Tractor-trailer Attorneys in Jonesboro Working Tirelessly to Protect You and Your Rights
As intense and unimaginable as colliding with a tractor-trailer or a “big rig” can be, accidents involving them are incredibly common. Investigating these accidents thoroughly can create complex issues, as the sheer size of the trucks can create a much more complicated accident scene, as well as intense injuries and even death. Most trucking companies also have investigative teams that will thoroughly review accidents to protect themselves from cases being brought against them, putting you at a disadvantage.
Working with an experienced tractor-trailer attorney can ease your mind knowing they have worked with cases similar to yours in the past and have a unique knowledge of these types of accidents and the laws surrounding them. Contact our Jonesboro, AR offices today at (870) 336-6505 to learn more about your specific case and what we can do to help.
What Are Some Main Causes for Tractor-Trailer Accidents?
There can be many reasons for accidents to occur involving tractor-trailers. Some of them involve poor weather conditions or poorly maintained roadways, but a lot of them can be traced back to the negligence of the company that hires drivers or operates the vehicles. This can mean things like a trucking company choosing to go around rules and regulations put in place to protect those on the roadways so that they can increase their revenue.
Common causes that have occurred in the past include examples such as texting and driving, speeding to get to the next delivery ahead or on schedule, overloaded trailers (to get the most out of each load but creating safety concerns), fatigued driving or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and improper maintenance of vehicles brakes, tires, turn signals and more.
When fully loaded, these big rigs can hover around 75,000 pounds, so if something were to go wrong, accidents are rarely minor but often involve massive chaos.
How Are Tractor-Trailer Accidents Investigated?
Your experienced injury lawyers will know what is important to these cases. One of the examples of aspects they will review thoroughly is the driver’s daily driving log, which can show signs attributing to driver fatigue. They will also review any past criminal charges that resulted from drug or alcohol use that may mean that was an issue relative to your accident. Safety records for both the driver and the tractor-trailer are also incredibly important, showing whether or not rules and regulations were followed accurately to avoid potential accidents on the road. Your attorney will also request the black box and GPS locator of the truck, potentially revealing the speed at the time of the crash as well as how long the driver was on the road and operational before the crash. Investigating attorneys will also pull any tractor or trailer maintenance logs to inspect that tires, brakes, and other important safety maintenance were done properly and in a timely fashion.
What Makes Tractor-trailer Damages Harder to Pursue?
In regular car accidents, there are typically two or maybe three parties involved, along with their insurance companies. When it comes to tractor-trailer accidents, there are likely multiple parties involved, including all of their respective insurance companies. The company that the driver was working for (if they are not independently owned) and their company’s insurance will be included, as well as any personal insurance the driver may carry. Add to that the other factors involved, such as the items listed above like driver logs, black boxes, safety records, and more, that all play a role in these types of accidents, and it can be a very complex matter regardless of the level of injuries involved.
This doesn’t mean damages in these cases aren’t awarded often, but it can make the process of pursuing them harder. Relying on a knowledgeable attorney with proven experience in working with these specific cases can mean the difference between you obtaining the compensation you deserve or settling for what the insurance companies believe your injuries are worth.
What Are My Compensation Options?
Several factors are considered before determining what compensation you would like to pursue. Things like who is liable and what their prospective policy limits include is important. Commercial trucks, for example, are required to carry a certain amount in liability insurance by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). The impact of the injuries on the victim and their family, or as a result of their death, is also considered, as well as the cost of their medical expenses and lost wages due to their injuries or death. Do they now have a long-term disability that affects their life and ability to work as a result of the accident? What pain and suffering has this caused their life moving forward? Are they able to return to work at the level they were before the accident to provide for their family? All of these are things that are considered by your attorney to determine what amount of damages are appropriate.
In some states, there is a cap on the damages that you can pursue. Arkansas is not one of these states. Punitive damages may also be an option if it is proven that the driver was acting with malice or reckless disregard for the safety of the other drivers on the road.
As you can see, these types of cases can be complex and can cause immeasurable damage to you and your family. We have several years of experience in helping families pursue damages and help them move forward to the next step of their lives after these accidents. We can help you as well. Contact our Jonesboro, AR offices today at (870) 336-6505 to get started.