San Jose Truck Accident Lawyer
When you’ve been injured in an industrial trucking accident, you need to know who’s financially liable and how much compensation to seek. Get the help you need by working with a San Jose truck accident lawyer.
It’s unlikely that you’ll ever find a vehicle on the road that is bigger than an 18-wheeler or a semi-truck. And when these types of vehicles are involved in a crash with smaller vehicles, the drivers of the regular automobiles often sustain serious injuries. The sheer size of these commercial trucks poses a significant risk of damage, both to the occupants of the passenger vehicle and to the actual car itself.
If you were recently involved in a collision with a commercial truck, you may be struggling with medical bills and debts from the injuries and damages you incurred. If you are, let a San Jose truck accident lawyer from Bohn & Fletcher, LLP help you. Our attorneys are skilled and experienced in truck accident cases, and they will do everything they can to get you the fair and full compensation you deserve.
What Causes 18-Wheeler Wrecks?
Trying to determine the root cause of your semi-truck accident is a crucial step toward building the strongest case possible. This helps streamline the process and allows your San Jose truck accident lawyer to focus our efforts where they are most needed. Causes behind truck collisions can be narrowed down into two different categories: driver error and external factors.
When the Trucker Might Be at Fault
Some examples of driver errors are as follows:
- Driver Fatigue – Every state has different guidelines regarding how long a commercial truck driver is legally allowed to be behind the wheel before stopping for a break is required. But it is federally mandated that a truck driver drive no more than eleven hours at one time. Failure to comply with these regulations could make either the driver or the trucking company responsible.
- Speeding – Speeding is something that no driver should ever do, no matter what type of vehicle is involved. But 18-wheelers and semi-trucks are especially dangerous when they are going too fast. Their size makes it even more difficult to stop quickly if needed, which could lead to a devastating collision.
- Distracted Driving – Commercial truck drivers are often required to embark on incredibly long journeys in one sitting. As such, they may find that their focus on the road wanes, causing them to become distracted by items like their cell phone.
When a Third Party Might Be to Blame
In addition to a truck driver being responsible for harm, sometimes truck accidents are caused by third parties or factors beyond the truck driver’s control:
- Equipment failure within the truck
- Construction on the roads
- Unsafe driving habits from a third motorist
- Improper driver training by the trucker’s employer
- Dangerous road conditions
How Is Fault Determined in a Truck Accident Case?
In a typical accident involving two civilian vehicles, the process of determining fault is relatively simple. However, when you are trying to determine fault in an accident involving a commercial 18-wheeler, things become a little more complex. This is because of how many different people and entities are involved in running these vehicles.
You may think that if you are involved in a collision, the fault automatically lies with the person who was driving the vehicle. But because 18-wheelers are often owned by corporations rather than the drivers themselves, your San Jose truck accident lawyer will need to figure out if seeking compensation from the business is the right move. Business owners are required to carry insurance for their commercial truck drivers for situations like the very one you’re in.
In some instances, however, you may need to hold the manufacturer of the truck accountable instead. 18-wheelers and semi-trucks require an extraordinary amount of maintenance and upkeep to be safe. If it was determined that your accident was caused by a malfunction in the vehicle, you can seek damages from the manufacturer if a design or production flaw was involved.
For example, if the truck accident was caused by an issue with the brakes, your San Jose truck accident lawyer will build a case that names the maker of those brakes as the negligent party.
Get Compensated for Your Industrial Truck Crash Injuries
Sadly, truck accidents are more likely than regular vehicular accidents to cause their victims to sustain severe injuries. This is, in part, due to the inequality of weight and power between the two vehicles. In fact, as of 2012, a whopping 73 percent of all truck wrecks ended with some sort of injury to the passengers of the civilian vehicles involved.
Every accident is different, and there are many different types of injuries truck accident victims are at risk for. While there are a few injuries that are more common than others, your San Jose truck accident lawyer will know how to get you full compensation for your losses:
- Spine and Neck Injuries – In the worst type of back or neck injuries, the spinal cord sustains serious damage. Injuries like this could lead to complete or partial paralysis.
- Head and Brain Injuries – Head injuries are the most common type of injury sustained after a truck crash. Unfortunately, they are also the most dangerous. The extent of the damage could range from a mild concussion to severe brain trauma. Most often, these injuries occur as a result of a head-on collision with a truck.
- Broken Bones and Fractures – It’s the rare 18-wheeler crash that doesn’t result in severe bone injuries. Broken bones might seem common, but they can easily cost you in lost wages and pain and suffering.
- Severe Burns – Particularly if the commercial truck was carrying flammable cargo or certain chemicals, you could suffer serious burn injuries that result in tremendous pain and disfiguring injuries.
San Jose Truck Accident FAQ
Because we know the aftermath of a semi-truck crash is a confusing time, we’ve provided answers to a few commonly asked questions in the section below. If you don’t see your question, please contact our office so that you can speak with a San Jose truck accident lawyer.
How do I get compensated after a hit-and-run with an 18-wheeler?
In some cases, it might be possible to track down the trucker so that you can file a personal injury claim against the driver or the trucking company. If the driver can’t be located, you might be able to file an uninsured driver claim with your own insurance.
Who’s responsible when I wrecked because a semi-truck’s cargo came loose?
A lost load is usually caused by the cargo either being improperly restrained or the restraints themselves failing. This could be the fault of the cargo’s owner, the team that loaded the truck, or the manufacturer of the restraints or trailer.
Should I accept the settlement offer made by the trucking company’s insurer?
Not without first having an attorney review it. In all likelihood, the offer won’t cover all of your damages and losses, especially any future medical needs you might have that are related to the crash. If they won't make a reasonable offer, we can take them to court for a verdict that awards you full compensation.
Consult with a San Jose Semi-Truck Accident Lawyer
If you have been involved in an accident with a commercial truck, such as an 18-wheeler or a semi-truck, you don’t have to handle the fallout alone. You are entitled to seek compensation to help you cover the damages you have suffered. Bohn & Fletcher, LLP is standing by to help. We can go to bat for you to help you build the case that gets you the compensation you are rightfully owed.
If you’d like to speak to a member of our staff about setting up a free consultation, give us a call at 408-279-4222. You can also get in touch with a San Jose truck accident lawyer by filling out our contact form, which can be found at the bottom of the page.