You’re driving over Pacheco Pass when a semi starts to veer into your lane. He obviously doesn’t see you. You honk, but the driver can’t figure out where it’s coming from. He continues to merge into you. You get over as far as you can. You avoid the truck, but you slam into the center divider. You hear the concrete scrape along the side of the car, you lose control. You start to flip. You’re helpless now. You hear glass shattering, metal crunching and scraping, and the next thing you know, you’re in the hospital. You’re grateful your family isn’t looking for a Central Coast wrongful death lawyer.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration says there are roughly 500,000 truck accidents per year.
That can mean big rigs, semis, tractor trailer, haulers, 18-wheelers, etc. If you, or someone you love, is injured in a truck accident, you probably have questions. Well, we’re here to help.
When cars and trucks get into wrecks, the cars seldom come out on top. Commercial trucks weigh between 10,000-33,001+ pounds. By comparison, a pickup truck, SUV, or minivan comes in at less than 6,000 pounds. Commercial trucks are all over the place. They’re on every highway, interstate, and major road throughout California. Truck drivers are often overworked, underpaid, and under-rested. Accidents happen. When an accident happens, it’s good to have experienced attorneys in your corner.
What causes most truck accidents?
Most truck accidents are caused by one or more of the following:
- Driver fatigue;
- Driver error;
- Excessive speed;
- Faulty equipment;
- Substance abuse; and/or
- Aggressive driving.
Can I recover if a truck hits my car?
Truck accidents aren’t all that different than car accidents from a legal standpoint. Folks who have been injured by trucks can typically recover if the truck driver was negligent. That means the truck driver owed the party a duty of care to act like a reasonable prudent person would while driving the truck. That element is typically met just by the truck driver being on the road and driving. Then, the truck driver must breach that duty meaning they must fail to act like a reasonably prudent person would while driving the truck. Then, the truck driver must cause damages, which is pretty typical when a truck hits a passenger vehicle in an accident. It’s especially true in a bike accident, a motorcycle accident, or a pedestrian accident.
What can I recover if a truck hits my car?
Truck accident cases are like most other motor vehicle accident cases, except the damages tend to be bigger. Your car was likely totaled. You probably have some serious medical expenses. You probably have some serious medical expenses ahead.
The cases aren’t pretty. But, if you show liability you can hope to recover:
- Your medical expenses;
- Your lost wages;
- The cost to repair or replace your car;
- Pain and suffering;
- Emotional distress; and
- Punitive damages.
What should I do if I get into an accident with a truck?
First, make sure you’re safe. After you make sure you are safe, make sure someone calls 911. The police, sheriff, and/or highway patrol will come out and investigate. They will make a report of the accident. Make sure to get a copy of the accident report as soon as possible. Do not say you are sorry. Do not say it was your fault. DO NOT TALK TO THEIR INSURANCE COMPANY WITHOUT TALKING TO A LAWYER FIRST. The claims adjuster might seem friendly enough. He’s just trying to see what happened…and he’s trying to settle your claim for as little money as possible. Insurance companies make money by charging high premiums and paying out as little as possible on claims. Insurance companies make a lot of money. You shouldn’t even talk to your own insurance company without talking to a lawyer first. Say the truck driver doesn’t have much insurance and so you need to go after your own insurance company. They’ll ask you how you’re doing. You’ll say you’re fine, or okay, or something like that, and then they will use that against you.
Why should I hire a lawyer for my truck accident?
Like we said, truck accidents often result in significant damages. Trucks are big. Cars do not tend to fare well against them. But, truck cases often have complex issues involving employment, and insurance coverage. There can be multiple insurance policies at play. It can be a lot even for attorneys. Which is why you want an experienced attorney handling your case.
Cars don’t fare well against them.
A semi-tractor can legally pull a 53-foot long semi-trailer transporting up to 45,000 lbs.
A fuel efficient car can be a vulnerable 3,000 lbs.
We offer truck accident victims a free, confidential, case evaluation. The forms go straight to an award-winning attorney’s inbox. They are reviewed, and responded to, typically the same day. If we think we are in a position to help we will reach out to schedule a free consultation. If we decide we are not in a position to help we typically provide folks with resources to help them understand the law, find an attorney, and even represent themselves. We take cases on a contingency fee, meaning we only collect if you collect. If you were the victim of a truck accident, you have a limited time to file a claim. So, what are you waiting for?
OUR FAST, FREE, CONFIDENTIAL, CASE-EVALUATION FORM IS DESIGNED SO YOU CAN TELL YOUR STORY, DIRECTLY TO JOHNSTART AN EVALUATION
Your responses will go straight to John’s inbox. John will review and respond by the end of the business day. If John thinks he can help, he’ll email you a link to schedule a free consultation with him. If John doesn’t think he can help, he’ll email you resources to help you understand the law, find a qualified lawyer to help you, and take steps to protect your rights. No waiting around.