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Commercial Vehicle Accidents

If you have been seriously injured in a truck accident caused by a commercial driver in Palm Coast, then you need an aggressive Palm Coast truck injury attorney to help you pursue full compensation from the trucking company’s insurance carrier. You should not have to worry about paying medical expenses if a commercial truck driver caused your injuries.

The experienced attorneys of Chiumento Dwyer Hertel Grant have been representing tractor trailer accident victims throughout Florida since 1973. We are respected by our peers in the legal community. With offices in Palm Coast and Ormond Beach, we are ready to discuss your commercial truck injury claim and the options available to you to seek compensation. Call (386) 753-3221 to speak with someone about your case. Contact us today for help.

Who is Responsible in a Commercial Truck Accident?

Who is Responsible in a Commercial Truck Accident?Crashes involving a commercial truck are more complicated than collisions involving two passenger vehicles. In a commercial truck accident, multiple parties may share liability. The potentially liable parties include the commercial truck driver, the trucking company, a cargo shipper, a packing company that loaded the cargo, the trailer owner and the manufacturer of faulty truck equipment.

Commercial truck drivers are involved in a disproportionate number of serious and fatal crashes compared to the number of large trucks on the roads.

Commercial Driver Error—Driver errors account for a significant portion of the accidents in which tractor trailers and buses are determined to be at fault. A driver may cause a crash by speeding, tailgating, making an improper lane change, failing to yield the right of way, driving distracted and violating federal truck safety regulations. When a driver’s error causing an accident, the trucker and often the trucking company may be held accountable for any injuries caused.

Trucking Companies—A trucking company or bus company may be held liable for the conduct of their commercial drivers or for failure to maintain a vehicle properly. Commercial carriers have a legal responsibility to hire qualified drivers, maintain vehicles in safe condition and comply with federal and Florida safety regulations. Our truck accident attorneys at Chiumento Dwyer Hertel Grant have experience standing up to negligent trucking companies and holding them accountable for the harm caused by their disregard for safety.

Cargo Shippers—The company responsible for loading a tractor trailer may be liable for a truck accident caused by an unbalanced load or by improperly secured cargo falling off a truck into the roadway.

Vehicle Manufacturers/Parts Manufacturer—When truck accidents are caused by a defective vehicle design or a faulty truck component such as faulty tires or brakes, the manufacturer may be held responsible. The truck accident victim may have a right to demand compensation for their injuries and losses.

The complexity of determining liability in a commercial vehicle accident involving a large truck or bus is an important reason to consult with an experienced truck accident lawyer. When dealing with commercial vehicle accidents, our truck injury attorneys at Chiumento Dwyer Hertel Grant start a prompt investigation to preserve evidence before it is lost.

Common Causes of Commercial Vehicle Accidents

Common Causes of Commercial Vehicle AccidentsFlorida is among 10 states that have the highest average fatal accidents involving commercial trucks and buses, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

Tractor-trailer trucks are massive vehicles and require special handling to operate safely and prevent accidents. The state of Florida limits the weight and size of commercial trucks to protect motorists from the hazards posed by overweight vehicles and oversized loads on the roads.

Even ordinary driving maneuvers such as changing lanes, making turns and rounding banked curves are more complicated with 18 wheelers.

Speeding—Speed was a contributing factor in 17 percent of fatal crashes involving a large truck, according to 2016 data. The faster a heavy truck is moving, the more distance a truck driver will need to stop to avoid an accident. When commercial drivers exceed the posted speed limit, they may cause a serious accident.

Driving Too Fast for Conditions—Truck drivers often drive at speeds that are unsafe for the road or weather conditions such as when driving through a construction zone or when the roads are wet. Trucks need more distance to stop on rain-slick roads. Nearly a fourth of crashes involving large trucks involved a commercial driver who was driving too fast for conditions, according to a widely cited federal study of truck crashes.

Drowsy Driving—Commercial truck drivers spend many hours behind the wheel to meet delivery deadlines. Driver fatigue is a contributing factor in many truck accidents. Commercial drivers may be in violation of federal hours-of-service and logbook rules that limit the number of daily and weekly hours a driver can operate a commercial vehicle. Our attorneys’ investigation looks for evidence that a driver disregarded the hours-of-service limits or falsified logbook entries.

Unsecured Loads—Unsecured and unbalanced loads create a serious accident hazard. Trucking companies and shippers that load freight must abide by federal rules that specify how cargo is positioned and secured to prevent it from shifting unexpectedly, leaking, spilling or falling off a truck. If freight or heavy machinery shifts on a trailer, it can lead to an unbalanced load, making a semi-truck prone to jackknifing or rolling over, particularly on a banked turn.

Brake Failure— Brake problems are the most commonly cited issue with truck safety equipment. Trucking companies often fail in their legal responsibility to keep brakes in proper adjustment.

Driver Distraction—Distracted drivers are a leading cause of traffic accidents in Florida. Anything that diverts a driver’s attention from the road is a distraction. There were 3,700 accident in Florida in 2017 involving drivers distracted by cell phones, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. Federal laws prevent commercial drivers from using hand-held cell phones while operating a commercial vehicle.

Improper Lane Changes—Tractor trailers and buses have large blind spots on either side. If a commercial driver fails to see a vehicle in its blind spot and attempts to move into the lane occupied by the smaller vehicle, it can cause a serious accident.

Turning—Tractor trailers make wide turns and require a lot of room to swing wide at intersections. Large trucks must veer to the left in order to clear the curb when executing a right turn. If a truck driver fails to pay attention to nearby vehicles, the truck driver may hit another vehicle with the trailer during the turn.

Large trucks are involved in serious accidents every day in Florida, often because their drivers ignore safety rules and regulations. You cannot prevent a commercial driver from driving aggressively or a trucking company from failing to maintain its fleet. But you can hold them accountable for the accidents they cause with the help of an experienced Florida commercial vehicle accident law firm. The attorneys at Chiumento Dwyer Hertel Grant are ready to help the victims of commercial bus injuries and commercial truck accidents in Florida.

Common Injuries Experienced in Commercial Vehicle Accidents

Common Injuries Experienced in Commercial Vehicle AccidentsBecause of the disparity in weight between large trucks and passenger vehicles, the impact of crashes involving trucks and cars can cause extremely serious injuries, especially to the occupants of the smaller vehicles.

Truck accident victims may sustain head injuries, traumatic brain injuries, back injuries, spinal injuries, broken bones and other serious injuries. A truck accident victim may face a lengthy recovery and be unable to work for months. Serious injuries may cause permanent disabilities and require ongoing medical care. They often leave accident victims facing significant medical expenses.

If the negligence of a truck driver or trucking company caused the accident, the accident victim may be entitled to demand full compensation to cover doctor and hospital bills, pain and suffering, loss of income and loss of future earning capacity.

If you have been injured in an accident involving a large truck or bus, you need to have a trusted attorney review the details of the accident and discuss your legal options. Having the representation of an experienced Palm Coast truck accident lawyer can make a significant difference in the settlement you receive from an accident claim.

Contact Our Commercial Truck Accident Lawyers

If you do not have an experienced truck injury lawyer representing you, then the insurer representing the trucking company is most likely to offer a small settlement that is a fraction of the actual extent of your losses.

Our commercial truck accident attorneys at Chiumento Dwyer Hertel Grant handle injury claims on a contingency fee basis. You do not have to be worried about how to afford legal representation. You will not owe us a legal fee unless our legal team is successful in obtaining compensation for you through a negotiated insurance settlement or a jury award. That is our commitment to helping people injured in truck accidents and their families have qualified legal representation. Call today to speak with a lawyer.

We’re Proud to be Involved in the Community

Chiumento Dwyer Hertel Grant has contributed to schools and other organizations that have made a difference in the community and take pride in portraying an active role in our community. Flagler and Volusia Counties hosts an array of events and we are proud to be a part of many of them!

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