Trucking Accident Attorney Decatur
When you’ve been injured in a trucking accident, the results can be devastating. The damages may be significant and the injuries severe. Speaking with an attorney as soon as possible after an accident can increase your chances of receiving the compensation you’re entitled to for your losses, including medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages.
An experienced trucking accident lawyer Decatur at the Ferguson Law Group can fight for your rights to the compensation you deserve. Our lawyers will assist you throughout the entire legal process and help you receive the compensation you need to cover your losses and move on with your life.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
Because of the high risk that’s associated with semi-trucks, these vehicles must be driven by an experienced and qualified driver who has a special driver’s license. Unfortunately, due to the nationwide shortage of truckers, many trucking companies have hired drivers that do not have sufficient experience handling semi-trucks and tractor-trailers. Aside from a lack of experience, many truck accidents are often caused by:
- Drunk driving
- Poor road conditions
- Driver fatigue
- Poor truck maintenance
A truck driver will speed to cover more miles per day. A fully loaded semi-truck hauling a load needs more time to stop compared to a passenger car. When the trucker is speeding in high traffic conditions, they may not have enough time to stop for a traffic jam.
Improperly Loaded Cargo
The shipping company that’s responsible for loading the trailer may be in a hurry and fails to secure the load for safe travel. A truck driver will not be able to control their rig if the cargo shifts.
Some truckers will drink alcohol when they’re on the road. Driving a vehicle that can weigh up to 80,000 pounds while intoxicated is a recipe for disaster. An intoxicated truck driver will have a slower reaction time and will not be able to handle their semi-truck, especially in traffic jams or if inclement weather hits.
Poor Road Conditions
When a trucker drives in inclement weather, they often have a difficult time controlling their vehicle, especially on wet, slick roads. If the driver has little to no prior experience driving in dangerous weather conditions, then their risk of getting in an accident is even higher.
Truck drivers usually have a tight deadline to deliver their cargo. Many drivers will continue driving without taking any breaks, to deliver their cargo on time. A drowsy or fatigued driver will have a much slower reaction time, or they may even fall asleep behind the wheel.
Poor Truck Maintenance
Some trucking companies will cut corners and fail to properly maintain their vehicles. This can include failure to replace tires or service the engine or brakes.
Damages that you can recover in a truck accident claim may include:
- EMT care and ambulance transfer
- Doctor’s bills
- Physical therapy
- Diagnostic costs
- Long-term rehabilitation needs
- Psychological care
- Damages to your vehicle
- Damage to personal belongings in your vehicle
- Inability to work
- Lost income
- Pain and suffering
Accident victims often only factor in their direct financial losses. Our truck wreck lawyers will thoroughly investigate your case and identify all avenues of compensation to ensure you receive the total amount you deserve for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, and more.
Injuries Associated with Truck Accidents in Decatur
When a semi-truck collides with a car, the occupants of the vehicle are likely to suffer serious injuries.
While these types of accidents can cause a wide range of injuries, some of the most common include:
- Bone fractures
- Internal bleeding
- Organ damage
- Neck injuries
- Back injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Brain and head injuries
In most cases, a truck accident will result in injuries that require immediate medical attention. Depending on the types of injuries you have sustained, the insurance company may try to claim that your injuries are due to a pre-existing condition. For example, if you suffered a back injury in the accident, the insurance company may argue that your injury wasn’t caused by the accident and was instead due to a back problem that existed before the accident took place.
Each truck wreck lawyer at the Ferguson Law Group is very familiar with the types of tactics an insurance company will try to use to pay accident victims less.
We will gather the evidence necessary to prove that your injuries were the direct result of the truck accident and that the truck driver should be held liable for your damages.
The Difference Between Car Accidents and Truck Accidents
An accident that involves two passenger vehicles is very different from an accident that involves a passenger vehicle and a semi-truck. Some of a truck’s characteristics make an accident more likely and can significantly increase the chances of serious or fatal injuries in an accident.
- A semi-truck can weigh up to 80,000 pounds when fully loaded. The average vehicle weighs approximately 3,000-5,000 pounds.
- A truck usually has air brakes. These brakes require more upkeep and maintenance and function differently than the brakes in passenger vehicles.
- A truck has larger blind spots compared to a passenger vehicle. Because of this, a car can easily disappear in one of these blind spots, resulting in an accident.
- A truck requires a longer stopping distance compared to passenger vehicles.
- A truck is prone to jackknifing. This means that the trailer of a tractor-trailer can swing out widely, with the truck folding onto itself. The vehicle may also become locked in this acute angle position, skidding across the road before getting stuck. A jackknife accident can result in a multiple vehicle accident that causes serious injuries or death.
- A truck has a higher center of gravity, which makes it more likely to roll over when an accident occurs or if the driver loses control. A passenger vehicle can get crushed under the truck when it rolls.
At the Ferguson Law Group, we understand how these factors can increase the dangers that are associated with an accident. When a truck versus a passenger vehicle accident takes place, we immediately launch an investigation into the case to preserve and analyze evidence, interviewing eyewitnesses, and obtaining documents to ensure that the accident victim receives maximum compensation. These claims are often much more complex than an accident that involves two passenger vehicles, which is why you must discuss your case with a Decatur trucking accident lawyer as soon as possible.
Liability in Trucking Accidents in Decatur, Georgia
Parties that can be held liable in a commercial truck accident include:
- The truck driver
- The company that hires, trains, and supervises the drivers
- The business that ships the cargo and is responsible for securing loads
- The person responsible for truck and trailer maintenance
- The party responsible for road design and road maintenance
Filing a claim for a truck accident is more complex than simply bringing a claim against the trucker. Many parties can be found liable, including the trucking company that contracts or employs the driver. When a truck accident occurs, multiple parties can be held responsible. If a truck driver causes an accident in Decatur, the trucker can be held liable for any injuries. The company that employs the trucker can also be held legally responsible.
Aside from the driver and their employer, other entities may be at fault, including the person or company in charge of maintaining and repairing the truck and/or trailer, the manufacturer of the truck or any of its parts, and the company responsible for loading the truck’s cargo. These parties will usually argue over who is financially responsible for compensating the accident victim.
Additionally, you may have to deal with multiple insurance companies, which can quickly make handling this type of case feel overwhelming and confusing.
At the Ferguson Law Group, our attorneys know how to gather and sort through evidence and chains of command to ensure that all responsible parties are held liable for your injuries and other damages.
Trucking Industry Laws and Regulations
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration holds authority over enforcing and establishing laws and regulations designed to reduce the number of truck accidents on the road. Additionally, states can enforce their own laws regarding the operation of commercial trucks within the state.
Our truck accident attorneys in Georgia have an in-depth understanding of the rules and regulations that the truck driver and trucking companies must follow.
When a trucker and the trucking company violate these rules and an accident occurs, we will aggressively advocate for the accident victim’s right to compensation. Our attorneys will launch a comprehensive investigation into the accident and work to identify and hold every negligent party responsible.
When Should I Speak to a Truck Accident Lawyer?
You must speak with a lawyer as soon as possible after an accident. An attorney can take immediate action to gather evidence, build a case, and guide you through documenting your physical injuries and daily struggles, to form the basis of your case.
Speaking with an attorney right away will prevent you from making costly mistakes, such as speaking to the defense attorney or insurance company. Both parties will do their best to get you to admit fault for the accident. They will also try to trick you into admitting that your injuries are not as severe as you’re making them out to be.
The Truth About Insurance Companies
After a truck accident, you can expect to be contacted by an insurance adjuster. You may even be contacted by multiple insurance companies if the driver has insurance, the trucking company has insurance and there is a separate insurance policy on the trailer. Insurance adjusters are highly trained at negotiating. They may ask questions that are confusing or misleading and they will do their best to make you question the events that led up to the accident. They will also often request to record your statement. A recorded statement can be used against you, especially if your story keeps changing or you have admitted you’re not sure what happened or who is to blame for the accident.
Insurance companies are often quick to offer a lowball settlement amount to avoid paying you the settlement amount you deserve to cover the cost of surgeries, rehabilitative therapy, ongoing medical treatment, and other damages. In most cases, an insurance company may not even know the extent of your injuries before they make a settlement offer. An insurance company’s main goal is to pay accident victims as little as possible.
When the attorneys at the Ferguson Law Group take on your case, we will handle all communication with the insurance company and the defense attorney. This will eliminate the possibility of you accidentally saying something that could potentially harm your claim.
Protect Your Rights
Hiring an attorney with several years of experience handling complex commercial truck accident cases can give you the peace of mind you need as you’re recovering from serious injuries. A truck accident attorney will take over communications, to protect you and your rights, from insurance companies who will try to take advantage of you during this stressful, challenging time.
Never speak with an insurance adjuster without first discussing it with your attorney. Never make a recorded statement, and never admit you are to blame for the accident.
Truck Accident Attorneys Near Me
If you have been involved in a truck accident in Decatur, Georgia, don’t hesitate to contact the legal team at the Ferguson Law Group. Investigating these types of complex cases takes time. Our team of experienced truck accident attorneys will immediately begin an investigation and build a strong case that will hold all liable parties responsible for your accident.
Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn how we can help you obtain maximum compensation for your injuries, pain and suffering, and other damages.
Tifton Office225 East 2nd Street, Tifton, GA 31794