Commercial Vehicle Accidents lawyer
Pursuing justice and compensation after a truck accident is a daunting process. There may be more than one defendant, and large trucking companies with commercial insurance policies will have their own legal representation to look after their interests. An Atlanta commercial vehicle accidents lawyer at Bobe & Snell Law Office LLC is ready to help you pursue compensation for your injuries and damages. You can count on our attorneys to take on large and powerful corporate defendants on your behalf.
Any serious accident can leave you feeling extremely vulnerable with a huge financial burden. You may be suffering from severe physical pain and emotional trauma, and on top of it all, you are probably wondering how much it’ll cost you and how you will pay for it.
It is normal to be uncertain about what steps you should be taking to ensure you’re protecting yourself from being taken advantage of and to make sure that you are getting the medical care you need to put your life back together.
However, when you have been hit by a commercial vehicle, the period immediately following the accident can be a particularly distressing and confusing time. The decisions you make, such as, if and how you communicate with insurance companies and whether you seek immediate medical care, can have a tremendous impact on the outcome of your case.
Initial Consultation and Review
It’s essential to have a basic understanding of what it takes to build a strong case, and an experienced commercial vehicle accident lawyer will help educate you during your initial consultation and case review.
A commercial vehicle can be defined as any motor vehicle used to transport goods or passengers – everything from semi-trucks and trailers, to pickup trucks and vans, to delivery service trucks and rideshares, to buses and taxis.
Generally, if a vehicle is owned by a company and used mainly for business transport, then it is classified as a commercial vehicle. Accidents involving these vehicles are usually more serious than those between two cars, owing to the weight and size of commercial trucks and the conditions under which professionals drivers work.
And while every driver has a responsibility to uphold the road safety rules and regulations and operate his or her vehicle safely, some special considerations may add complexity to a commercial vehicle accident case. Therefore, you need the help of a competent, experienced, and reputable Atlanta commercial vehicle accidents lawyer to successfully pursue compensation.
Here are some things to consider as you begin thinking about how to best handle your commercial vehicle accident case.
1) Loading and transporting freight
Truck drivers have a responsibility to load and secure freight properly. Georgia drivers must comply with regulations governed by the Georgia DDS and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, including weight and size limits, safe loading and unloading practices, and proper securing of freight. When a vehicle operator fails to abide by these rules and regulations, he or she can be held responsible for negligence. Our Atlanta attorneys are well conversant with both federal and state motor carrier regulations will be able to help you determine whether improper loading and unloading was a factor in your case.
2) Multiple insurance policies
Professional drivers and the companies that employ them often maintain separate insurance policies. This can complicate commercial vehicle accident cases since you’ll need to establish which party is responsible. Drivers may be independent contractors, or they may be direct employees of a single commercial vehicle motor carrier or business. The employee status of the driver will affect who’s responsible for paying for damages. Resolving a case like this also requires the claimant to communicate with multiple parties to obtain documentation detailing these relationships and the insurance policies of each party. An experienced commercial vehicle accident attorney Atlanta will take the reins throughout this process, managing communication and demanding the cooperation of insurance providers, drivers, and the businesses that hire them.
3) Driver fatigue
The professional driving industry is very demanding. Drivers are often asked to work long hours without adequate rest. Drowsy driving is a known cause of many accidents; in fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that fatigued driving is responsible for about 100,000 accidents a year. Professional drivers, who’re usually on the road for several hours at a time without rest, and often at night, are at a much higher risk for drowsy driving collisions. To combat this, the departments that regulate commercial driving mandate documented rest periods for drivers. However, in some cases, negligent training and management practices can contribute to driver fatigue — and the accidents that occur as a result. When there’s documented evidence that these companies encourage or even force their drivers to operate commercial trucks without rest, they may be held responsible for your damages. Investigating and documenting these practices takes considerable effort and expertise, so it’s worth contacting an Atlanta commercial vehicle accidents lawyer if you think drowsy driving was a factor in your case.
4) Large vehicles and high damages
Many commercial trucks are very large and extremely heavy (for context, the gross weight limit in Georgia for trucks is 80,000 pounds). The impact of a collision with one of these vehicles can be extreme, often causing severe injuries and devastating losses as a result. Additionally, large, bulky trucks and trailers can be difficult to operate safely, which can also be a factor in accidents. Most large commercial vehicle collisions result in serious, life-threatening injuries or even fatalities, so it can require significant work and resources to properly prove the full extent of the injuries and damages caused by the collision. This can complicate your case since it’ll take more diligence on the part of your attorney to prove these losses and a greater willingness to fight to secure an exceptional outcome.
5) Vehicle malfunction
Drivers and the commercial truck carriers that hire them both play a role in maintaining vehicles. Drivers are responsible for reporting vehicle issues, while motor carriers must address these problems and complete regular maintenance of their fleet of vehicles. When either party fails to fulfill these obligations, it may be held responsible for the damage they cause.
6) Drug and alcohol use
Similarly, the demands of commercial carrying lead most truck drivers to alcohol and drug use, which can impair their ability to operate a truck safely. Studies have found that commercial vehicle drivers often abuse substances such as marijuana, cocaine, and methamphetamines. All these drugs significantly impair a driver’s ability to operate a vehicle safely — and, of course, driving while under the influence is illegal. The police will typically initiate a criminal investigation when substance abuse is a factor in your case. This can delay the process of seeking damages, since some evidence may not be available to you during the criminal process.
Contact Us Today!
Are you looking for an experienced, dedicated, and reliable Atlanta commercial vehicle accidents lawyer to help you file a claim or lawsuit to seek compensation for your injuries and damages?
Commercial Vehicle Accidents lawyer
Contact Bobe & Snell Law Office LLC to get an attorney who will help you navigate the aspects of a criminal and civil trial and/or settlement as quickly as possible.
Call us at (470) 268-5802 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a Free, No-Obligation Case Review.