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What to do after an 18-wheeler accident?

Semi-trucks keep America running. They transport products to stock grocery stores, retailers, medical supplies facilities, and much more. Fielding Law recognizes the value in the trucking industry, but we also recognize the risks and realities.

Truckers push themselves to get the job done while adhering to stringent time regulations. They sometimes speed to cover more ground and fall prey to the same distractions that cause passenger vehicle accidents across America. The difference is that when 18-wheelers cause accidents, the outcomes are much more severe. Standard cars, trucks, and SUVs don’t stand a chance against hulking 18-wheelers that can weigh up to 90,000 pounds or more fully loaded.

Why You Need an Attorney After an 18-Wheeler Accident

If you have suffered serious injury in an 18-wheeler accident and are considering filing a claim, an attorney is vital for many reasons. The damage that can come from an accident with an 18-wheeler is often insurmountable. Physically, emotionally, and financially, an accident with a truck can do catastrophic harm. Filing a claim afterwards may be the only way that you can receive fair compensation for damaged property, loss of income, and medical bills.

Obtaining Background Information

It is possible that there is information about the trucking company that may help your case. Large companies usually like to keep any unpleasant parts of their history hidden, making it extremely difficult for most people to access it. A lawyer will know how to look into the company’s history and see if they have had any pattern of damage or unsafe practices in the past. They will know what to look for and how to use that information to get you full compensation. If you can identify a pattern of harmful or negligent behavior, it can be an important factor in winning your case.

Dealing with Stubborn Insurance Companies

Even if the driver of the 18-wheeler admitted being at fault to you, the insurance company will most likely not be as honest. Insurance companies train their representatives to try and pay as little as they can in the aftermath of an accident. The insurance company will most likely offer you an amount that is significantly lower than what you deserve, hoping that you will accept the low compensation and trust that they are being fair and honest. Insurance companies also have a tendency to drag cases out for long periods of time. Delaying the resolution of your case is a tactic they use to try to get you to become frustrated and drop the claim. Insurance companies also may delay settling a claim until they can find a good enough reason to pay you less compensation than you deserve.

An attorney trained in 18-wheeler and trucking accidents will be know how to deal with trucking companies and aggressive insurers. They will know the strategies and tactics that insurance companies so often use and how to combat them. A trained truck accident attorney will make sure that the insurance company does not trick you or pay you less compensation than you deserve.

Giving You Time to Recover

If you recently suffered harm in an 18-wheeler accident, you need time to recover. Worrying about the legal complexities and technicalities of a personal injury case will add extra stress and anxiety to a time when you should be focusing on rest and healing. Hiring an 18-wheeler accident attorney that you trust will give you time to focus on physically and emotionally recovering from the incident.

Knows Legal Technicalities

Like all personal injury cases, 18-wheeler accident cases involve numerous specific rules and requirements. A trained truck accident attorney can help you work your way through all of the legal specifics for Texas truck accident cases. For example, personal injury cases have a statute of limitations; once that time period is over, a plaintiff can no longer file a case against the trucking company. An attorney will know your specific statute of limitations and make sure that you file your claim before your deadline is up. They can also help you navigate all the laws that Texas has for personal injury claims and personal injury cases. A skilled Dallas injury attorney will prevent you from losing your case because of a technicality or detail.

18-Wheeler Accidents in Dallas

People experience serious injuries and die in 18-wheeler accidents in Dallas every year. So far in 2017, several crashes have made headlines:

  • March 2017. An 18-wheeler swerved out of its lane and into oncoming traffic on Highway 271. It crashed into a school bus killing the bus driver and a track coach and injuring 18 students.
  • June 2017. A large truck carrying pigs on I-45 closed traffic in both directions when it collided with the median, turned over, and caught fire. Rescue personnel had to corral pigs across a 3- to 4-mile swath to prevent further accidents.
  • August 2017. A car struck an 18-wheeler almost head-on on I-45. The truck was on its way to the coast with hurricane relief supplies. The car caught fire and the driver and passenger died.
  • August 2017. A couple with car trouble, also on I-45, was trying to move their vehicle to the side of the road when an 18-wheeler failed to brake and move around them. Both suffered serious injuries.

These wrecks represent a small sample of the 18-wheeler accidents that occur in Dallas every year. Semi-trucks frequently pass through the city headed away from major ports on the coast and to destinations throughout Texas and beyond. With such a high rate of 18-wheeler traffic, accidents are bound to happen. If a truck driver causes a collision with you, you have a right to compensation under Texas laws.

Common Causes of 18-Wheeler Accidents

Auto defects can contribute to 18-wheeler accidents, but the majority of incidents involve driver error. Fatigue, improper loading practices, distractions, improper training, and poor maintenance often contribute to driver-caused trucking accidents. When passenger vehicle drivers contribute to 18-wheeler accidents, they may be fatigued, intoxicated, or distracted.

These driver errors can lead to unsafe driving behaviors including erratic swerving, a failure to brake, and driving at unsafe speeds. Rear-endings, rollover accidents, and head-on collisions are all common types of 18-wheeler accidents.

The Importance of Legal Representation After an 18-Wheeler Accident

After 18-wheeler accidents, trucking companies take swift action to protect their reputations and their bottom lines. Their insurers may reach out to accident victims with lowball settlement offers or try to pin the blame on a passenger vehicle driver instead of accepting responsibility. In any 18-wheeler claim, you may need the resources and skills of a personal injury attorney with experience handling commercial vehicle claims.

Fielding Law represents injured individuals and surviving family members in 18-wheeler claims against even the largest trucking companies. Our firm has experienced wrongful death attorneys and injury attorneys who accept every case on a contingency fee basis, and case evaluations are always free. Work one-on-one with your attorney and lean on us as you begin the recovery process after an 18-wheeler accident.

Contact a Dallas truck accident attorney at Fielding Law today for more information about our 18-wheeler accident practice. We’re here for you.