In need of a San Marcos semi-truck accident lawyer?
Because of their huge size and weight, commercial trucks are especially dangerous when they are involved in truck accidents. Weighing up to 80,000 pounds, semi-trucks take a much greater distance to stop than do other vehicles. Truck versus passenger vehicle collisions may cause serious injuries or fatalities to the occupants of the smaller vehicles. If you or your loved one has been injured in a truck accident, the San Marcos semi-truck accident lawyers at our law firm are experienced in helping victims to recover damages for their losses.
Frequency of semi-truck accidents
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reports that 3,986 people were killed in semi-truck accidents in 2016. The number of truck accident fatalities during the year was 27 percent higher than the number of people who died in 2009. Of those who were killed, 2,642 were the occupants of passenger vehicles, 637 were motorcyclists, bicyclists or pedestrians and 660 were semi-truck occupants.
What are the common causes of San Marcos semi-truck accidents?
Semi-truck accidents may be caused by multiple factors. Truck accidents may be caused by any of the following common factors:
- Unfamiliarity with the roads
- Driving too fast for the conditions
- Illegal maneuvers
- Following traffic too closely
- Improper lane changes
- Drunk or drugged driving
- Defective truck parts
- Poorly maintained roads
- Poorly maintained brakes or tires
- Driver fatigue
- Distracted driving
Depending on the particular causes of a truck accident, the driver, his or her employer and other parties may all share liability.
What happens when the truck drivers are at fault?
Many semi-truck accidents are caused by driver-related issues. When a truck driver causes an accident, both the driver and the employer for whom the driver is working may be liable. Trucking carriers may be vicariously liable for the negligence of their drivers while the drivers are working. In most cases involving an at-fault driver, the employers will ultimately be responsible for the payment of damages.
Third parties that might be liable
Other parties may also be liable, including the following:
- Brokers or shippers that negligently retain problematic trucking companies
- Companies that repair or maintain the trucks
- Designers and manufacturers of defective parts
- Loaders who improperly load the trucks or that fail to secure the loads
- Truck leasing company
- Government agencies if the roads were poorly maintained
How fault is determined in San Marcos semi-truck accidents
The fault determination in a semi-truck accident is a complex process. Because there are potentially several parties who may be liable, experienced San Marcos truck accident lawyers thoroughly examine the evidence and may use the help of experts to identify all of the potential defendants. This is important so that their clients might recover the maximum amount of damages for their economic and non-economic losses.
Truck accident injuries
Large trucks have much higher ground clearance, which can cause passenger vehicles to slide underneath them in accidents. Because of this issue combined with the weight and size differences of semi-trucks versus smaller passenger vehicles, it is common for people to suffer catastrophic injuries. Some of the types of injuries that people may suffer include the following:
- Crush injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Skull fractures
- Thoracic injuries
- Extremities fractures
- Severe lacerations
When you should contact a San Marcos semi-truck accident lawyer
Contacting an attorney as soon after a truck accident is important. Insurance companies often aggressively defend against these cases because of the high policy limits that are often involved. Attorneys may anticipate the defenses that might be raised and build strong cases showing clear liability. California also has a two-year statute of limitations in place for personal injury claims. If you do not file your case within that time period, you will not be able to recover damages for your losses. Contact the experienced San Marcos truck accident lawyers to schedule your consultation.
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