A fully-loaded 18-wheeler can weigh up to forty tons. A typical passenger vehicle, however, weighs only two tons. Considering this major difference in size and weight, it is crucial that commercial truck drivers make safety their top priority.
Unfortunately, many trucking companies place a higher priority on saving money and moving cargo as quickly as possible, overlooking safety concerns. When safety is placed on the backburner, catastrophic and fatal accidents can occur.
Miller Law Group, PLLC, in Raleigh, North Carolina, helps victims of tractor-trailer truck accidents recover their losses.
According to a report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), nearly 4,000 large trucks were involved in fatal crashes in the United States in 2013. More than 100 of these accidents occurred in North Carolina.
Large vehicles, such as commercial, dump, garbage and logging trucks, may cause multiple vehicle pile-ups when they flip, jackknife and lose cargo in the roadway. These trucks are particularly dangerous on rural roads. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reported that approximately 61 percent of all fatal crashes involving large trucks occurred on rural roads and 26 percent on interstate highways in 2014. In North Carolina, heavy commercial truck traffic on Interstates 95, 77 and 40 causes an increasing number of accidents each year.
North Carolina law requires that every driver use reasonable care when operating commercial trucks and tractor-trailers. A driver who fails to use reasonable care is considered negligent. When a driver’s negligence causes a crash and resulting injury or death, the negligent party is obligated to compensate an injured person for his or her losses.
Commercial truck accidents are far more complex than other motor vehicle accidents. Determining who is liable for the accident can be challenging. The driver, the owner of the truck, the loaders of cargo, the truck manufacturer and the dispatching company may share responsibility.
Depending on the details of your case, compensation for a personal injury claim may include past and future medical bills and lost wages, inability to earn income in the future, scarring or disfigurement, loss of enjoyment of life, and physical and emotional pain and suffering. Compensation for a wrongful death claim may also include funeral expenses for your lost loved on, lost companionship, and lost wages.
Additionally, when a driver or trucking company acts intentionally, willfully or with reckless disregard for the safety of others, the injured party may also receive punitive damages. Punitive damages are monetary awards designed to punish the wrongdoer and discourage others from engaging in similar behavior.
At Miller Law Group, PLLC, we will fully investigate your accident and work with professionals in many industries, such as accident reconstruction experts and economists. Our team may evaluate event data recorders, which are devices located in most trucks that monitor and record pre-crash speed, distance traveled, brake use and driving style. Additionally, we will examine the wreckage and any skid marks or damage to the roadways, which are critical in proving fault.
Our investigation could reveal a number of causes for your accident, such as truck driver negligence or sleep deprivation, inadequate driver training, an overloaded or unbalanced truck, defective auto parts, or unmaintained vehicles. In 2014, these causes led to “collision with a vehicle in transport” being the most harmful factor in 73 percent of fatal crashes involving large trucks, according to the FMCSA.
Through intense preparation, we will put you in the best position to recover full compensation for your damages, whether your case is resolved in negotiations or in trial.
If you have lost a loved one in a truck crash or if you have been injured in such an accident, you need a lawyer on your side as quickly as possible. For years, people across Raleigh and beyond have put their faith in truck accident attorney Stacy Miller of Miller Law Group, PLLC. Our law firm provides tough, skilled representation for those harmed or killed in severe motor vehicle accidents.
At Miller Law Group, PLLC, we are guided by the principle of attaining justice for people who have been wronged in their personal or professional lives. To learn more about our services or to schedule a free initial consultation, contact us today by calling 919-348-4361 or by email. We look forward to making you a part of our team.