Common Causes of Truck Accidents
Driving on a California freeway usually means sharing the road with commercial trucks and tractor-trailers. Not only is this nerve-wracking, but trucks also pose a serious danger to motorists. Because trucks weigh far more than cars, a truck accident can be devastating for the occupants of a smaller vehicle. If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, you may be entitled to significant compensation.
J&Y Law, a premier personal injury practice serving clients throughout California, routinely handles truck accident claims. Our legal team is well-versed in the applicable truck safety regulations and has a well-earned reputation for holding negligent truck drivers and trucking companies accountable. When you become our client, we will provide you with powerful representation and make sure you obtain the compensation you deserve.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents in California
Although trucks are difficult to maneuver due to their length and weight, particularly tractors trailers, truck drivers are held to a higher standard of care than other motorists. Moreover, truckers must follow rules limiting the hours they can drive and regular break requirements. In addition, trucking companies have a legal obligation to ensure that their drivers are properly trained and that trucks are properly maintained.
Both the trucking company and the truck driver can be held liable for common causes of truck accidents such as:
- Improper maintenance
- Lack of driver training
- Truck driver fatigue
- Distracted driving
- Improper loading
In spite of state and federal laws requiring trucks to be maintained properly and inspected regularly, accidents frequently result from poorly maintained components (e.g. braking systems, brake lights, engines, tires, trailers, jacks and cables). At J&Y Law, we have the knowledge and skills to hold negligent trucking companies accountable for truck accidents that result from improper maintenance.
Lack of Training
Trucking companies also have a duty to conduct background checks to ensure that drivers have the necessary licenses and clean driving records. Trucking companies are also obligated to make sure that their drivers are properly trained. At times, however, trucking companies pay new truck drivers to take driving courses and put them on the road before the courses are completed . The fact is that truckers are typically paid based on mileage, and new drivers are paid at a lower rate than those who have experience. In the event of a truck accident caused by insufficient driver training, you have a right to file a personal injury lawsuit.
Truck Driver Fatigue
As mentioned above, state and federal rules limit the number of hours truckers can drive and also require regular rest breaks. Because trucking companies typically impose strict delivery deadlines and truckers usually cover vast distances, truck driver fatigue is common. Truckers who are not well-rested experience diminished depth perception and some may fall asleep at the wheel. A truck driver who fails to honor hourly driving limits can be found legally responsible for an accident. A trucking company can also be culpble for implementing unrealistic deadlines.
Truck drivers can be distracted by monitoring a GPS system, using a smartphone to communicate with dispatchers or ther truckers, as well as eating and drinking beverages. If distracted driving is the cause of a truck accident, the truck driver can be held legally responsible for personal injuries and wrongful death.
Among the many state and federal laws governing the commercial trucking industry are limits on cargo weight. If a truck is overloaded or the cargo is not evenly distributed, the truck can roll over or jackknife. In this situation, the party responsible for loading the cargo onto the truck (e.g. the truck driver or warehouse operator) and the trucking company may both be at fault.
Contact Our Los Angeles Truck Accident Attorney
The experienced wheel truck accident attorneys at J&Y know that truck companies have their own adjusters, investigators, and lawyers who will conduct an analysis of the accident. Their goal is to reduce the company’s liability at all costs. It is crucial to contact our attorneys who can thoroughly investigate the matter since the insurance company is likely to conduct an investigation that leads to an unfavorable conclusion for our side.
If you are involved in a truck accident, you have options, especially if it is due to one of the common causes of truck accidents. Our attorneys can negotiate with the insurance company and even take them to court to ensure you obtain just compensation you deserve. If the trucker violated traffic laws or hour limits, or the truck company was negligent for failing to maintain the vehicle, we can pursue a lawsuit against the company. If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in a truck accident that was not your fault, you may be frightened and not know where to turn. Remember, J&Y Law is here to help. Please contact our office today for a free evaluation of your case.