions
Best Steps To Take If You Are Involved In A Truck Accident
If someone you know has been in a truck accident in Garden City, New York, that involved a commercial vehicle or a large truck, certain steps must be taken to protect yourself and also the claim that you would like to file.
Call 911 Right Away
If you have sustained injuries as a result of a truck accident, or even if you have not, you need to inform the police about what has happened. An official report needs to be filed and this can be very useful later when pursuing compensation by filing an insurance claim or by going after the trucking firm, or truck driver, as part of a personal injury lawsuit. When you call 911, this will summon emergency responders, along with the police, and they will be there at the scene of the accident.
Seek Medical Attention Immediately
Some individuals will sustain very severe injuries as a result of being involved in a trucking accident. It is so crucial for these individuals to allow paramedics to examine them, and you may be taken to an emergency room after the accident. Some injuries may not show up right away, for example, internal injuries, and brain injuries, may not show up for quite some time which is why you need to have a full body examination.
Document Everything At The Scene Of The Accident
To do this, you need to take pictures or shoot videos, of the scene of the accident. This can preserve evidence, something that can help you when filing claims against these individuals that may have injured you or the vehicle you were driving. It is just beneficial to do so whenever you have suffered in this manner.
Exchange Your Contact Information
you need to ask the truck driver for their contact information which will include their name and a way to get a hold of them. You should also find out the information regarding their employer. If they have it, get their insurance information as well. It is also important to give them your personal information.
Collect All Witness Information
There are bound to be witnesses that will be at the scene of the crash, or there may be others that showed up later to help, all of which you should pursue to get their contact information. Once you have an attorney, this information can be used to get statements directly from them.
Contact The Insurance Company
Notifying the insurance company is something you should do right away. It is important to tell them that a truck was involved in the accident.
Contact A Garden City Truck Accident Lawyer
If this did happen in New York, then you should consult with an attorney that is skilled in handling cases like this that involve truck accidents.
How To Obtain A Lawyer That Can Handle Your Truck Accident Claim
The Department of Motor Vehicles has stated that about 5,000 people will lose their lives annually, in New York, because of truck accidents. It is the size of the trucks, and their enormous weight, which can lead to accidents becoming very serious. This is why it is so important to look at the damage caused by cars as opposed to by trucks.
If you are in a truck accident, your lawyer is going to help you receive some type of compensation for the damages that you are owed. Here are just a few of the damages that a Garden City truck accident lawyer can assist you in recovering:
- Pain-and-suffering which may involve mental anguish or emotional distress
- Permanent disability
- Loss of income or earnings
- Vehicle or home modifications
- Property damage or loss
- Medical expenses now and in the future
- Rehabilitation and physical therapy expenditures
Who Exactly Is Responsible If The Accident Is Caused By A Truck That Was Malfunctioning?
Each situation is going to be a little bit different. The company, driver, and the truck owner will likely all be held responsible. Regarding the owner of the truck or the company, they can be held liable if proper inspections were not done regularly. Looking at the truck and its defects, especially the tires, they can determine whether or not the manufacturer can also be held liable.
Is It Reasonable To Speak With The Truck Company’s Insurance Provider Once The Accident Has Occurred?
Communicating with the truck company’s insurance provider should be done only to state you have legal representation. It is important to share this information with your attorney, especially if the insurance company is currently trying to speak with you. You should never sign anything, or agree to anything, in the absence of your lawyer because it may compromise your ability to get the maximum amount of compensation. There should be a single lawyer handling the negotiations, and the communication with the insurance company, which is why you need to find an attorney that can do all of this and more.
How Cellino Law’s Garden City Truck Accident Lawyers Can Help
Cellino Law employs only professional attorneys that have extensive experience regarding truck accident cases. We will work with you to gather all of the necessary evidence that can help create a solid case. Connecting interviews with witnesses, taking video footage, and photos of the scene are ways that you can help reconstruct the entire incident.
There are so many truck crashes that result in injuries that can be catastrophic for those that experience them. Receiving financial compensation is why they should be speaking with these legal professionals. You should never have to do this on your own as you are trying to prove the negligence of the truck driver or company that has caused you so many problems. It’s easy to file a personal injury lawsuit as it can enable you to pay for medical expenses, damages, and loss of earnings.