Commercial trucks and passenger vehicles share the road every day, often with no issues. However, careless 18-wheeler operators have the potential to cause severe accidents when traveling in these large multi-ton vehicles. Any collision involving a commercial truck could result in life-altering or even fatal injuries to individuals in passenger vehicles.
If you or a loved one was harmed in a semi-truck crash, reach out to a skilled personal injury lawyer right away. You may be able to hold the responsible party liable through a lawsuit. A Sunset Hills truck accident attorney could provide valuable insight and represent you throughout the legal process.
Common Forms of Truck Driver Error
Truck drivers are required to have a commercial driver’s license (CDL), and throughout the trucking industry, it is generally considered standard practice for drivers to have at least two years of driving experience before they are entrusted with a large tractor-trailer or big rig.
Drivers of trucks are expected to account for the inherent challenges in driving a truck, but unfortunately, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has estimated that driver-related factors play a role in causing 31 percent of truck accidents. Some common reasons for collisions involving trucks include but are not limited to:
- Distracted driving
- Drowsy driving
- Intoxicated/impaired driving
- Texting and driving
- Prescription or over-the-counter drug use
- Illegal driving maneuvers
- Insufficient familiarity with the truck
- Unbalanced cargo
If a truck driver commits an error, violates FMCSA rules, or breaks traffic laws, an experienced accident attorney could help victims or surviving family members pursue a claim to obtain compensation for any injuries that result.
Holding a Trucking Company Responsible After a Collision in Sunset Hills
Through driver error is the most common cause of truck wrecks, trucking companies may also bear some responsibility for an accident. Under Missouri Revised Statutes § 537.600, employers may be held liable for the actions of their employees. Additionally, trucking companies may be directly liable for negligent management practices, such as:
- Improper training of employees
- Failure to follow licensing laws
- Improper vehicle maintenance
- Failure to conduct background checks
- Failure to check driving records
- Disregard of rest hour requirements
A dedicated attorney could help an injured party build a strong accident case against a negligent trucking company.
Compensation Available for Truck Accident Victims
In a truck accident case, injured parties may seek compensation for many economic and non-economic losses, such as lost wages, medical bills, loss of quality of life, pain, and suffering. However, there are many factors that may influence the amount of compensation awarded, including the severity of the claimant’s injuries.
Understanding Pure Comparative Fault
State courts use pure comparative fault when determining liability in truck accident cases. When a collision occurs, the court assigns fault based on each party’s role in the accident. Depending on the situation, the court may assign some fault to the injured party.
If a plaintiff is deemed partially to blame for an accident, their compensation will be reduced by the allocated proportion of the blame. For example, if the claimant is deemed 30 percent responsible, they will only receive 70 percent of the available compensation. A seasoned lawyer could help an injured party recover the maximum amount of compensation in a truck wreck claim.
Get Help for a Sunset Hills Truck Accident Attorney
Truck accidents are terrifying events that often lead to severe injuries and financial losses. Dealing with medical treatments and communicating with insurance adjusters can be overwhelming.
Fortunately, you do not have to go through this alone. A Sunset Hills truck accident lawyer could help you navigate the legal process. Contact our firm today to schedule a consultation and discuss your case.