Cargo truck accidents can be deadly. Victims who survive often face severe injuries that require extensive medical care.
If you were involved in an accident with a cargo truck, you could hold the liable party responsible for your injuries or loss. A Hialeah cargo truck accident lawyer from our firm can help you file a claim or lawsuit.
How Our Hialeah Cargo Truck Accident Lawyers Can help
If you’re a victim of such an accident, working with a Hialeah cargo truck attorney can allow you to focus on your physical recovery. While you rest, your lawyer can:
- Determine who is the liable party
- Conduct investigations to gather evidence of negligence
- Negotiate on your behalf with insurance companies and other parties involved in the accident
- Ensure that all the paperwork is filed correctly and in a timely manner
- Talk to witnesses on your behalf
- Represent you in a trial
Types of Cargo Truck Accidents
Cargo trucks can cause hazards when trucking company employees fail to secure the cargo. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) sets strict regulations for loading and securing products in cargo trucks.
Some examples of what can go wrong when cargo is not secured properly include:
- Jackknife Accidents: The word “jackknife” is a term used to describe the truck accident when the truck’s trailer folds up against itself like a folding knife or a jackknife. A jackknife accident occurs when a trailer swings out behind the truck and forms an angle with the truck cab. Jackknife accidents can result from improperly secured trailers.
- Rollover Accidents: These types of accidents can happen when the cargo is not loaded correctly and secured inside a trailer or if the cargo shifts during transit, making the truck top-heavy. This type of accident often ends in disaster because it involves falling cargo, leading to hazardous material spills.
- Cargo Spills: When proper care is not taken during loading and unloading, this can lead to hazardous material spills and injuries to those around them.
- Hazardous Material (HazMat) Spills: These spills occur when hazardous materials, such as toxic chemicals and flammable liquids, are not correctly loaded and secured inside trailers. If these spills occur on public roads, there is a high risk of injury to others nearby.
Responsible Parties in Cargo Truck Accidents
If you have been involved in a cargo truck accident, several parties may be responsible for your damages, including:
- The truck driver. If the driver was negligent and caused the accident, they could be held liable for the damages.
- The trucking company. If the company fails to train drivers or maintain vehicles properly, it may be held liable for any damages caused by its drivers.
Other parties can also be held responsible, including the company operating the truck, the manufacturer of the truck parts, and other parties involved in the accident.
If another person or business was involved in causing an accident, that party might be held liable for any damages. For example, suppose a car ran a red light, collided with a truck at an intersection, and caused it to jackknife into another car. In that case, that driver would share liability for the accident.
Common Causes of Cargo Truck Accidents
According to the FMCSA, the most common causes of cargo truck accidents include:
- Driver Fatigue: This can result from long hours behind the wheel, especially at night. There are several ways to calculate driver fatigue levels, such as using the Fatigue Counter or a computer-based program that calculates sleep efficiency based on your driving schedule.
- Improper Load or Weight Distribution: Inadequately loaded trucks can cause damage or injuries if they’re involved in a crash. There are weight limits established by law in most areas, so ensure you’re familiar with them and display the weight information on your vehicle.
- Poor Truck Maintenance: Drivers should regularly check their vehicles for wear and tear signs. Look under the hood and all body panels for any signs of structural damage. If there’s anything you don’t recognize, stop and fix it immediately.
- The Truck’s Size: The larger the load, the higher the center of gravity and the more difficult it becomes for drivers to stay balanced during acceleration and deceleration.
- Heavy Loads on the Truck: Heavy loads on top of a vehicle can cause drivers to brake too hard, leading to problems over uneven terrains like gravel roads or curbs. On top of that, even light loads can be challenging if there’s no place to tie them down securely, such as during bad weather or while driving through a tunnel.
If you have been in an accident involving any commercial vehicle, you will likely want to know your options for compensation and the steps to take next. We can help.
Contact the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine for Legal Guidance
You deserve to focus on your health after an accident. Reach out to the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine for help in getting the compensation you deserve. Call us at 1-800-747-3733 for a free case review and legal guidance.
We Can Help.