WHY IS A TRUCK ACCIDENT CLAIM MORE COMPLICATED THAN OTHER MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENT CLAIMS?
Posted on Friday, May 6th, 2016 at 3:20 am
Just last week another accident involving a commercial truck closed part of the interstate and claimed another life. The accident claimed the life of a motorcyclist and closed part of I-80 near Natomas for three hours. Unfortunately, stories like this are all too common in California and throughout the United States. Motor vehicle accidents involving big trucks cause catastrophic injuries for the occupants of other vehicles. Over seventy percent of all fatalities and injuries in truck accidents occur to the passengers and drivers of the other vehicles involved in the collision.
Commercial Truck Accidents Involve Complex Issues
Any motor vehicle accident can involve complex issues; however, truck accidents tend to be especially complicated for several reasons including federal trucking regulations and the availability of certain types of evidence. For this reason, you need an attorney with experience handling commercial truck accident claims to ensure that your claim does not fall between the cracks and to ensure you receive less than you deserve for your injuries, damages, and losses.
Federal Trucking Regulations and Accident Claims
One of the biggest differences between a typical motor vehicle accident and a crash involving a truck is that the trucking industry is governed by federal regulations. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) oversees the trucking industry and enforces federal rules and regulations to make our roads safer. The rules and regulations that govern the trucking industry are designed to reduce the number of deaths and injuries from truck accidents. These rules and regulations apply to truck drivers, trucking companies, hazmat material transport, and all vehicle used in the trucking industry including the tractors and the trailers.
During a truck accident investigation, it is vital that the attorney determine if the truck driver and/or the truck company violated any of the federal regulations and rules. This could be a vital piece of evidence used to determine fault and prove the driver and/or company is responsible for your injuries. For example, if the driver exceeded the number of hours he can drive, this evidence may be used to prove he was drowsy or fatigued at the time of the accident and that is why the accident happened.
Another example would be if the truck driver were using a cell phone at the time of the accident. Truck drivers are prohibited from using handheld devices to text or talk while driving. It does not matter what the state law says about using a handheld cell phone, truckers are prohibited from using them while driving. You need an attorney who knows trucking regulations and rules to ensure that these issues are properly investigated in your truck accident claim.
Gathering Evidence in a Truck Accident Claim
The type of evidence in a truck accident case can make investigating the claim more complicated. In most vehicle accident claims, you have the police report, witness statements, and photographs. However, a truck accident attorney must act quickly to obtain evidence such as the truck’s black box, the driver’s log, and maintenance records. This evidence can be crucial in proving fault on the part of the driver or the company. If an attorney is not familiar with the trucking industry, he may not realize this evidence is available. Furthermore, if an attorney does not act quickly, this evidence can be lost or destroyed.
Contact an Experienced Sacramento Truck Accident Attorney
If you have been injured in a California truck accident, you need a truck accident attorney on your side who understands the complexities of a trucking accident claim. Contact the trucking accident lawyers of the Tiemann Law Firm at (916) 999-9000 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation and case evaluation.