The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicates1 that there were approximately 438,000 large trucks involved in police-reported crashes during 2014. A substantial number of these accidents involved commercial trucks such as semis, tanker trucks, or other specialized vehicles that are operated by trucking companies that haul goods and materials for a profit.
There are many significant ways in which commercial trucks accidents differ from accidents that only involve privately owned vehicles. For this reason, if you have been hurt in an accident with a large commercial truck, you should contact an attorney who has experience handling cases like these and has successfully recovered compensation for truck accident victims in the past. Some of the ways in which these cases are more complicated that “regular’ car accident cases include are discussed below.
When a private party causes an accident, liability will almost always lie solely with that party. When a person who is working for someone else causes an accident while they are engaged in duties related to their job, however, their employer can often be held liable for any damages that result. In a truck accident case, vicarious liability can be established either through a legal doctrine known as “respondeat superior” or through provisions found in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations2 (FMSCR).
Driving a commercial vehicle that weights 20 to 30 times as much as most other vehicles on the road at 75 or 80 miles is an inherently dangerous activity. For this reason, both state and federal regulations impact nearly every aspect of commercial trucking, from the number of house that a truck driver may operate his or her vehicle in a given period to the amount and placement of reflective material that is required to be on a commercial truck’s trailer. Because any violations of these regulations may be sufficient to establish liability after an accident, it is important for accident victims to retain an attorney familiar with them and who can recognize when a violation has played a role in an accident.
Call a Gainesville Truck Accident Attorney Today to Schedule a Free Consultation
If you have been involved in an accident with a large truck, you should speak with an experienced truck accident attorney as soon as possible. The attorneys of Meldon Law have handled thousands of cases in North Central Florida and we have recovered millions of dollars on behalf of our clients. To schedule a free consultation with a Gainesville truck accident lawyer, call our office today at 352-373-8000.
703 North Main Street Suite A
Gainesville, FL 32601