Did you know that combination trucks (semi-trucks and tractor-trailers) drive an average of 185 billion miles every year? The average U.S. commercial truck driver drives about 45,000 miles every year, but some long-haul truckers will travel 130,000 miles or more each year while hauling up to 80,000 pounds of cargo.
Due to the significant dangers that these massive vehicles pose, commercial truck drivers are held to much stricter licensing requirements and are subject to rigorous statutes limiting things like blood alcohol content, hours driven in a certain period of time, the type of cargo they can haul, and more. All of these measures are intended to keep truck drivers and everyone else on the road safe from harm. But the reality is that there is no combination of rules that will guarantee a driver will not cause a truck accident.
Massive semi-trucks pose a risk of serious injuries to people in passenger vehicles due to the significant difference in size and weight between them. Even low-speed truck accidents that would be considered a fender bender between two like-sized vehicles can lead to catastrophic injuries. Additionally, commercial truck accident victims often find that their claims involve dealing with the trucking company’s insurer.
All of these complexities can lead to a confusing and overwhelming Fresno truck accident claims process designed to pay out as little as possible to the victim. Luckily, there is a team of dedicated and proven Fresno truck accident lawyers at Grossman Law Offices ready to take your case.
REQUEST A FREE CONSULTATION WITH A FRESNO TRUCK ACCIDENT ATTORNEY TODAY
Whenever truck accidents occur, victims should seek legal help from a Fresno truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. At Grossman Law Offices, we offer a free consultation to any Fresno truck accident victims by discussing the specifics of their situation and providing them with legal advice about how to best move forward with their case.
Most people believe that there is no reason to contact a law office during the initial claims process, but the sooner you get in touch with a Fresno truck accident attorney, the better. In fact, when a truck accident lawyer will file your claim, the insurance company knows from the start that you will not accept a settlement for less compensation than you deserve and that you are willing to fight for it.
Read more below about the legal aftermath of a Fresno truck accident, and schedule your consultation as soon as possible to get started on your personal injury cases today.
THE IMPORTANCE OF WORKING WITH TRUCK ACCIDENT LAWYERS
Insurance companies approach each claim with the goal of settling for as little as possible while still resolving all possible legal issues. Moreover, insurance business relies on collecting more money in premiums than the money paid out in settlements, which means the business’ bottom line is the top priority for the adjuster handling your truck accident case. As a result, it’s not uncommon for an accident injury victim to settle for an insufficient amount, which is why you should contact a Fresno personal injury lawyer who handles truck and car accident claims.
DON’T FALL PREY TO THE INSURANCE COMPANIES’ TACTICS
Insurance agencies have decades of cumulative knowledge and strategies that go into the claims process, all focused on reaching a cheap settlement as quickly as possible. Most claimants are the victims of serious, life-changing injuries. Seeking legal help from a Fresno truck accident lawyer when handling a truck accident claim, will only help the truck accident victims to improve their chances of obtaining maximum compensation.
An inexperienced and overwhelmed victim doesn’t understand their rights or the long-term impacts of accepting the low initial offer, so our lawyers are here to help. People may mistakenly believe that they don’t deserve compensation beyond the obvious issues of their medical expenses and lost wages, but this could not be further from the truth.
FIGHT BACK WITH EXPERIENCE
The accident lawyers at Grossman Law Offices understand the complexities of a commercial insurance claim and will go through the process with the singular goal of getting our clients the most money possible after a semi truck accident. Insurers often overwhelm trucking accident victims with seemingly endless legal documents full of confusing language that may drive them to accept a settlement out of fear, but your truck accident lawyer will not fall prey to these scare tactics.
CALCULATE ACCURATE DAMAGES
Working with a personal injury attorney gives you access to a highly experienced professional who can help identify and calculate ALL of the damages you have suffered in a Fresno truck accident. Personal injury law allows for economic and non-economic damages in a case, and the accident lawyers at Grossman Law Offices work diligently to calculate (and negotiate for) fair compensation on behalf of our clients.
Without a clear understanding of personal injury law (and how to calculate a dollar value for something as abstract as an emotional injury), victims may ultimately settle for far less than what they deserve.
FOCUS ON YOUR RECOVERY
If you have sustained injuries in a commercial vehicle accident, it is imperative to contact a personal injury lawyer. While your attorney is taking on the insurance claim, you can focus on recovering from your injuries and getting your life back on track without the added stress.
In fact, increased stress can have a negative impact on your recovery process, meaning that your attorney may be helping your injuries heal in addition to helping you get the compensation you deserve.
Whether you have suffered common injuries, broken bones, or spinal cord injuries, it is vital to seek compensation. You will not need to worry about interpreting dense and confusing legal documents. Just contact our law office to get answers to your important questions. The truck accident attorneys at Grossman Law Offices want to be sure that our truck accident victims get the support they deserve in order to focus on their medical care without any unnecessary anxiety or stress.
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A FRESNO TRUCK ACCIDENT AND CAR ACCIDENT
The following are just a few of the most important differences you will need to understand about trucking accidents. Some differences relate to the danger of the accident itself and others to the legal complexities in the aftermath of these truck accidents. Your situation is unique, and the following information is only meant to give you a general sense of what you can expect.
COMMERCIAL INSURANCE IS MORE COMPLICATED
Commercial insurance policies for a semi-truck and Fresno, CA truck driver typically have higher policy limits due to the increased risk of serious or fatal injuries in a truck accident, in addition to the value of the goods being transported.
While a higher policy limit means that there is more money available for victims, it does not mean that the insurer will simply issue a check for every damage the victim has suffered without a fight. Just as with private coverage, insurers will work towards a low settlement, and will leverage the additional complexity of a commercial policy in order to obfuscate a claimant’s actual options.
In California alone, $2.6 trillion dollars of freight flowed through the state, weighing 1.5 billion tons.
TRUCK DRIVERS HAVE DIFFERENT REQUIREMENTS
Truck drivers are required to maintain meticulous logs accounting for a wide range of things like hours and miles driven, weight of the cargo in tow, maintenance logs, and much more. Each of these logs is in accordance with federal and state laws, as well as internal policies and specific requirements depending on the type of cargo being transported and the type of vehicle driven.
These logs can provide clear insight into a number of the factors that may have led to the Fresno truck accident but can be very complicated to interpret without the support of an experienced truck accident lawyer.
DRIVERS, TRUCKING COMPANIES, SHIPPING PARTNERS, OR OTHERS MAY BE LIABLE
Some truck drivers may own their semi-truck and operate their own trucking company as a sole proprietor, but many others work for a trucking company that manages all of the logistics.
In addition, most Fresno truck drivers are not responsible for loading the cargo they haul, but it’s often done by experienced shipping teams that may assume liability for issues related to truck accidents caused by improperly-loaded cargo. Depending on the many possible legal arrangements with trucks and drivers, the cause of the accident, and more, truck accident lawyers will need to investigate where to even file the initial claim for your commercial trucks or truck accident injuries.
TRUCK ACCIDENTS CAN CAUSE SIGNIFICANT INJURIES
Any type of accident, whether a car, truck, motorcycle, or pedestrian, can be fatal depending on the speed of the vehicles or the type of collision. A semi-truck is a massive vehicle that poses a significant risk of life-threatening injuries to all other drivers and passengers on the road. As such, lawyers will need to ensure that the extensive medical and emotional injuries their clients suffer are documented throughout the claim and are fairly compensated at the resolution of the case.
COMMON CAUSES TRUCK ACCIDENTS IN FRESNO, CA
The following are just a few of the many possible causes of semi-truck accidents. Contact us as soon as possible to connect with a team of experienced lawyers. If you have suffered serious injuries due to a truck driver’s negligence, contact our team of truck accident lawyers. Whether the accident scene has involved commercial trucks, or semi trucks, contact our law firm today.
When we hear about distracted driving, we commonly think of texting behind the wheel. While this is an alarmingly common distraction, there are many other behaviors that distract drivers from staying safe on the road. Some other common distractions include eating, changing radio stations, adjusting a GPS, or even simply letting your mind wander.
The trucking industry often pays based on deliveries, meaning that a driver is encouraged to operate their vehicle for as long as possible to make more deliveries.
Fatigue, in some cases, can be as dangerous as driving under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration imposes strict Hours of Operation that limit for how long a driver can operate their vehicle in specified time ranges.
Speed limits are set on roadways in order to account for numerous safety factors such as upcoming obstacles, or road design. Exceeding these limits — especially while hauling heavy cargo — can result in loss of control or inability to come to a stop in an emergency. In addition to the increased risk of an accident, higher speeds can lead to worse accidents, an increased risk of a serious, fatal injury, or wrongful death.
Source: U.S. Department of Transportation, Bureau of Transportation Statistics, Office of Spatial Analysis and Visualization, National Performance Management Research Data
IMPROPERLY LOADED CARGO
When cargo is loaded into a trailer, it must be properly loaded and secured to keep a low center of gravity and eliminate or reduce the chance of shifting cargo, causing a truck driver to lose control. Depending on who loaded the cargo, many parties may be liable for an accident caused by issues relating to cargo and packing issues.
MAINTENANCE ISSUES AND EQUIPMENT FAILURE
A semi-truck is a complex vehicle with many important parts, and due to their nature, typically has more wear and tear to these components than when compared to a passenger vehicle.
Drivers and trucking companies must adhere to strict maintenance schedules in order to avoid accidents caused by equipment failures or malfunctions that can lead to significant, avoidable accidents and injury.
CONTACT THE GROSSMAN LAW OFFICES TODAY
If you have been involved in a truck accident and suffered serious injuries, do not hesitate to get in touch with us. We also handle car accident, motorcycle accident, rollover accident, commercial trucks accident, and wrongful death. Get in touch and schedule a free consultation as soon as possible to seek compensation.
What does the law consider a commercial truck?
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, a commercial motor vehicle is used on the highway to transport passengers or property in interstate commerce and:
- It is used for hazardous material transportation
- Has a gross vehicle or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more
- It is used to transport more than 15 passengers without compensation or more than 8 passengers with compensation
What are the most common causes of Fresno truck accidents?
The most common causes of injuries or death in a truck accident include speeding, unsafe lane changes, tailgating, driving on the wrong side of the road, improper turning, automobile right-of-way incidents, driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, ignoring traffic signals or signs, loose cargo, poor driver decisions, or unsafe reversing.
What injuries are the most common following a Fresno truck accident?
Unfortunately, death and serious injuries are more common in truck accidents due to the weight of vehicles. Regardless of the truck accident cause, you may suffer severe injuries, including spinal cord injuries, traumatic head and brain injuries, internal damage, neck injuries, broken bones, cuts, bruises, or soft tissue injuries.
No matter of the severity of your injuries, seek legal help as soon as possible to receive compensation for your damages.
Do I have to file a police report following a truck accident in Fresno, CA?
Under the California Vehicle Code, any driver involved in an accident that resulted in death or injury must report the accident within 24 hours. Despite the mandatory requirement, a police report will also help you build a strong case as it can serve as evidence. The police report usually includes photos of the accident scene, witness information, or any citation the police issued to other parties involved.
How long do I have to file a truck accident lawsuit in Fresno, California?
Under California law, if you have been injured in a truck accident, you must file your truck accident lawsuit within two years from the date of the injury.
Suppose you didn’t discover your injuries at the time of the accident. In that case, you need to file your truck accident lawsuit within one year from the date you discovered the injury.
Who can be held responsible for a truck accident?
Depending on the facts of your truck accident in Fresno, California, the following parties can be held responsible for your accident:
- The truck driver
- The owner of the truck
- The company that employs the truck driver
- A mechanic who worked on the truck
- The company that loaded the truck
- Officials at a weigh station
- The company that manufactured the truck or parts of the truck