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18-wheeler Accident Attorney in Ohio

LEGAL HELP FOR OHIO TRUCKING ACCIDENT INJURY VICTIMS

The Buckeye State boasts the seventh-largest population in the United States. A smattering of interstate highways cover the state, from Cincinnati in the southwest, Cleveland in the northeast, and the capital of Columbus in the center of the state. True to its Midwestern status, Ohio continues to lead the nation in manufacturing of plastics, rubber, and fabricated metals.

These industries largely rely on commercial motor vehicles and large trucks to transport goods, products, and materials within and outside the state. The vast interstate system, including major thoroughfares in I-70, I-90, I-71, I-75 and Interstate 77, are hotbeds for trucking accidents. In 2014, about one in four fatal crashes involving a semi-truck occurred on an interstate highway. And unfortunately, like its population ranking, Ohio was also home to the seventh-most deaths in crashes involving large trucks in 2014.

Devastating injuries and wrongful deaths occur when truck drivers and trucking companies violate laws and regulations that are there to keep you and your loved ones safe on the road. When tragedy strikes, you need a law firm that is ready to serve you at a moment’s notice and is equipped with the financial resources and experience needed to take on a large trucking company. Our experienced truck accident lawyers are available 24/7 to hear your case.

THE LEGAL RESOURCES NEEDED TO WIN YOUR OHIO TRUCKING ACCIDENT CASE

Thomas J. Henry has the experience and resources to aggressively represent any client, no matter the size of the defendant. When the unthinkable happens, you need a trucking injury law firm that has the resources to develop your case properly and explore every avenue possible to give you the best opportunity to win. Our Ohio trucking injury attorneys have handled a multitude of semi-truck accidents over the past two decades, achieving record-breaking verdicts and settlements for our clients.

At Thomas J. Henry, we ensure your case is handled with care, from the scene of the accident to the resolution of your case.

  • Technology
    • It is our goal to give our clients the most efficient and effective legal representation possible. To do this, we implement state-of-the-art case management, client interaction, and information security technologies. From the first time we meet (or visit you in Ohio), your case profile will be created and active in our modern computer system. Our experienced injury attorneys will be able to access your files from anywhere in the country at any time. The ability to expedite case files to clients and legal professionals at the click of a mouse helps us keep you informed and comfortable as the legal process is ongoing.
  • Mobility
    • Dynamic client representation means that our clients should be able to contact us at any time with questions, concerns, or updates regarding their case. At Thomas J. Henry, we provide our team of trucking accident lawyers with jet services, satellite technology, and cutting-edge mobile technologies, allowing them to work on your case from anywhere in the world. In addition, they are accessible to clients 24/7, nights and weekends. If you cannot make it to our office, we will visit you wherever you reside in Ohio.
  • Experts
    • Our firm employs a vast array of trucking experts to serve as witnesses in commercial trucking accident cases. It is absolutely vital to find the right expert and the best expert witnesses for your case. Thomas J. Henry has spent years thoroughly examining and questioning experts from across the nation, selecting only the best experts to bring their expertise to a trucking accident case. Ohio trucking accident experts may include:
      • Forensic scientists
      • Accident reconstructionists
      • Doctors, surgeons, psychiatrists, physical therapists, and other medical professionals
      • Transportation safety experts
      • Commercial motor vehicle compliance consultants

WHAT DO I DO AFTER A TRUCK ACCIDENT?

As a victim of a trucking accident, you have rights that require protection. Following an incident, there are certain steps you can take to help preserve evidence from your case and make sure you are taken care of physically.

  • Stop immediately after the crash and assess the situation
    • Check yourself and any passengers for injuries. Make sure it is safe to exit your vehicle before doing so.
  • Make the accident visible
    • Use your vehicle hazard lights, set out reflectors, or use road flares to signal to other motorists that they are approaching a crash scene.
  • Notify the police
    • Contact the police or call 911 if there is an emergency. Filing a police report is an important step in filing insurance claims. Also, be sure that paramedics arrive on the scene to care for any injuries sustained in the crash.
  • Record the facts and take pictures
    • Speak with responding officers and be as accurate as possible without speculating about facts surrounding the accident or any injuries you may have incurred. In addition, take pictures of your vehicle, the scene, any injuries you or your passengers suffered, or anything else that may help your case in the future.
  • Gather and exchange information
    • Collect the names, addresses, and phone numbers of all parties involved in the accident as well as any witnesses to the crash. Obtain the insurance information of all drivers involved in the truck accident.
  • Seek medical attention
    • Sometimes injuries or pain from the accident won’t become apparent until days after the crash. If you are uncertain if you suffered an injury, err on the side of caution and schedule an appointment with a primary care physician.
  • Report the accident to your insurance company
    • Contact your insurance company as soon as you can. As your claim is processed, keep a log of any medical expenses or crash-related expenses as well as any changes in health. Avoid speaking with other insurance companies or trucking company claims adjusters.
  • Contact an experienced Ohio trucking accident attorney
    • Attorneys are responsible for protecting your rights as an accident victim and for making sure insurance companies are acting in your best interest. Our injury attorneys will immediately work to obtain and preserve evidence from the accident, give you legal advice, and ensure you receive ample medical attention. Experienced Ohio trucking injury lawyers will make sure you are comfortable and informed throughout the entire process and pursue every measure available to obtain the compensation you deserve.

COMMON OHIO TRUCKING VIOLATIONS THAT RESULT IN ACCIDENTS

Trucking accidents can cause catastrophic, life-altering injuries due to their massive size and large loads. Even the most common traffic violations can turn into fatal accidents because of the size differential between commercial motor vehicles and passenger vehicles. In the United States, large trucks can weigh up to 40 tons, or 20 times heavier than an average car. In 2014, there were 130 deaths in crashes involving large trucks in the state of Ohio.

Some common trucking violations that cause accidents in Ohio include:

  • Improper loading
    • When large trucks fail to secure their loads properly, motorists are put at an extreme danger. Contents from these trucks, including hazardous materials, could spill onto the roadways, causing serious accidents.
  • Following too closely
  • Improper lane changing
  • Driving while fatigued
  • Speeding
    • In some parts of Ohio during the winter months, especially in the northeast Snow Belt, road conditions require drivers to slow down. When commercial motor vehicles fail to do so, accidents and injuries can occur.
  • Parking on the shoulder
  • Failure to maintain vehicle

WHO CAN BE SUED FOLLOWING AN OHIO TRUCKING ACCIDENT?

Trucking accident cases can be very complex. Knowing who to sue and where to sue can be critical to your eventual case. There are multiple parties that could potentially be found negligent in the cause of the trucking accident: the truck driver, the trucking company, or the commercial vehicle manufacturer.

Decades of experience helps Thomas J. Henry to make the right decision for our injured clients. Regardless of who we decide to sue, our experienced team of trucking injury lawyers understands how the trucking industry works, demonstrating consistently throughout the years how truck drivers, trucking companies, and manufacturers have caused debilitating injuries and deaths. Last year, more than 100,000 people were injured in trucking accidents.

Throughout the nation, Thomas J. Henry has helped injured victims of trucking accidents stand up against the largest trucking companies in the world and achieve the verdict and settlements they deserve. Ohio truck accident victims deserve dynamic representation from attorneys with proven records of winning.

FEDERAL TRUCKING GUIDELINES HELP PREVENT HIGHWAY ACCIDENTS

Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations contains the regulations regarding the operation and maintenance of commercial motor vehicles. Trucking companies and their employees (drivers) must abide by these regulations, which have been put in place to keep motorists safe on the roadways. Failure to comply with these laws oftentimes leads to trucking accidents resulting in serious or fatal injuries.

In order to legally operate a commercial motor vehicle, drivers are required to obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL). Those who hold a CDL are held to a higher standard and are at risk of having their CDL suspended if they commit serious traffic violations (such as mobile phone use while driving).

Here are a few important commercial motor vehicle regulations:

  • Drivers must be 21 years of age or older to drive across state lines or operate a vehicle containing hazardous materials.
    • Ohio commercial motor vehicle operators must be at least 18 years old to drive within the state.
  • To be eligible for a CDL, drivers must have no prior disqualifying criminal offenses.
  • Prior to obtaining a CDL, drivers must test for and obtain a commercial learner’s permit (CLP) and hold it for 14 days.
  • In order to obtain a commercial learner’s permit, drivers must be cleared by a qualified medical examiner that they are physically able to operate a commercial vehicle.
  • For commercial motor vehicle operators, the blood alcohol content (BAC) limit is .04, compared to .08 for regular drivers.
  • Truck drivers are banned from using handheld mobile phones while driving. Trucking companies are prohibited from allowing or requiring drivers to use handheld devices while driving.
  • Drivers are prohibited from holding a CDL issued by more than one state or jurisdiction.

HOURS OF SERVICE REGULATIONS

A leading cause of fatal trucking accidents is driver drowsiness. A fatigued truck driver can cause catastrophic damage and injury by falling asleep at the wheel. Insufficient sleep prior to driving can have the same negative effects as consuming alcohol. These regulations help ensure truck drivers are well rested before getting behind the wheel of their rig.

Property-carrying commercial motor vehicle drivers,

  • may drive a maximum of 11 hours after 10 consecutive hours off duty.
  • may not drive beyond the 14th consecutive hour after coming on duty, following 10 consecutive hours off duty. Off-duty time does not extend the 14-hour period.
  • may not drive after 60/70 hours on duty in 7/8 consecutive days. A driver may restart a 7/8 consecutive day period after taking 34 or more consecutive hours off duty.
  • Drivers using the sleeper berth provision must take at least 8 consecutive hours in the sleeper berth, plus a separate 2 consecutive hours either in the sleeper berth, off duty, or any combination of the two.

In addition, passenger-carrying commercial motor vehicle drivers,

  • may drive a maximum of 10 hours after eight consecutive hours off duty.
  • may not drive after having been on duty for 15 hours, following eight consecutive hours off duty. Off-duty time is not included in the 15-hour period.
  • may not drive after 60/70 hours on duty in 7/8 consecutive days.
  • Drivers using a sleeper berth provision must take at least eight hours in the sleeper berth, and may split the sleeper-berth time into two periods provided neither is less than 2 hours.

WHAT ARE ECM AND GPS DEVICES?

Found on many commercial motor vehicles and Department of Transportation-regulated vehicles, Electronic Control Modules (ECM) and Global Positioning Systems (GPS) can prove to be a great asset when pursuing your trucking injury case. These devices are electronic systems designed to track and record the movement of a truck, including the speed it was traveling prior to an impact. This information is important in determining negligence and fault in a trucking accident.

ECM and GPS devices also can reveal the habits of the truck driver and determine the routes the driver took prior to the crash. The information found on these devices are crucial, and Thomas J. Henry will immediately file a lawsuit and restraining order to not only obtain these devices but also all of the driver’s Federal Motor Carrier documents. Our experienced trucking attorneys understand the importance of acquiring this data and how it can affect the achievement of a positive verdict or settlement.

CONTACT AN EXPERIENCED OHIO TRUCKING ACCIDENT AND INJURY ATTORNEY

When hiring a lawyer to handle your Ohio trucking injury case, you need someone who is experienced, knowledgeable about the trucking industry, and is backed by the financial resources necessary to develop your case to the fullest extent. You need a law firm with decades of winning results for clients, achieving record-breaking verdicts and bringing the largest trucking companies in the nation to justice. Through expansive discovery, depositions, and massive use of experts, we will pursue every avenue possible to make sure you receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries. Thomas J. Henry can help Ohio trucking injury victims obtain real results.

Our experienced injury attorneys are available 24/7, nights and weekends. If you cannot make it to one of our offices, we can visit you wherever you live in Ohio — at your home, workplace, or hospital. Your choice matters. If you or a loved one have been injured in a trucking accident in Ohio, call Thomas J. Henry.

Disclaimer: Any summary, description, or paraphrase of a regulatory requirement on this site is intended to provide general guidance only.  Please consult the text of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations for a full account of the applicable requirements.

HAVE YOU BEEN INJURED?

Contact Us for a FREE Case Review

877-969-8159 • info@tjhlaw.com

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