Trucking companies are notorious for avoiding claims and denying liability in cases. They are essentially a large business that doesn’t want to lose money, whether they are at fault or not. First and foremost, when dealing with trucking-related accidents, do not try to handle it on your own. Even if you are being offered a pretty penny for the accident, it is often (if not always), much lower than your case deserves.
When driving on the road near a large semi-truck or 18-wheeler, it is best to avoid them altogether. Stay away from their blind spots, do not stop quickly or closely in front of a large truck, and never assume they can see you. Trucks and trucking companies are responsible for maintaining their vehicles as well as ensuring they are safe themselves to drive. Aside from the obvious—drinking and driving—drivers must also be aware of fatigue and highway hypnosis. If you see a driver dozing off, call the police and distance yourself from them as soon as possible.
Common causes of trucking accidents are due to speeding, faulty roads, unresolved car maintenance, blind spots, negligent drivers and fatigued drivers. These are no excuses for an accident occurring, however when it does happen, it’s best to be well represented. Trucking companies in particular are well-insured, but that does not mean they are willing to play fair. Often, they will deny being guilty or postpone trials for months or years on end.
A few ways to best ensure you have an irrefutable case:
- If possible, immediately document all damage. This can be property damage or physical damage. Take photos of both vehicles if safe to do so.
- Take down contact information of witnesses and provide them with your contact information as well. Sometimes a key witness can be the deciding factor in a trucking related accident.
- Keep note of any pain or physical harm that appears over time. Car accidents are notorious for delayed aching and soreness. This will help to determine medical coverage.
- Hire an attorney sooner rather than later. If you approach the truck driver or trucking company unrepresented, they will immediately try to offer a settlement that ensures you will not sue. This is often because they know you have a case and they do not want to pay the full amount you are owed.
No accident, especially auto and motor-related accidents, can be predicted. Unfortunately when a large truck or 18-wheeler is involved, there is a higher probability of it being a major accident or worst-case scenario, fatal. While there is no way to express the value or put a dollar sign on a loved one’s life, a claim or settlement may be the best route in terms of financial setbacks the accident may incur. If the people involved in the accident require surgery or for any other medical expenses that are necessary, financial help can be crucial.
When dealing with trucking companies and truck accidents, it is best to hire a professional and experienced attorney. Trucking companies will jump at the first opportunity to persuade you into a less than fair settlement, especially if they know you are not represented. Particularly when multiple parties or people are involved in the accident, as is very common with large truck accidents, they will do their best to avoid payout.
If you are unsure whether you are at fault or not in the accident, or if you need some guidance on what your next steps should be, contact us today for a free evaluation. The attorneys at Buckingham & Vega are here to help you and your family. Allow us to review your case and better guide you through the process. You do not have to endure a large case on your own. Call today for your free consultation (505) 388-0066.