Florida Semi Truck Accident Lawyer
When you consider that the average car is around 15 feet and the minimum trailer length is 48 feet in the trucking industry, it becomes easier to understand why trucking accidents are often the most catastrophic of auto accidents. Special laws govern how companies who own and operate commercial vehicles operate, and those who suffer serious medical consequences or lose a loved one as the result of a trucking accident have the right to seek the help of an attorney to recover compensation from trucking companies.
As cities like Tampa continue to grow, many people have turned to raising their families in smaller communities like Lakeland and Winter Haven. Unfortunately, 68 percent of fatal trucking accidents happen in more rural regions rather than big cities.
Statistics on Trucking Accidents
- Polk County Commercial Vehicle Crashes in 2015: 411
- Hillsborough County Commercial Vehicle Crashes in 2015: 493
- Pinellas County Commercial Vehicle Crashes in 2015: 183
Overworked truckers are often in the position of working too many hours with too little sleep. A lack of sleep combined with poorly maintained or overloaded trucks can cause a very dangerous situation on the road. This sort of negligence results in one out of every eight traffic fatalities involving a trucking collision.
How a Florida Truck Accident Attorney Can Guide you through a Accident Case
Auto accident cases typically involve several parties: The people in each position in an accident and their respective parties. In the event of a trucking accident, the case become more complicated because the company that owns the truck or commercial vehicle is also involved.
A trucking accident attorney is able to file a claim against the trucking company. To do this, the lawyer must be familiar not only in auto accident law, but also the several layers of regulation that govern commercial vehicles as well.
From there, your attorney is able to seek compensation for your injuries and losses. To do this, they look into not only the trucking company, but also the manufacturer of both the truck and equipment involved in the accident. A skilled attorney can look into the driving logs and maintenance records of the truck to evaluate liability for the accident.
Causes for tractor-trailer accidents
- Unrealistic schedules
- Aggressive driving
- Driver fatigue
- Failure to maintain tires, brakes or lights
- Long work shifts
- Ignoring the reduced truck speed limit
- Cell phone use
- Failure to install blind-spot mirrors
Substance Abuse and Drinking in Trucking Accidents
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration forbids truckers to even have alcohol in the truck unless it is commercial cargo. Most reputable trucking companies inspect the driver’s cab to ensure, among many things, they do not have alcohol in their truck.
Called operating while intoxicated, truckers can be legally punished just for sleeping in their cabs while under the influence. Still, some truckers still choose to take that risk.
The Cost of Getting in an Accident with a Truck
Florida law requires drivers to have mandatory PIP coverage as part of their car insurance coverage. Personal injury protection insurance can help recover the cost of medical expenses and lost wages in the event of an accident.
However, it’s important to note that due to how severe truck accidents can be, you may exceed the amount of your PIP coverage. This is where it’s important to have an experienced lawyer to help ensure that you get the total compensation you’re entitled to.
It’s also good to keep in mind that you do not have to put down money or a deposit in order to get legal help for a trucking accident from Brooks Law Group. We only get paid if we help you win your case.
How Brooks Helps Trucking Accident Victims in Winter Haven, Lakeland and Tampa
Our Florida truck accident lawyers at Brooks Law Group are experienced in fighting for the rights of those who have been in commercial vehicle accidents. We have recovered as much as $1,050,000.00 for clients who suffered as a result of a trucking accident.
We offer free, no obligation consultations to help you in this troubled time. Call us at 1-800-LAW-3030 (1-800-529-3030) to schedule yours today.
Featured Truck Accident FAQs
Featured Truck Accident FAQ
This is a difficult question to answer and will vary from case to case. While many insurance providers prefer to settle cases out of court in order to avoid a costly legal battle, it isn’t always the case.
Some truck accident cases can be resolved in 1-2 years, while others may take additional time to reach a fair settlement. Choosing the right attorney can speed up the process and ensure you’re receiving an appropriate settlement for your case. The length of each case will be different from case to case.
- Advice: The moment you are involved in a car accident, you are likely to experience thousands of questions that need answers. You need to have a clarification of whether the accident has been caused by acts of negligence or misconduct so that you can claim for medical treatment, but you can as well have hundreds of questions that need answers.
- Direction: After the car accident, there are probable directions that you can follow to ensure that everything has been covered. For the sake of minor injuries, your car insurance can help you to cover everything and prevent out-of-pocket expenses.
- Communication: In the case of the wrongful death case, communication is very vital. It becomes critical when death has been caused by negligence or misconduct.
- Investigation: In most cases, truck accidents need to be investigated with much precision, care, and professionalism. Authorities are interested in every detail concerning the accident, and they would like to know who was fault for the accident.
- Evaluation: The amount of money that you will be compensated will specifically depend on the injuries, the pain, and mental torture that you have experienced. The insurance company will always be interested in contesting the amount that you will be paid.
- Negotiation: In most cases, it is important to settle the accident case without involving the courts. This involves high-level negotiation between the parties involved.
- Advocacy: Studies show that most of the car accident cases are settled out of the court. However, everything might go out of the window where the only reliable solution is seeking the intervention of the courts.
- Seek medical attention: One of the first things you should do after being involved in a truck accident is to get medical attention. Whether you feel like you’re obviously hurt or not, it’s crucial you get looked at by a medical professional.
- Report the accident: Another important step to take is reporting the accident. A police report will document exactly what happened to cause the crash and be a crucial piece of evidence.
- Call an attorney: Once you’ve received medical care and have documented the accident, it’s time to call a lawyer. Overloaded trucks, equipment failure, and driver error can all result in an accident — and if another party was at fault, it can be beneficial for you to seek compensation.
- The names and contact information of all drivers and passengers involved. *eyewitnesses may be helpful
- The other drivers’ insurance information
- The year, make, model, and VIN for each vehicle involved
- The reference number for the police report and the responding officer’s name
- Pictures of the accident scene and vehicles involved
- Pictures of specific vehicle damage
It is a good idea to take detailed notes with details from the accident as soon as possible. Include road names, time of day, weather conditions, etc.
- The Driver: Like other vehicle accidents, the truck driver can be at fault for an accident. Distracted driving, driving while fatigued, and failing to comply with traffic laws can all result in the truck driver themselves being responsible for causing an accident.
- The Manufacturer: Sometimes, a truck driver can do everything right, but if something is wrong with the truck itself, they may still end up getting in an accident.
- The Trucking Company: Along with drivers of commercial vehicles, the company they work for could also be liable for an accident. All trucking companies are responsible for doing thorough background checks on all of their drivers, ensuring their drivers a properly trained, and making sure their drivers aren’t over-scheduled.