Our society relies heavily on the trucking industry to transport goods nationwide. While commercial motor vehicles play an integral role in our economy, they pose a severe threat on the roadways due to their massive size and weight. Truck accidents are particularly devastating as they often result in catastrophic injuries. If you’ve been seriously injured in a truck accident, it’s crucial to consider your legal options, as you may be entitled to significant compensation for the damages you’ve incurred. Please continue reading to learn how a skilled New York City Truck Accident Attorney can help you fight for the justice you deserve.
What makes a commercial motor vehicle accident more complicated?
Commercial motor vehicle accidents are much more complex than typical car accidents. This complexity arises from the higher standards to which commercial vehicles are held. These vehicles are subject to both state and federal regulations. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has established specific commercial vehicle regulations and laws to promote safety and mitigate the risks of crashes. For instance, hours of service regulations must be met; drivers can drive for up to 11 hours after ten consecutive hours off-duty. A driver must take a 30-minute break after going for 8 hours. This is just one of the numerous regulations truckers must follow. Failure to comply with these regulations will result in severe legal consequences and financial sanctions.
Commercial motor vehicle accidents are also more complicated because it’s much harder to determine fault as numerous parties may share fault. The following parties may be liable for a commercial motor vehicle accident:
- The truck driver
- The truck driver’s employer
- The owner of the truck
- The truck manufacturer
- The cargo loader
What should I do if I’m injured in a truck accident?
It’s crucial to understand that the actions you take in the immediate aftermath of a collision, regardless of whether it involves a commercial motor vehicle or not, can significantly impact your ability to recover monetary compensation for the damages you’ve incurred. Knowing what steps to take is crucial to safeguard your legal rights.
In the immediate aftermath of the accident, you should prioritize your medical needs by calling 911. If you’re physically capable, you should gather as much evidence as possible. This includes capturing pictures and videos of the accident scene, collecting contact information from witnesses, and writing down your account of the events. When the facts of the collision are disputed, you will need substantial evidence to fulfill the burden of proof.
After a police report has been filed and your medical care is addressed, you should report the accident to your insurance company. An insurance adjuster may approach you with a quick settlement offer. Although it may be tempting, don’t fall for their trap. Early settlement offers are typically much lower than you deserve. It’s important to consider what expenses you can be compensated for, meaning your economic and non-economic damages. From your medical bills and lost wages to emotional distress and loss of enjoyment of life, you may be entitled to significant compensation for your losses.
Nevertheless, the most crucial step you can take after a collision is enlisting the help of an experienced New York City truck accident attorney. At Swerling Law, we are prepared to help you fight for the maximum compensation award to help get you back on your feet.