Both car accidents and truck accidents can cause severe and fatal injuries, and they can occur due to similar circumstances, such as inclement weather, intoxicated driving, or human error. However, truck accidents often involve many unique factors that do not apply to car accidents, and this can affect the extent of injury and types of compensation, as well as liability.
Truck Accident Liability
Given the fact that trucks are thousands of pounds heavier than other vehicles on the road, even a slight mishap can cause serious injuries to the driver of a smaller vehicle. In fact, truck accidents have a much higher rate of fatalities than car accidents. Many truck accidents are caused by:
- Fatigued drivers
- Equipment or mechanical failures
- Oversized loads
- Failure to perform proper pre-trip safety inspection
Unlike car accidents, which usually only involve two drivers, the varied causes of truck accidents can make it very difficult to identify who is at fault. As a result, truck accident lawsuits can involve more than one defendant.
For example, a fatigued driver may have drifted out of his lane colliding with another vehicle, but the trucking company may have insisted that the driver stay on the road past his federal regulated hours of service (HOS). Additionally, mechanical or equipment failure could have occurred due to defective parts produced by the manufacturer or improper repairs by a mechanic. However, if the driver should have discovered the issue during the pre-trip inspection, the driver may be liable as well.
For those that suffer serious injuries due to a truck accident, an experienced truck accident lawyer will be able to help identify potential causes of accidents and what parties are at fault.
Because the damages caused by trucking accidents are so severe, trucking companies usually carry extensive insurance coverage. It may go without saying that the compensation awarded to injured victims in these types of accidents is often significantly higher than that of a typical car accident.
However, this also means that the insurance companies will do anything they can to reduce this payment, and any shared fault on the part of the plaintiff may significantly reduce damage awards.
Although not every insurance company is unethical, those injured in a severe accident should assume that an insurance provider is hoping to gather information that they can use to reduce the settlement amount. For those injured in a truck accident, protect your rights with the following tips:
- Refuse to talk to the defendant’s insurance provider
- Do not accept any insurance settlements upfront
- Consult with an attorney to determine the amount of compensation you are entitled to
A skilled truck accident lawyer can handle all communication with an insurance company and evaluate any settlement offers to ensure it will cover all current and future medical costs, recovery expenses, and any loss incurred by loss of work time.
Cherry Hill Truck Accident Lawyers at DiTomaso Law Represent Those Injured in Car and Truck Accidents
If you have been injured in a car or truck accident, contact an experienced Cherry Hill truck accident lawyer today at DiTomaso Law. Dealing with devastating injuries can be overwhelming. Let us handle the details so you can focus on recovering. For a free consultation, call us today at 856-414-0010 or contact us online. With offices in Philadelphia and Cherry Hill, New Jersey, we proudly serve clients from the surrounding areas.