Atlanta Truck Accident Lawyer
Are you suffering from serious injuries after a truck wreck?
Car accidents are damaging enough, but the worst type of vehicle to get into an auto accident with is undoubtedly a truck or tractor-trailer. Due to the size and weight of these vehicles, collisions with them almost always result in serious injuries. Suppose you’ve been involved in an auto accident with a large commercial truck. In that case, an Atlanta truck accident lawyer can help you get the settlement you deserve for your injuries and damages.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
The causes of truck accidents are often similar to those of other auto accidents.
Some of the most common causes include:
- Distracted driving
- Fatigued driving
- Aggressive driving maneuvers
- Speeding or going too fast for the road conditions
- Drunk driving or impaired driving
- Poor truck maintenance or upkeep
When it comes to truck accidents, while the causes may be similar to other traffic collisions, the risks and consequences of a crash with a truck are much more severe. That’s why keeping your eyes open for signs that a truck driver could be driving carelessly is essential.
How to Spot a Distracted or Fatigued Truck Driver
Truckers put in a lot of road hours all at once, often leading to boredom or fatigue while behind the wheel. Some research has found that driver fatigue is a factor in only 13% of truck crashes.
However, the New York Times reported in 2014 that, according to federal officials, research does not consider that fatigued driving might be underreported among truck accident investigations. After all, truck drivers would not want to admit to being sleepy and take the blame for the crash.
Distracted or fatigued driving in truck drivers is often accompanied by:
- The truck driver following too closely
- The truck swerving between lanes or within a lane
- The truck driving on the road at night without lights on
- The truck driver changing lanes without warning or failing to use turn signals
Always watch for these signs of fatigued or distracted driving. Noting this evidence of poor driving behavior could help you avoid a collision with a large truck or at least bolster your personal injury case after an accident by allowing you to testify about what you saw.
Who is Responsible for a Truck Accident?
When you’ve been in a truck or tractor-trailer accident, there are a couple of other parties that could be found at fault aside from you or the truck driver:
- The trucking companies, if they scheduled the driver too many hours
- The truck owners, if the crash resulted from an inadequate truck maintenance schedule
- The truck’s maintenance or repair providers, if the maintenance was performed poorly
- The truck or truck parts manufacturer, if a mechanical failure—like malfunctioning brakes—caused the collision
- Freight loaders or shippers, if the truck was improperly loaded and caused additional damage factors
Understanding the trucking industry and all parties that could have contributed to your crash is complicated. Experienced Atlanta truck accident attorneys can help truck accident victims navigate the road to determining who is at fault and how much compensation they are entitled to receive.
Damages You Can Recover After an Atlanta Truck Wreck
In any accident, you can receive compensation for a few different types of damages. The most common types are economic damages—measurable by documentation and financial records—and non-economic damages, which are more subjective and address losses that aren’t necessarily computable.
Since trucking accidents often result in severe or catastrophic injuries, a case can usually be made for the inclusion of more significant non-economic damages to make Atlanta truck accident victims whole again.
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Mental anguish
- Diminished future earning capacity
- Loss of enjoyment in life due to disability or disfigurement
What Should You Do After a Commercial Truck Accident?
A trucking accident is likely devastating. But what do you do after you’ve been involved in a collision with a truck to ensure you’ll recover both physically and financially? The most important steps you can take are ones that make you safe, healthy, and financially stable.
After your truck wreck, be sure you:
- Seek immediate medical treatment
- Contact the police immediately
- Gather evidence right away if you’re able
- Report your accident to your car insurance company
- Continue your treatments until you reach maximum medical improvement
These steps will ensure you’re taken care of physically and that you’ve followed the law and done as much as possible to bolster your personal injury case.
What Evidence Should You Collect After a Truck Accident?
- Photos of the accident scene and damaged property
- Truck driver’s logs, including driving hours and maintenance schedule
- Photos of your injuries
- Medical records regarding your injuries
- Statements from witnesses
- Police report
Contact an Experienced Atlanta Truck Accident Attorney
After a devastating event like a truck crash, you need to focus on your health and recovery. That’s why it’s important to contact an expert Atlanta truck accident attorney so that you’ll have an experienced attorney working to resolve your case. Contact us today, and we’ll work to get you the settlement you’re entitled to so you can begin moving on with your life.
Before you accept any settlements from the truck driver’s insurance company, be sure to speak with a lawyer who will know whether the offer is fair.
FAQ: Atlanta Truck Accidents
What do truck accident lawyers do?
Atlanta truck accident lawyers are well-versed in Georgia law regarding the rules of the road, guidelines for trucking companies, and statutes that could benefit your case. Experienced accident attorneys can do all the legal legwork for you by filing accident claims and other paperwork, building your case, and negotiating a fair settlement with the insurance company.
How is fault determined in an Atlanta truck accident?
Georgia uses a comparative negligence model for determining fault in an auto accident. This means that you could receive compensation for damages as long as the truck driver shares most of the fault. However, the settlement you receive could be reduced by the percentage of fault you shared for the accident. To win a personal injury lawsuit, you don’t necessarily have to prove why the crash occurred—like proving the truck driver was texting, for example. It’s only necessary to prove that the driver’s maneuver, or the way they were driving, violated the rules of the road and caused the accident.
How long do truck accident cases take to settle?
There’s no standard timeframe for when a truck accident claim settles, and there are a lot of factors that go into how long your personal injury case may take:
- The severity of injuries and damage
- The insurance company’s willingness to negotiate their settlement offer
- How many other parties are involved and could be found at fault
- How backed up the courts are at the time of filing
However, Georgia law mandates that insurers acknowledge your claim and settle it within specific timeframes. For example, an insurance company has 15 days to acknowledge your claim and ask for more proof if necessary. Then, they have 15 days to “affirm or deny liability” on your claim.
Denials are the claims that take the longest since these cases are the most likely to go to trial, which could take months or even a year to complete.