The majority of motor vehicle accidents involving a large truck or semi occur on major highways.
For this reason high speeds are most often involved and that, coupled with the fact that these large vehicles can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, is the reason why so many accidents involving large trucks involve severe injuries and death. On average there are 2,000 truck accidents in Missouri that result in personal injury each year. Of those, around 200 people lose their life.
Driving a large truck is a big responsibility. Since most travel great distances over state lines the federal government has its own regulations in place to monitor the trucks and their drivers. The sheer size of a commercial vehicle and its lack of mobility warrants these special regulations. They serve to help protect against collisions and subsequently the injury or fatality that may result from one. An adept Missouri truck accident attorney should be well versed in these regulations and know whether or not the driver and or his vehicle are in violation.
There are 5 common causes for accidents involving large trucks:
Fatigue: Federal law requires that a driver stop for meals at intervals, not exceeding 6 hours, and for a period of no less than 30 minutes. They also prohibit a driver from driving if they are fatigued or ill. A Missouri truck accident attorney will not only check logs to make sure that the driver adhered to the break laws, he will also check to see if the trucking company pressured the driver to reach his destination in an unreasonable amount of time.
Speeding: Again, your attorney should check to make sure that the driver was not speeding in an attempt to achieve an unrealistic deadline. A speeding 80,000 pound truck is no match for a passenger car in a collision.
Failing to maintain the vehicle: Having a truck in good repair is essential to truck safety and is the responsibility of the trucks owner. Your truck accident attorney will want to see all logs pertaining to the maintenance and check for ownership of the truck. If a 3rd party is found to be the owner, they too can be held liable in a civil suit.
Road conditions: An experienced truck driver should be aware that driving in slippery road conditions can be catastrophic and take the necessary precautions to ensure the safety of other motorists by either slowing down or pulling over until conditions improve.
Drugs and alcohol: Federal law requires that all drivers of commercial vehicles and large trucks be tested for drugs randomly.
Large commercial trucks are usually just one small element of a very large business or corporation. Unlike you, they have the means and money to hire lawyers who will attempt to keep your personal injury case open for years with frivolous arguments. Such delays in collecting your damages can be detrimental, especially if the injuries you sustain require ongoing care and therapy.
Contact a Missouri Truck Accident Lawyer
If you have been injured in a Missouri truck accident, contact The Hoffmann Law Firm. You can almost be sure the trucking companies will have legal representation. It is important to get on more than equal footing by having an experienced auto accident lawyer on your side.
To schedule a free consultation, call us at (314) 361-4242