Colorado Springs CO Truck Accident Lawyer
Trucking accident claims can be complex. Since commercial vehicles are much larger than other motor vehicles, your injuries may be more severe. And insurance companies and trucking company representatives may try to take advantage of you. If you suffered injury in a truck accident, you need the assistance of a Colorado Springs CO truck accident lawyer who can help you deal with the legal aspects of your claim as well as help you recover compensation for you injuries. Call Brylak Law at (866) 496-3815 to speak to an experienced injury attorney today.
Types of Truck Accidents That Occur in Colorado Springs CO
An accident with a truck can happen at any time on any road. However, they most commonly occur on highways with other vehicles. These crashes often involve serious injuries and devastating losses.
Common truck accidents may involve the following:
- Crashes with multiple vehicles, including buses, cars, and motorcycles
- Incidents with bicycles
- Pedestrian accidents
- Collisions with deer and other animals
A Colorado Springs CO truck accident lawyer can correspond with other parties that may have been involved in the accident.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents in Colorado Springs
It’s important to determine the exact cause of a truck accident so that you know who is responsible for your losses. Common causes of truck accidents include:
- Driver negligence or trucker error
- Speeding and other violations of traffic laws
- Drowsy driving and fatigued driving
- Failure to properly train drivers
- Distracted driving and texting while driving
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Failure to maintain the vehicle
- Work zones and unsafe roads
- Dangerous weather conditions
- Reckless or aggressive driving
- Improperly loaded trucks
Driver Negligence in Truck Accidents
Driver negligence can take a number of forms. For instance, if the driver was not obeying any of the laws of traffic then the driver is responsible for the accident. In tort lawsuits, a company can be held liable for the conduct of any of their employees. This includes employees who were driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. This is known as vicarious liability.
If the truck company or its employee is responsible for the accident, you may be able to either make a claim on their insurance policy or sue them directly. In cases where the trucking company’s own negligence voids their insurance policy or their negligence shows a disregard for the safety of others, it may be in your best interests to sue the company.
For instance, trucking companies are required by federal and state laws to conduct drug tests on their employees. If they neglect this duty and it is discovered that their insurance policy requires them to be in compliance with these laws, then an injured driver might not be able to make a claim on the company’s insurance policy.
In other cases, especially in cases of a wrongful death, and their insurance policy may not cover the plaintiff’s total damages. In this case, if the insurance company tenders a settlement offer at the policy limit, it may be best to reject that offer and sue the company directly.
Failure to Maintain the Vehicle
The trucking company is also responsible for the maintenance of the vehicle. This means checking that vehicle is fit to drive before it has been cleared to go on the road. In fact, the Department of Transportation has a pre-trip maintenance checklist that trucking companies are encouraged to perform at regular intervals. This includes checking items such as:
- The tires. Tire failure is one of the most common causes of commercial trucking accidents. This is especially true of larger vehicles that have larger tires. Since the load on the tire is greater, the risk that the tread separates is also greater. In some cases, this can be attributed to a defective tire. In other cases, it is the trucking company’s failure to maintenance the tires properly or replace them after the warranty has run out that caused the problem. When a tire fails on a tractor-trailer the results can be catastrophic. After the tread separates, the tire blows out. At high speeds, the driver can lose control of the truck causing major accidents with multiple cars.
- The brakes. If something goes wrong with the brakes, it is generally caused by a failure to check them before the truck has begun its trip. If that failure causes an accident, the truck company is liable for any injuries that mechanical failure causes to third parties.
Third Party Liability
In cases where the trucking company could not have been reasonably expected to anticipate a mechanical failure, a third party manufacturer may be responsible. This is most often the case of tire companies that have manufactured defective tires. It’s exceedingly difficult to anticipate a tread separation, though, in some cases it is possible.
In some cases, however, the tire company has just manufactured a defective tire and therefore they’re most responsible for the accident.
Tires have wear-and-tear markets on them and are warrantied up until a certain amount. If the tires are no longer warrantied, then the trucking company is solely responsible for not changing the tire. If the tire is still under warranty, then it’s likely that the tire company bears at least some responsibility for the accident. The same holds true for any third-party manufacturer whose product is defective and causes an accident.
Another case of third-party liability is when there is an unsafe construction zone or unsafe roads. In these cases, you may be entitled to damages but you’ll be filing the lawsuit against the municipality whose responsibility it is to maintain the conditions. This can be difficult as municipalities protect themselves from civil liability with sovereign immunity. There may be restrictions on how much you can sue for or whether or not you can sue at all.
Truck Accident Liability
Once you determine the cause of your accident, you can hold the liable party responsible for your injuries and other losses. However, determining who is legally liable can be complex. A Colorado Springs CO truck accident lawyer can help you investigate and determine the liability of the following parties:
- Truck Driver – If the driver was negligent and worked for themselves as an independent contractor, then they may be the only liable party.
- Trucking Company – If the driver was an employee of a trucking company, they might be legally liable as well.
- Truck Designers and Manufacturers – If a defective truck part caused your accident, the truck designer or manufacturer may be responsible for your losses.
- Maintenance Company – Trucks need regular maintenance and frequent repairs. If those repairs were not properly completed, another company may be responsible for your wreck.
Sometimes more than one party is responsible for your damages. It’s important to identify all of the people and companies who are liable. If you fail to name any party in a lawsuit, the entire lawsuit may be dismissed. A Colorado Springs CO truck accident lawyer can help you determine liability and obtain compensation from those who owe you reparations.
Federal and State Trucking Laws
Both federal and state agencies impose regulations on truckers and trucking companies. They must comply with rules regarding hours of service, truck maintenance, truck loads, and more. If they fail to comply with Colorado rules or federal regulations, then they can cause a serious accident. A Colorado Springs CO truck accident lawyer can conduct an independent investigation to determine if all parties were in compliance with laws.
Truck Accident Compensation
When you are injured in a truck accident, you likely have many unexpected expenses. Although recovering financial damages will not help you heal, it can put your mind at ease in the middle of a difficult time. Our Colorado Springs CO truck accident lawyer can help you obtain compensation for the following:
- Medical bills
- Lost income and loss of earning capacity
- Damage to your vehicle and other property
- Disfigurement and disability
- Loss of enjoyment of life and Loss of consortium
- Burial and funeral costs, if you lost a loved one
- Punitive damages, if applicable
Although every truck accident is different, a Colorado Springs CO truck accident attorney can help you understand what your truck accident claim is worth.
Contact a Colorado Springs CO Truck Accident Lawyer Today
When dealing with the aftermath of a truck accident, you face a lot of stress. However, you don’t have to deal with it alone. A Colorado Springs CO truck accident lawyer at Brylak Law can help you make a claim and understand your legal options. Call us today at (866) 496-3815 for a free consultation.