Atlanta drivers share the road with semi-trucks almost every day. Semi-trucks carry tremendous weight and have the potential to cause devastating collisions. If you or a loved one were severely injured or killed in an accident involving a large commercial truck, the best way to protect yourself is to speak with a semi-truck accident lawyer.
Truck accident cases are much more complex than those involving normal cars. You will need a lawyer that specializes in semi-truck accidents to secure the relief that you and your family deserve.
At Allen & Scofield Injury Lawyers, LLC, our Atlanta truck accident lawyers have recovered tens of millions of dollars for semi-truck accident victims and their families. We look forward to helping you recover complete compensation for your losses following a collision with a large truck. We are not intimidated by the tactics that large trucking companies and major insurers use to try and avoid accepting responsibility for the harms caused by their drivers.
We Handle All Types of Semi-Truck Accidents
Truck collisions are not only caused by semi-trucks and 18 wheelers. We have successfully represented individuals injured in crashes with garbage trucks, dump trucks, flatbeds, moving trucks, delivery trucks, box trucks, mobile cranes, cement mixers, and various other large commercial vehicles.
We also represent victims that were injured in the following types of truck accidents, including:
- Jackknife Accidents
- Runaway Truck Accidents
- Semi-Truck Hit and Runs
- Left Turn Accidents
- Right Turn Accidents
- Wide Turn Accidents
- Blind Spot Accidents
- Tire Blowouts
- Truck Rollovers
- Underride and Override Accidents
- Rear-End Accidents
- Head-On Accidents
- Lost Load Accidents
- T-Bone Accidents
Were You Hit by a Semi-Truck?
We often receive calls from individuals telling us that an 18-wheeler hit their car or a commercial truck rear-ended them.
We recommend taking the following steps after a truck accident :
- Always place your health first. If you are injured, do not wait to go to the hospital. If an ambulance is available you should take it so that the EMS responders can provide care to you while you are transported to the hospital. If an ambulance isn’t available, make sure that you have a friend or family member drive you to the hospital. You might not think you are badly injured. However, you might have injured your spinal discs. Or, you might have internal bleeding. Those types of injuries won’t be identified – until it’s too late — unless you undergo imaging exams at the hospital. You should see a doctor as soon as possible for a full exam.
- Call the police. Even if the accident did not cause severe damage to your vehicle, you should call 911. A 911 call ensures that the police and emergency services arrive as quickly as possible. The police will conduct a thorough investigation to document who was involved and what happened in a crash report. The insurance adjuster will want to review the police report before making any settlement offers.
- Gather the truck driver’s information. Ask for the truck driver’s name and personal contact information. Get the name of the driver’s employer and the business’s contact information. Also, ask for the trucker’s auto insurance carrier and policy number.
- Gather witnesses’ information. If one or more witnesses stuck around to help after the crash, ask for their names, addresses, phone numbers, and emails. Your semi-truck accident lawyer will want to contact witnesses soon and obtain their statements regarding what happened.
- Document the scene. If you can do so safely, take pictures and video of the aftermath of the crash. Take pictures of the damage to your vehicle, to the semi-truck, and the surrounding property. If there are marks on the road, try and take pictures of those, as well. Skid marks can also demonstrate what the truck driver did just before the crash.
- Notify your insurer. It is important to notify your auto insurance company about the crash as soon as possible.
- Call a semi-truck accident attorney immediately. When a semi-truck hits you, you will need an attorney to act fast to preserve the crash evidence. The trucking company possesses some of the critical evidence such as the crash data recorder, dash cam video footage and driver’s logs. If you don’t hire an attorney and notify the trucking company ASAP that they need to preserve that evidence, the trucking company might destroy it. If the trucking company still destroys the evidence after your attorney notifies them that they need to preserve it, the court might decide to issue severe sanctions against the trucking company. If you didn’t send that notice in time, you will miss that opportunity.
Common Causes of 18-Wheeler Accidents
Our veteran 18-wheeler accident lawyers have observed that the most common causes of truck collisions are:
- Speeding above the posted speed limit
- Speeding based on the road, weather, and traffic conditions
- Driver carelessness
- Driver fatigue
- Distracted driving
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Inadequately trained truck drivers
- Negligent hiring or retention of a truck driver
- Negligent maintenance of the vehicle
- Equipment malfunction
- Truck part defects
- Inadequately secured cargo
- Safety regulation violations
Our Lawyers Will Investigate and Find Out What Happened
Truck accidents are usually so traumatic that your mind goes blank right after the impact and you can’t remember what happened. Indeed, many truck accident victims only have a vague recollection of what happened. We are here to fill in the blanks and help determine how the collision occurred and who was at fault.
Our semi-truck accident lawyers will thoroughly investigate the crash. We have a comprehensive understanding of how trucking companies and the trucking industry operate. We know how they investigate truck accidents and where they store the critical electronic data that demonstrates how the crash occurred, such as crash data recorder, dash cam video footage and driver’s logs. We also know the ways that they “misplace,” destroy, or alter evidence that we need to examine. By anticipating their actions and demanding that they preserve this evidence at the earliest possible opportunity, we send them a message that they will not deceive us.
We will acquire evidence from a number of other sources, including witnesses, nearby surveillance cameras, and industry experts. We also have the opportunity to file a personal injury lawsuit where we can utilize interrogatories, depositions, and requests for documents to directly obtain evidence from the truck driver and their employer.
Federal Trucking Regulations
Truck accident cases are more complicated than car accident cases. For instance, in a typical two-vehicle car accident, there are only two parties involved: the injury victim and the at-fault driver. In a truck accident case, there are multiple parties involved: the injury victim, the truck driver, the truck carrier, and sometimes a third party vendor or the truck manufacturer. The more parties that are involved, the more insurance that is available to compensate a victim for his or her losses. However, that also means that it is more challenging to prove who was at fault.
Another difference between car and semi-truck accident claims is that truck drivers and truck companies have to follow a set of safety rules enforced by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). When you are injured in a trucking accident, you need a semi-truck accident lawyer who knows how to investigate the crash and determine whether the truck driver or truck carrier violated any of the FMSCA regulations. A common FMCSA violation that we see is when truckers drive too many hours within a certain time period. The FMCSA has strict hours of service regulations to reduce the risk of drowsy driving. If there is evidence that the truck driver failed to adhere to the hours of service regulations and/or faked paperwork to cover-up the violations, we will use that as evidence to prove the trucker and trucking company’s negligence.
Semi-Truck Accident Injuries
Semi-trucks are large and heavy. Depending on their type and size, they can weigh upwards of 80,000 pounds. When a vehicle that heavy cruises down the road, a collision at almost any speed can cause substantial property damage and injuries. When an 18-wheeler is on the highway traveling between 65 and 75 miles per hour, a collision can be catastrophic.
At Allen & Scofield Injury Lawyers, LLC, we have represented individuals suffering from:
- Broken bones
- Whiplash and neck injuries
- Back injuries, including herniated disks
- Spinal cord injuries
- Concussions and more serious traumatic brain injuries
- Soft tissue injuries
- Psychological harm
You should have skilled and resourceful legal representation regardless of the type of injuries that you’ve suffered. Our attorneys will fight for you to receive complete compensation for your physical, psychological, and financial damages.
Compensation after a Semi-Truck Accident
If an 18-wheeler struck your vehicle, and you suffered serious injuries, an insurance claim, and oftentimes a personal injury lawsuit will be the best avenue to compensate you for your:
- Medical bills
- Lost income
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
We will help you calculate all of your damages. Your past medical bills and lost wages are the smallest part of your damages. The largest part of your damages is your pain and suffering – physical pain, mental anguish, physical disfigurement, reduced quality of life, loss of companionship, lost career opportunities. Often times, juries will calculate pain and suffering compensation by taking your economic damages (medical bills and lost wages), and multiplying them by a number that they believe is justified by the scope of the harms you’ve suffered. Our job as your attorney is to help the jury make that determination by presenting all of the harms and losses you’ve suffered.
Let Our Semi-Truck Accident Attorneys Help You
Attorneys that advertise on TV, billboards, radio, and buses don’t have the time or the resources to successfully litigate truck accident cases. Their goal is to settle your case as quickly as possible – even if that means settling your case for far less than its true value. If they can’t get your case quickly settled, they will abandon your case.
The attorneys at Allen & Scofield Injury Lawyers, LLC are veteran trial lawyers. We’re not afraid to litigate a challenging case. We’ve recovered tens of millions of dollars in truck accident cases including a $16 million dollar verdict in 2016. We have the time, dedication, and resources to invest in a challenging, but worthwhile case.