A Houston truck accident lawyer is ready to fight for you
Texas has the dubious distinction of leading the country in both the number of truck accidents and the number of truck accident deaths. These are catastrophic, traumatizing incidents that are frightening, stressful, and life-altering. It is critical that as a victim of a truck accident in Texas, you understand your legal rights regarding what you can claim. Experienced personal injury attorney Jonathan C. Kieschnick has provided numerous victims of heavy truck accidents with compassionate, dedicated legal representation.
Most truck accidents occur in rural areas. However, Houston’s extensive freeway system and its distinction as a port of entry lead to truck accidents being a regular occurrence in the area. Even if you are the safest driver out there, you can still be a victim of a truck accident. This is due to negligence, bad habits, and bad decision-making on the part of the truck driver or trucking company. Experienced truck accident lawyers such as Jonathan can help you navigate your claim and ensure that all liable parties are held responsible.
What is considered a truck accident?
A truck accident, also known as a commercial truck accident, commercial vehicle accident, or heavy truck accident, is an incident between a large truck and a smaller vehicle and/or pedestrian. These large trucks, such as heavy-duty trucks, commercial box trucks, and tractor trailers (colloquially called “18-wheelers”), are typically vehicles that are classified to weigh over 10,000 pounds.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, there were over 32,000 truck accidents in Texas in 2020, resulting in nearly 600 deaths. From a numerical standpoint, both statistics lead the nation.
What leads to truck accidents?
There are quite a few reasons why truck accidents occur, but ultimately it boils down to the following:
- Speeding: Heavy truck drivers are often on deadlines. Their livelihood is determined by how well they meet those deadlines, even to the detriment of themselves and others. Many times, heavy truck drivers will end up driving faster than posted speed limits with disastrous (and at times, tragically fatal) results.
- Overloaded: Heavier weight leads to increased mass which only leads to more severe damage in the event of a collision. Oversized loads as well as too many excessive payloads can destabilize the truck, making it more difficult to maneuver, stop, and drive safely.
- Maintenance: Because of the excessive wear and tear trucks go through on a day-to-day basis, proper maintenance is necessary. When a truck is not properly maintained, it is susceptible to mechanical failures. These failures can lead to even the most experienced and safe truck drivers losing control and causing a catastrophic collision.
- Fatigue: Due to (harmful) compensation structures, truck drivers will often push their bodies to the limit, even if it means putting themselves and others at risk. Driven by a desire for a better paycheck, truck drivers will often violate hours of service rules. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), the agency that regulates commercial truck driving in the United States, allows truckers to only drive up to 11 hours at a time. Hours-of-service violations are commonplace, and those violations, unfortunately, lead to horrific consequences.
- Negligence: Carelessness and recklessness is a frequent causes of truck driving accidents. Many times, truck drivers are inconsiderate of other drivers, often feeling that the massive size of their vehicle should compel other motorists to always yield to them. Unfortunately, not every motorist can, and the results can be life-altering.
Who can be held liable in truck accidents?
Commercial transport vehicles typically have heftier insurance coverage in comparison to personal auto insurance, thus changing the nature of the claim. Jonathan will work diligently to hold all parties liable in the accident, including:
- The truck drivers themselves, who often shoulder the biggest share of the liability in most truck accidents.
- The truck owner can be either the truck driver or the company employing the truck driver. In the case of the latter, truck owners are responsible for ensuring that the driver is legally and professionally qualified to operate a truck.
- The trucking company will engage in poor hiring practices that end up leading to unqualified, dangerous truck drivers taking to the road.
- Cargo companies that load products onto trailers and are responsible for properly securing those loads. Improperly loaded trucks can affect the stability and maneuverability of the truck with disastrous consequences.
- Manufacturers—if the cause of the accident is deemed to be the result of malfunctioning and/or defective parts, manufacturers can be held liable for injuries and damages.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries, or tragically lost their life due to a truck accident in Houston or anywhere across Texas, navigating your claim alone isn’t advised. Reach out to Jonathan C. Kieschnick’s Law Office today for empathetic and dedicated legal assistance. As trucking companies fiercely guard their interests, you require an even more assertive legal ally to safeguard your rights, secure a just settlement, and ensure the accountable parties face justice.
In the wake of a truck accident, immediate medical attention is crucial. Your health and welfare should always be the foremost priority. Following medical care, it’s beneficial to consult a lawyer with truck accident case expertise. Such a lawyer can help you comprehend your legal rights, explain your options, and can represent you during discussions with the trucking company or their insurance company.
Remember, each truck accident case is unique, with the specifics of your individual case dictating the best strategy. An experienced truck accident lawyer can offer invaluable advice and guidance, help you gauge the potential costs and benefits of pursuing a legal claim, and assist you in securing deserved compensation for your injuries and other damages.
Summarily, if you’re a truck accident victim, seeking immediate medical attention and consulting a truck accident specialist lawyer is paramount. They can assist in understanding your legal rights, discussing your options, and representing you during interactions with the trucking company or its insurance company.
Broadly speaking, if you’ve been injured in a truck accident, it could be helpful to consult a lawyer specializing in truck accident cases. They can assist in understanding your legal rights, discuss options, and can represent you in negotiations with the trucking company or their insurance provider. Bear in mind, each truck accident case is unique, with the details of your case determining the most effective strategy. A lawyer experienced in handling truck accident cases can offer essential advice and guidance.
Following are three tips that could be beneficial if you’ve been injured in a truck accident: Prioritize immediate medical attention. Your health and welfare should always be your primary concern. Reach out to a lawyer who specializes in truck accident cases. They can assist in understanding your legal rights, discussing your options, and can represent you during negotiations with the trucking company or its insurance provider. Maintain detailed records of all medical treatments, expenses, and any other damages or losses resulting from the accident. This documentation will be vital evidence in any legal claim you might pursue. Recall, every truck accident case is unique, and the specifics of your case will determine the best strategy. A lawyer experienced in handling truck accident cases can provide crucial advice and guidance.
Heavy truck accidents are often devastating incidents that result in significant damage and severe injuries due to the sheer size and weight of these commercial vehicles. Weighing up to 80,000 pounds and often traveling at high speeds on highways, when heavy trucks collide with smaller vehicles, the outcome can be catastrophic.
The term “heavy truck” typically refers to commercial trucks such as semi-trucks, tractor-trailers, 18-wheelers, big rigs, and other large freight trucks. These trucks are crucial to the economy as they transport goods across cities and states. However, their large size and heavy loads make them difficult to maneuver, and their operation requires specialized training and adherence to safety regulations.
When heavy truck accidents occur, they often result in more severe injuries compared to accidents involving only passenger cars. These injuries can include traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, broken bones, and in some cases, fatalities. Survivors may face long recovery periods, permanent disability, and emotional trauma.
The causes of heavy truck accidents are numerous and varied. Some of the common causes include driver fatigue due to long hours on the road, distracted driving, speeding, improper cargo loading, poor truck maintenance, and mechanical failure. Additionally, the use of drugs and alcohol can also lead to devastating accidents.
Given their size and the potential for severe damage, heavy trucks are regulated by federal and state laws. These laws cover aspects such as driver training, hours of service to prevent driver fatigue, vehicle maintenance standards, and load limits. Despite these regulations, violations do occur, often leading to severe accidents.
The legal issues surrounding heavy truck accidents can be complex due to multiple potentially liable parties – from the truck driver to the trucking company, cargo loaders, or even the truck manufacturer if a mechanical failure contributed to the accident. That’s why victims of heavy truck accidents often need to enlist the help of experienced attorneys who can navigate the complex legal landscape and help them get the compensation they deserve.
In conclusion, heavy truck accidents have far-reaching consequences for those involved due to the size, weight, and power of these vehicles. They are complex events that require extensive investigation to determine the cause and who is liable. For those injured in such accidents, seeking immediate medical attention, preserving evidence, and consulting with a skilled truck accident attorney are critical steps toward recovery and seeking justice.