Florida Truck Accident Attorneys
A car crash or auto accident involving a tractor-trailer truck is often devastating and can cause serious personal injury and even death. A 2008 report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration showed that 37,261 people were killed and 2.3 million people were injured in motor vehicle accidents. Of those accidents, 11,441 were killed in truck accidents and 791,000 were injured in crashes involving some form of a truck. As an experienced truck accident attorney can confirm, more often than not, it is not the truck driver that is killed, but the other driver and passengers in the vehicles involved in the accidents (677 drivers versus 3,319 drivers and passengers).
WE HANDLE MAJOR TRUCK ACCIDENTS THAT HAPPEN ON LOCAL ROADS AND ALSO HIGHWAYS LIKE THE TURNPIKE, 95, 75, AND 595.
Trucking accidents result in serious injuries, including broken bones and fractures, amputations, neck and back injuries, paralysis, head injuries, and more often than not, death. We’re able to handle truck accidents in cities like Coral Springs, Boca Raton, West Palm, Fort Lauderdale, and all over Florida.
Below is a list of the top four reasons for truck accidents:
- Driver error is the major cause of truck accidents even though most truck drivers have been trained. Alcohol and drugs, along with distraction and fatigue are common reasons for truck driver to lose control and wreck their truck. Truck drivers often put in 60-70 hours a week, which then leads to diminished attention and concentration. If the driver is in an accident, the attorney can usually determine the stress level they were in by looking at their log book.
- Equipment malfunction is the second leading cause of trucking accidents, which include careless inspections, improper maintenance, worn brakes and defective parts.
- Improperly loading the trailer is another major cause of truck crashes. If not properly balanced, the weight of a load can cause a driver to lose control and cause an accident. A hurried inspection could result in a serious accident, and the driver would be responsible in court.
- Bad weather is especially dangerous for truck accidents. The oversized dimensions of the truck on a slippery road with high winds can be disastrous, and statistics show that truck accidents typically involve one or two cars. Bad weather makes the roads uncertain and hazardous, so always be extra vigilant when rain, sleet or snow is on the roads.
There are many other reasons why a truck accident might occur. Some of the common reasons include:
- Truck driver is rushing to meet a tight delivery deadline
- Tractor trailer driver is speeding or driving aggressively
- Semi driver’s failure to install mirrors and other blind spot detectors
- Truck driver does not leave enough space between other vehicles and can’t slow down in time
- Truck driver has inadequate training or fraudulent license
- Road hazards
Car and SUV drivers need to be diligent and treat larger vehicles (semi-trucks, commercial trucks, 18-wheelers, tractor-trailers) with respect. They need to drive with patience and common sense:
- Drivers, if you can’t see a truck driver’s mirrors or eyes, they can’t see you.
- Drivers should give 500-1000 feet between their vehicle and the semi-truck.
- Drivers should not tailgate (end up under the tractor’s rear underride).
- Drivers should not pull out in front of a tractor-trailer.
- Drivers should not stop quickly or dead in front of a large truck.
- Drivers should not pass on the right side of a tractor-trailer.
- Drivers should not drive in “No Zones.”
- Drivers should not drive aggressively or be distracted while driving.
- Drivers should not drive next to a tractor-trailer and match its speed.
Truck Accident Lawyer-Defending the Injured
Accidents involving a tractor-trailer truck can be very complex; you should work with a truck accident attorney that you are comfortable with. While some personal injury law firms may treat truck accidents as essentially the same as any other auto accident, we take pride in the fact that we view each case as an individual. We understand that the details of the situation are what set a truck accident case apart from other types of car accident cases, and we employ experts from a range of specialties to document the facts.
Truck accidents involving both commercial and privately owned vehicles occur every day on America’s highways. Truck drivers in corporate trucking companies are trained and follow the Compliance, Safety and Accountability regulations that are required by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Only four percent of all truck drivers are injured in truck accidents; car drivers and their passengers incur the majority of injuries. The common fact is that trucks are larger than cars, so automobile drivers involved incur more injuries and fatalities than truck drivers.
When you are working on a claim against a tractor-trailer truck company and its insurers, it’s important to keep in mind that the insurance company will have an attorney on retainer from the very beginning; why shouldn’t you also work with a truck accident lawyer to give yourself the best opportunity to win the compensation that you’re entitled to? When you’re looking for an attorney to represent you, it is good to interview several; find out what the strengths of your case are, and take advantage of the free consultation that many attorneys offer. Also, check on the track records of the attorney you’re looking to hire. While every case is different—and there is no way to guarantee a particular outcome—the truck accident lawyer you pick should be forthcoming about the cases they’ve worked on in the past. For example, we recently worked on a case that involved an accident between a commercial truck driver and the driver of an SUV, wherein both the truck driver and the driver of the SUV perished. Our experienced truck accident attorneys won a settlement from the company who owned the tractor-trailer in the amount of the policy limit of $1,000,000.
Truck Accidents Are More Likely To Cause Injury
The average car weighs about 3,000 pounds while the average truck that is carrying a large load can weigh over 70,000 pounds. Because of the difference in weight and size between trucks and passenger cars, it is more likely for those involved in trucking accidents to suffer serious or even fatal injuries.
In addition to the size and weight of these trucks, they may also be carrying hazardous materials as part of their load and they also need much more room to come to a complete stop.
In most trucking accident cases, there will be an investigation done where witnesses are interviewed, the accident scene is thoroughly reviewed, and a full police report is conducted. An experienced Florida truck accident lawyer will review all documentation and materials to assess the situation and determine fault. The trucking accident lawyer will also review the truck driver’s driving record, the company that they drive for, the training and experience of the truck driver, and the condition of the truck itself to assist in determining fault.
Both the driver and the trucking company that they drive for can be held liable. It just depends on the results of the investigation. In many instances, trucking companies will do whatever they can to avoid being held accountable. They may even claim that the drive does not work for them or that they do not own the truck involved in the accident. This is why it is necessary to consult with a qualified South Florida trucking accident attorney prior to moving forward with a truck accident lawsuit.
Consult a Florida Truck Accident Attorney
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck, tractor-trailer, or semi accident and would like to learn more about your legal rights, please contact the Law Offices of Zimmerman & Frachtman by calling (954) 509-1900 or toll free at 1(800) 886-LAWS. Our experienced 18-wheeler accident and personal injury law firm offers free consultations and charges you only if we win your case.