Updated July 31, 2020
Truck accidents are more complex than incidents involving passenger vehicles. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding the accident, there will be a formal investigation. State, local, and possibly federal laws could also be affected depending on where the truck originated and what type of cargo it was carrying.
Large commercial truck accidents are much different from passenger car accidents. Factors such as size, weight, cargo, and stopping distance all contribute to the severity of accidents involving tractor-trailers.
There are more stringent rules for commercial trucks and their drivers than for other vehicles. Additionally, the potential for severe injuries and extensive damage is possible even in minor accidents. It benefits the driver of the passenger vehicle involved to stay informed of the investigation and to seek professional legal advice.
Accidents involving semi-trucks and other large commercial vehicles occur more often than you might think. In fact, 13% of all traffic fatalities in the United States involved a large truck or bus. According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data, 4,761 people were killed in crashes involving large trucks in 2017—a 9% increase from 2016.
Here is a further breakdown of those fatalities:
In Indiana alone, 10% of fatal crashes in 2017 involved a large truck, with deaths divided by 113 occupants of other vehicles, 17 occupants of large trucks, and eight nonoccupants.
Trucking companies are aware of their risks and they will almost always have their own legal team advising them about any traffic incident, which helps to protect the company and keep their costs lower. Without legal assistance, those in the passenger vehicle may not receive the compensation necessary to cover their damages.
An experienced truck accident lawyer will handle all communications with the trucking company’s representatives and insurance agents as well as gather evidence, hire expert witnesses, and file any paperwork. Then, your legal team will negotiate a fair settlement or take your case to court—either way, hiring an attorney means you have someone on your side every step of the way.
If you or a loved one have been injured as a result of a truck accident, you are urged to contact the Indianapolis Truck Accident Attorneys of Wilson Kehoe Winingham. The lawyers at WKW can help you get the compensation you deserve. Call 317.920.6400 or fill out an online contact form for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.
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