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Philadelphia Semi-Truck Accident Lawyers

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Truck accidents are incredibly common, and due to the size and weight of these trucks, these crashes can result in serious injuries or even death. However, the process of getting the compensation you deserve can be a long and difficult task. This is where a Philadelphia truck accident lawyer can help.

When it comes to a truck accident, time is your enemy. You will need as much evidence as possible, such as documents, eyewitness accounts, and other information in order to get a fair settlement. If too much time goes by, this evidence can easily be lost making it imperative to seek the help of an injury attorney as soon as possible. Get in touch with us today!

What is the Difference Between Car and Truck Wrecks?

While truck accidents and car accidents can both result in injury, there are federal rules and regulations involved in driving trucks that are not involved in driving passenger vehicles. Unlike the drivers of regular cars, truck drivers often work for large companies, and when there is an accident involving one of these trucks, legal issues arise.

Also, truck drivers and trucking companies are held to higher legal standards than other kinds of drivers. Therefore,

For tractor-trailer transportation and other commercial vehicles, there are federal rules and minimum safety standards that must be followed. These rules are called the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (“FMCSR”), and they are often key issues when handling tractor-trailer accident cases:

  • How long a driver can be on the road consecutively before they must stop and rest,
  • Preventative maintenance and inspection requirements on trucks,
  • Requirements for loading and securing cargo,
  • Hiring, training and supervising requirements,
  • Rules regarding timing on delivery scheduling by trucking companies to not encourage speeding and/or exceeding the max hours of driving time.

Proving Liability After a Big Rig Accident

If you were involved in a truck accident and the truck driver was at fault, you are entitled to damages, personal injury, and pain and suffering. Medical bills can add up quickly, not to mention the cost of the damage done to your vehicle and any loss of income that you may experience due to hospitalization.

As for proving liability, this is where things can get tricky. Liability can be determined with the help of evidence from the accident scene, eyewitness testimony, and the police report.

In addition to this, the accident is often constructed by an expert in order to determine exactly what happened and who or what was responsible for the accident. An experienced lawyer should then review the specifics of the crash and case and will explain the legal options for pursuing compensation, as well as identify the parties at fault so that they can be held accountable.

Another step for proving liability involves investigating the driver and the trucking company. There are various aspects that need to be investigated such as how the driver was trained, how many hours they were working, and the condition of the truck involved in the accident.

Drivers are often pushed to meet deadlines or have not had sufficient training, and these factors can contribute to an accident. A truck crash attorney can determine whether or not the trucking company is at fault by obtaining the driver’s logbooks, GPS data, and any other evidence that may prove negligence.

Potential Liable Parties

Unlike a car accident, there are multiple parties who could be held responsible for a truck accident besides just the driver and the company. Potentially, any of these parties can be sued in the event of a truck accident:

  • The truck driver
  • The employer of the truck driver
  • The owner of the trucking company
  • The manufacturers of the truck and/or the truck parts
  • Cargo shippers
  • Third-party maintenance companies

What Should You Do After Being Hit by a Semi-Truck?

The most important step is that you receive medical attention even if you don’t think you have sustained an injury. Some symptoms take time to develop but should be treated immediately.

You will need as much information and evidence as possible in order to get the party responsible for the accident to compensate for any costs that the accident inflicted upon you. You will need the truck driver’s name and contact information, as well as the name and contact information for the trucking company. You should also have the names and insurance information of any other drivers involved in the accident.

Your next step should be to file an accident report and provide as many details as possible to the police, without admitting fault. You should then report the accident to your insurance company but do not speak with any representatives of the trucking company or the insurance company or sign any reports until you speak with an attorney.

Your next step should be to contact an attorney. Again, the trucking company will start its investigation immediately, and you will need a skilled attorney on your side to protect your legal rights and build a strong case.

A tractor-trailer is an 18-wheeler transport vehicle consisting of a semi-tractor with a trailer attached to it. These big rigs can carry up to 80,000 pounds and are sometimes carrying dangerous cargo that could cause even more destruction and injuries. If you or a loved one has been involved in a tractor-trailer accident, there are some things our truck accident attorneys in Philadelphia would like you to know before you move forward with a lawsuit. Contact our Philadelphia tractor-trailer accident lawyers today.

How Does a Tractor-Trailer Accident Differ From Other Truck Accidents?

For tractor-trailer transportation and other commercial vehicles, there are federal rules and minimum safety standards that must be followed. These rules are called the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (“FMCSR”), and they are often key issues when handling tractor-trailer accident cases:

  • How long a driver can be on the road consecutively before they must stop and rest,
  • Preventative maintenance and inspection requirements on trucks,
  • Requirements for loading and securing cargo,
  • Hiring, training and supervising requirements,
  • Rules regarding timing on delivery scheduling by trucking companies to not encourage speeding and/or exceeding the max hours of driving time.

Who is Liable in a Tractor-Trailer Accident in Pennsylvania?

There are many factors at play when it comes to a tractor-trailer accident and a number of different parties that could be liable such as:

  • The driver
  • The trucking company
  • The leasing company
  • The manufacturers
  • Third-party maintenance companies
  • The loading facility

Even if the driver was responsible for the accident, the trucking company may be held solely responsible and can be sued depending on whether or not the truck driver is an employee or an independent contractor. If the driver was an independent contractor, you might also want to sue the driver.

Because truck drivers and their trucking companies are required to comply with a vast array of laws and regulations, there is a lot of room for error. An experienced trucking lawyer knows what kind of games they like to play and how to avoid them.

Who is at Fault if the Truck Was Overloaded?

The nation does not have a consistent weight limit for 18-wheelers traveling through individual states because national weight limits vary between interstates. Moreover, these weight restrictions may even change while a trucker remains on the same road, as states and local municipalities have the right to issue weight limitations.

The reason weight limits exist is to protect the truck driver, the infrastructure they’re driving on, other drivers, and pedestrians. In addition, the vehicle is simpler to control when an 18-wheeler remains within its specified weight class.

Rigs that exceed their weight class can shift unexpectedly or may require more power to move along. As a result, truck operators in Philadelphia who have to contend with changes in the weight of their vehicles are more likely to lose control of their trailers and cause a collision.

While drivers are responsible for controlling their trucks on the road, they may not be the party to hold liable after an accident. Other parties may have overloaded the trailer or otherwise failed to consider the driver’s concerns. These parties include:

  • The 18-wheeler’s parent company
  • The company that filled the truck
  • The party that produced the transported products
  • The mechanic who failed to address a truck’s damage

Based on available evidence, plaintiffs can work with a truck accident attorney in Philadelphia to identify the party they want to hold liable for their losses.

Discuss Your Case With Our Philadelphia Truck Accident Lawyers

Trucking companies and insurance companies will do whatever they can to avoid responsibility in the event of a truck accident. This is why you need an experienced lawyer on your side who has successfully handled truck accident cases just like yours.

At KaplunMarx, we are familiar with these tricks and know what is needed to help you win. When you work with our law firm, we will explain how to initiate your claim as well as diligently negotiate with the insurance company for a fair settlement.

To learn more about your legal options, contact our Philadelphia truck accident lawyers by calling today.

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