According to the Department of Transportation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), 10 percent of the 33,808 people who were killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2009 died in accidents involving tractor trailers, semi-trucks and commercial trucks. An additional 74,000 people were injured in these accidents. If you are the victim of a truck accident where the truck jackknifes it is important to have an experienced truck accident attorney in Clayton County who can get the proper compensation.
Truck accident victims face a complicated system when seeking compensation. This is because insurance limits for truck accidents are higher than for other automobiles, there may be different parties that face financial responsibility and damage to property and health will likely be severe.
Georgia truck accident victims may be able to pursue compensation against any or all of the following parties:
- The truck driver: If a truck driver is found to be negligent (the failure to act as a reasonably prudent person would under the same circumstances) he may be found to be financially liable for injuries and damages. Speeding, exceeding federally limited consecutive driving hours (especially if the driver lies in the log books), misrepresenting his experience, training or expertise in driving a certain truck type, driving while impaired or fatigued are all examples of a truck driver's negligence.
- The trucking company: Trucking companies may be liable if they do not adequately screen drivers and therefore they allow an unqualified driver to be behind the wheel of a truck. Companies may also be responsible if they do not sufficiently maintain their equipment, do not provide adequate driver training or if they have incentives for drivers to exceed speed limits or ignore mandatory rest periods (for example, by offering a sliding-scale bonus depending on how quickly a driver can reach the destination)..
- The insurance company: Trucking companies are required by law to carry minimum insurance levels. Insurance companies may be liable in personal injury or wrongful death cases. In Georgia truck accidents a trucking company's insurance carrier may be sued directly.
Various third parties may also be pursued in Georgia truck accidents, such as truck rig or tractor trailer owners, loading companies and parts manufacturers (if defective parts cause an accident).
If you or someone you know has been hurt by a distracted truck driver, meet with a truck accident lawyer at Shane Smith Law. We can assist you in every stage of your case so give us a call today at (980) 246-2656