Each day on our commutes, we see a handful of trucks delivering goods. Oftentimes, you pay them no mind and continue on your way to your predetermined destination. This can all turn dire in a matter of seconds if you are involved in a truck accident. It has been reported by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration that 649 fatalities involving trucks occurred in Texas in 2017 alone.
What is Considered a Truck in Personal Injury Law
Texas considers vehicles used to transport items or property as a truck. This is a broad definition and characteristics of the truck will come into play where the law applies. Typically a truck accident involves the following types of trucks:
- Big rigs
- Box Trucks
- Dump trucks
- Tow trucks
- Refrigerated trucks
- Oil trucks
- Gas trucks
- And delivery trucks
Causes of Truck Accidents
Now that we know what Texas considers to be a truck, let’s discuss the most common ways truck accidents happen. Operating a truck is no easy feat especially when the truck is fully loaded. That is over 80,000 pounds hitting a car all at once. The most common cause of truck accidents include:
- Driver fatigue
- Inexperienced truck drivers
- Driving under the influence
- Excessive speed
- Following too closely
- Loss of control
- Poor maintenance
- Improper cargo loading
- Poor weather conditions
- Distracted drivers
- Ignoring traffic regulations
This is not an exhaustive list by any means but gives us some insight as to how truck accidents happen and what a truck accident lawyer faces with every case.
The Laws Regulating Trucks and Truck Drivers
There are both Federal and State regulations truck drivers and their employers must follow to stay operational. Some state laws to keep in mind are the maximum on-duty consecutive hours is 14 only after having 10-days off duty. Within the 14-hour on-duty period, the maximum driving time cannot exceed 11 hours.
Many trucking companies will cut corners to meet deadlines which can cause accidents. A truck accident lawyer has several routes to take when filing a claim. The potential at-fault parties are the truck driver, the cargo company, the trucking company, and in some cases the manufacturer of the truck. Each case is unique and determining the at-fault party is crucial when seeking compensation.
Steps to Take After a Texas Truck
It can be a confusing time after a truck accident, it is a traumatic incident for anyone but you need to follow some steps. The first is to seek medical attention. Your health is the most important part and any injury sustained needs to be immediately checked out.
Next, if possible obtain and preserve any evidence you. Always ensure you are safe before attempting to collect evidence. Evidence includes parts strewn about the road from all vehicles involved, blood, broken guardrails, and other items.
Speak to anyone who witnessed the accident immediately. Ask them to remain at the scene and speak with the police about what they saw. Obtain their names, phone numbers, email addresses, and any other contact information.
Call Thomas J. Henry to Schedule a Consultation Today
The final step is to contact a Texas truck accident lawyer. They will discuss your case and be able to determine the appropriate course of action in your specific circumstance. Call Thomas J. Henry at 866-517-5659 to speak with an experienced truck accident lawyer today and discuss your legal options.