Accidents involving tractor-trailer trucks can often devastate passengers and their vehicles in seconds. The team of experienced 18-wheeler accident lawyers at Kenneth S. Nugent, P.C. have many years of experience when it comes to protecting victims who have sustained injuries in an accident with a semi-truck, 18-wheeler, large commercial vehicles, or big rigs. We are aware of the significant injuries that can result from these accidents and we are ready to defend you and assist you in getting the monetary damages and justice that you rightly deserve.
What Are 18-Wheelers?
The 18-wheelers are tractor trucks that pull multiple semi-trailers. The tractor on these vehicles features 10 wheels, and each of the trailers has eight. These vehicles haul various types of loads, and the overall weight will be determined by how many trailers are attached. The trailer numbers along with the overall weight limit are governed by state laws.
Why You Need A Duluth Georgia Lawyer In An 18-Wheeler Accident Case
In 2017, the National Highway Safety Administration released a report that stated there were more than 4,600 fatal accidents that involved 18-wheelers in that year. The collisions that involve 18-wheelers indicate that the consequences are a lot more significant and devastating when compared to the standard “fender-benders”. If you have sustained serious injuries after an accident with an 18-wheeler, there are several reasons why you need a lawyer rather than attempting to handle the claim on your own.
1. Even The Odds
Trucking companies have expert attorneys that work efficiently to protect the driver and the company and to limit the compensation they provide to the innocent victims that sustain injuries from these catastrophic accidents. You also need the right legal team that will defend you and ensures you are compensated fairly.
The Rules Are Different
The trucking industry is overseen by federal and state regulations. These are regulations that include everything from driver qualifications and training to vehicle maintenance. When you work with our 18-Wheeler Accident Attorneys In Duluth, we are well versed when it comes to everything there is to know about trucking laws, which is vital to make sure you are awarded fairly for the injuries and damages you have sustained.
18-Wheeler Cases Are Complicated
In the cases that involve trucking accidents, the investigation process of finding out what caused the collision is in most cases a lot more complex than working out which driver skipped a stop sign or red light. Several issues can result in a collision. Some of these include when the driver is fatigued or poorly trained, or even when the vehicle has not been maintained properly. You will need an attorney on your side who has the necessary resources to assist you with investigating the accident.
Accidents can occur due to different factors, yet the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) has noted that there happen to be patterns associated with crashes that involve large trucks. The more common patterns include speeding, when the driver is not familiar with a roadway, along with driver fatigue, which together constitutes more than 58% of the crashes caused by trucks. The trucking companies hold a responsibility to ensure their drivers are prepared and trained well to handle the roads and that the drivers have active CDLs (Commercial Driver’s License). If a company has broken any of these laws, you might be provided with the grounds you need to file your personal injury lawsuit.
Here is a list of other causes of accidents that may make you eligible to damages for personal injuries:
• Pressure From A Carrier
Many of the trucking companies stick to extreme deadlines and place immense pressure on the drivers. In these instances, driver fatigue becomes an inevitable result and can end up in tragedies on the road.
• Vehicle Failure
Similar to any other type of vehicle, the 18-wheelers are susceptible to maintenance problems. The company holds the responsibility of making sure the trucks are safe to operate, and if the required safety checks were not performed, then our lawyers are here to help you use these facts to win your case.
• Equipment Failure
Commercial vehicles like 18-wheelers are not easy to maneuver and can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds, which means they need 40% more time to come to a stop when compared to standard passenger vehicles. Brake issues and equipment failure are a few of the more common causes relating to truck accidents.
• Illegal Maneuvers
While this cause may be less frequent, when a driver has performed a maneuver that is illegal which has resulted in a crash, the driver needs to be made liable.
If you think that any of these factors is what caused you to have an accident with a truck, call us today. Our expert accident lawyers strive to offer compassionate representation and to protect you from suffering any further. We will work hard to make sure you receive the highest possible amount in compensation for the stress and trauma you have gone through.
Now that you know about some of the common causes of accidents with 18-wheelers, here is a list of the common injury types sustained in these accidents:
• Head Injuries
The head injuries occur due to the head impacting against the inside parts of a car, such as a window or steering wheel. Brain or head injuries also usually arise from whiplash that is created when stopping so suddenly. Some of the injuries are mild, while others can become life-altering or even result in death.
If you were involved in an accident with an 18-wheeler you should have gone for an immediate evaluation at a doctor or emergency room. This type of trauma is not always apparent as the accident happens, and could take, a few hours or days for your symptoms to start showing. Concussions are typically identified by confusion, vision issues, and nausea. A head injury needs to be taken very seriously as it could result in permanent and long-term damages.
• Spinal Cord And Neck Injuries
Injuries to the spinal cord or neck, may also not appear straight after your accident. The impact caused by such a large vehicle often results in injuries to the disks, excruciating pain, and dislocation. If the damages have reached the nerves, muscles, or bones in your spinal cord, you may become paralyzed.
• Internal Injuries
Injuries that occur inside the body are one of the drastic risks that are associated with truck accidents. Those that are involved may endure injuries to vital organs such as the bowels, kidneys, spleen, heart, livers, or lungs. Accident victims may also experience bleeding, dislocated joints, and broken bones.
• Psychological Injuries
An accident with an 18-wheeler can result in a lot more than only physical damages, there are also psychological impacts. People that have survived these types of accidents are known for developing something similar to PTSD. Even once they have recovered from the physical injuries, certain people find it impossible or very traumatic to start driving again.
Due to the magnitude and size of these accidents that involve such large vehicles, not every person pulls through. Everything is usually done to save and treat victims, yet wrongful death is one of the realistic possibilities. Some of the deaths occur on impact, while other victims only die later on in a hospital.
The survivors of these accidents should seriously consider going for psychological help in addition to treating physical injuries. Even physical injuries can result in psychological trauma, which often necessitated the need for professional assistance.
• Property Damage
The bodily injuries are not the only damages that occur during these accidents. The weight and size of these trucks usually result in significant property damages. These damages occur to the car you driving and is usually what causes you to become injured in these accidents. These damages can also occur to other property which will depend on where the crash took place. If you were hauling a camper or boat at the time, a crash with one of these trucks may leave your possessions destroyed.
Accidents that are caused by an 18-wheeler truck, can occur due to several reasons, from poor road conditions, fatigue, and exhaustion, a driver that is not experienced enough, to maintenance issues or disobeying the traffic laws. In many of the truck accidents that our law practice takes on, most are linked to serious elements of negligence when it comes to the truck driver.
Establishing this negligence is critical when it comes to the overall success of your case. Perhaps the driver of the 18-wheeler was texting or talking on the phone, or system failure occurred which needed to be inspected yet it was skipped or delayed. In any instance when safety is forgotten or unintentionally disregarded, our skilled truck accident lawyers are sure you will have a case when it comes to claiming negligence and the leading cause for the injuries you have sustained.
What Is The Weight Limit For 18-Wheelers?
The maximum weight limit for any 18-wheeler is 80,000 pounds. When you compare this weight to a car which is usually 5,000 pounds, this type of weight is in most cases extremely destructive if an accident occurs. In some cases, trucking companies and drivers exceed this maximum weight.
When the weight limit is exceeded this is regarded as one of the grievous negligence acts and is merit for you to contact one of our 18-wheeler accident attorneys at Kenneth S. Nugent, P.C. In addition to a massive and crushing force, these excessive weights also make it more difficult for drivers to control the vehicle.
Winning Compensation With Our 18-Wheeler Accident Law Firm
Every truck driver must carry insurance, yet the insurance that is carried will be per incident, rather than per person. The insurance carriers will do everything that they can to save money and often provide settlement offers that are a lot less than what you need to cover the costs of your medical bills and any other losses you have incurred. This is the reason you need a skilled and experienced accident attorney to defend you.
Our personal injury accident lawyers at Kenneth S. Nugent, P.C., are here to provide you with a free assessment of your case and to answer any questions that you may have. If fault is discovered surrounding your accident, you are guaranteed that we will build up a strong case for you to be compensated for what you rightly deserve. In this way, you can focus your time and energy on recovering from such a traumatic event, while our lawyers will work on making sure you win your case.
Kenneth S. Nugent, P.C.
4227 Pleasant Hill Rd #300, Duluth, GA 30096