Any motor vehicle accident may seriously or even fatally injure the people involved. Truck accidents are particularly likely to result in devastating harm, due to the relative size and weight of these commercial vehicles. Despite this, the insurance companies that represent truckers and trucking companies fight hard to avoid liability and to minimize payouts to victims’ families whenever possible. If your family is suffering because of the carelessness of a trucking company or truck driver, you can enlist the Decatur truck accident lawyers at Burney & Burney to stand up for your rights. When you are pursuing the maximum compensation to which you may be entitled, there is no substitute for a knowledgeable personal injury attorney who is familiar with every step of the legal process.Seeking Compensation for a Truck Accident
Unlike crashes involving only passenger vehicles, truck accident cases often involve multiple defendants. This is because trucking companies that employ truckers whose carelessness leads to an accident may be held vicariously liable for the trucker’s actions. Furthermore, trucking companies may also be held directly liable for their own negligence, such as defying federal laws limiting the number of hours a driver may legally work, failing to conduct an appropriate pre-employment background check, or encouraging drivers to violate federal and state regulations.
Regardless of whether an Alabama truck accident lawsuit proceeds against the driver of the truck, the trucking company that employed the driver, or both, the plaintiff has the burden of proving negligence by a preponderance of the evidence. This requires that the plaintiff show that the defendant or defendants owed the victim a duty of care and that the defendant breached the duty. Also, the plaintiff must have suffered quantifiable damages that resulted directly and foreseeably from the breach. The amount that may be due to a plaintiff varies from case to case, but it often includes compensation for lost wages and loss of future earning capacity, past medical expenses and future medical costs, pain and suffering, property damage, and loss of consortium.
There are many ways in which a truck accident may happen, but some of the more common causes include:
- Failing to yield;
- Distracted driving;
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol;
- Failing to adequately maintain trucks;
- Driving while fatigued, often in violation of hours of service rules;
- Improperly loading the truck; or
- Operating a truck without the proper training and licensing.
Commercial vehicles, such as 18-wheelers, semi-trucks, big rigs, and tractor-trailers, can cause a tragic accident in a matter of seconds. It is important to hold those responsible accountable so that the victim and their loved ones are not forced to bear the resulting burdens alone. In some cases, there may also be additional defendants, such as an equipment manufacturer or a company responsible for the negligent loading of a trailer, against which there may be potential liability.Explore Your Options with a Truck Accident Lawyer in Decatur or Beyond
Many complicated and technical issues may arise in truck accident cases, such as allegations of contributory negligence, subrogation claims from insurance companies that may have paid benefits to the injured person, and procedural rules like the statute of limitations. To talk to an experienced truck or car accident attorney about your case, call Burney & Burney at (256) 350-9988 or contact us online. Our Decatur truck accident attorneys offer a free, confidential case evaluation to residents of Decatur, Huntsville, and other Alabama communities.