Accidents with a semi-truck or tractor-trailer can be severe and are not always the truck driver's fault. These massive trucks can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, while most cars/passenger vehicles weigh below 4,000 pounds. The sheer size and weight of a truck are a big reason why truck accidents differ from car accidents and are often catastrophic. However, the reason commercial truck accident litigation is a field unto itself is because of the multiple third parties that can be held liable for damages.
Who Could be At Fault in a Commercial Truck Accident?
Many parties could be held liable for negligence if a semi-truck does not safely move from point A to point B. While every accident is different, below are some common parties that could be held liable for negligence.
- Cargo loaders. This refers to the personnel and company that loads the truck with products. They are responsible for ensuring a load is balanced and secured. If a truck is not properly packed, it could affect the handling of the truck or could lead to the spilling of contents within the truck or on the road. Thus, potentially causing immense danger to both the semi-truck driver and others on the road.
- Truck equipment manufacturing companies. A mechanical failure, tire blowout, or a faulty brake could all lead to a horrific accident that was out of the driver's control. If an equipment failure is found after the accident, the manufacturers could be responsible for the collision.
- The trucking company. An experienced attorney will investigate if the parent company cut corners or pushed a driver too hard to meet a deadline. The trucking company is also responsible for maintaining and inspecting each vehicle before a trip.
These are just a few examples of other parties that could be held liable in a commercial truck or tractor-trailer accident. Additionally, truck accident litigation involves very specific federal and state laws. A successful case will prove that negligence from one of these third parties was a contributing cause of the accident and influenced the damages. These big corporations are armed with fierce legal teams and a vast number of resources aimed at protecting the company instead of fairly paying out compensation to victims. Therefore, hiring a highly experienced truck accident attorney is essential to aggressively fight and protect your interests throughout the process.
Why Choose Bostwick & Peterson?
Led by James S. Bostwick and Erik L. Peterson, our team specializes in severe accidents and knows how to fight back against big corporations and insurance companies. Our award-winning attorneys are named among The Best Lawyers in America and have obtained record-setting results. For example, a $21 million verdict was obtained after a woman was injured when her car was struck by a truck - the largest non-punitive verdict for a single individual in state history. Please view more results here.
Working with skilled legal representation is critical if you or your loved one were harmed in a traffic accident involving a commercial truck. Our San Francisco attorneys at Bostwick & Peterson can help you evaluate legal options after a truck accident and explain what we can do to help. We offer free and confidential consultations. Please call (888) 831-8448 or fill out this online form to get started.