Back in March, a devastating truck accident involving a tractor trailer that detached claimed the lives of four people and injured two others. The accident occurred on U.S. 27 in Palm Beach County in the early morning hours. A trailer suddenly became detached from a truck, coming to rest in the middle of the roadway. The trailer was shrouded by the fog and multiple crashes resulted from drivers running into the trailer.
Given the massive size and weight disparity between a tractor-trailer combination and a passenger car, collisions between a big-rig and a car tend to cause severe injury to occupants of the automobile. Because trucking companies recognize their drivers log enough hours on the road that there is a high probability they will be involved in a trucking accident, commercial carriers prepare for future litigation in anticipation of future lawsuits. These strategies include on-call rapid crash response teams, extensive litigation resources, and creative use of independent contractor relationships. Our experienced semi-truck accident lawyers are familiar with these tactics and employ appropriate strategies for obtaining successful outcomes in trucking accident injury lawsuits. In this blog post, we examine a court decision where an appellate court rejects a trucking company's attempt to use independent contractor status to shield itself from liability.
While tractor-trailer accidents inherently involve complex issues, multi-car accidents are common when big-rigs are involved in a crash because the large vehicles can obstruct multiple lanes of traffic. When a collision involves the independent negligent actions of third parties who cause a single injury, defendants often point their finger at one another attempting to shift financial responsibility to the other party. This strategy can raise problems for injury victims because a trucking company typically will have far more insurance coverage than the truck driver or a third party driver. Causation issues also might arise when there are multiple drivers who independently contribute to the same injury. In this blog, our Miami semi-truck accident lawyers consider an appellate decision that reveals the complications involved when multiple drivers cause an accident.
Our Miami semi-truck accident attorneys recognize that trucking collisions differ from other motor vehicle accidents. A big-rig crash is not just a collision involving a large vehicle, a collision involving a vehicle that outweighs the other vehicle by 25 times poses special dangers. When a semi-truck collides with an automobile, any resulting serious injury almost always involves occupants of the other vehicle. Because trucking companies anticipate potential liability, they frequently are geared up to dispatch investigators to a crash site within a few minutes. The trucking industry also is notorious for manipulating evidence. For example, driver logbooks that are used to track hours of service and maintenance are derisively referred to in the industry as "lie books." This practice means that the issue of "spoliation" of evidence often arises in trucking litigation. While spoliation of evidence often is alleged against the trucking company, this blog examines a court decision in which the victim of an unsafe trucker faces these allegations.
Our Miami tractor-trailer accident attorneys recognize that 80-pound fully loaded big-rigs can cause catastrophic injury and horrific carnage. Although intoxicated drivers pose a serious danger no matter what type of vehicle they drive, the prospect of a drunken truck driver is especially frightening. In this blog, we consider a case decided by the Florida 2nd Court of Appeals that considered whether to deny recovery to the victim of an alcohol-impaired truck driver because the plaintiff was alleged to have misled the court.
Although the analysis of tractor-trailer accident lawsuits is not new to this blog, this article focuses on a tractor-trailer that was parked at the time of the collision. The enormous size and weight of semi-trucks create potential dangers even when the vehicles are stationary. The length and height of a tractor-trailer cause many blind spots for truck drivers, which are referred to as "no zones." These vehicles obscure the visibility of other motorists more significantly than a typical passenger car or even a large SUV. In this blog post, our experienced Miami tractor-trailer accident attorneys examine a Florida Court of Appeals decision involving a collision between a plaintiff and a parked semi-truck.
If you are involved in a big-rig collision, the impact on your life of an accident involving a vehicle that weighs 25 times more than a typical passenger car can be catastrophic. The outcome of a personal injury claim typically determines an accident victim's ability to obtain compensation for lost income, hospital bills, medical expenses, rehabilitation, pain and suffering, and other damages. Because some people do not immediately recognize the extent of their injuries, they procrastinate in terms of seeking legal advice and representation. Because plaintiffs are rarely successful in getting an adverse trial judgment reversed on appeal, time is of the essence in seeking legal representation from an experienced semi-truck accident attorney.
While many trucking accidents result from unrealistic shipping schedules, fatigued truck drivers, and poorly maintained big-rigs, improper loads also contribute to a significant number of collisions. Our Miami trucking accident attorneys recognize that the massive length and weight of a tractor-trailer mean that excessive loads, unbalanced loads, and poorly secured loads often interfere with proper handling and contribute to life-altering tractor-trailer collisions.
The prominence of the Internet and popularity of social network sites have dramatically changed the way people live their lives. It was not so long ago that privacy was so important to people that the notion of allowing others to monitor every aspect of a person's life would have been viewed as an unreasonable intrusion of privacy. Social networks have changed these societal norms. Many people now live in full view of virtual strangers and provide extensive details about every aspect of their daily activities. Our Miami trucking accident lawyers know that this choice to live one's life in full view of anyone who will watch and listen can create a serious problem if you are injured in a tractor-trailer accident.
Although vehicle occupants injured in trucking accidents have the right to pursue a lawsuit in Florida without legal representation, the decision to do so will virtually guarantee disastrous results. Commercial carriers and their insurance companies expect that truck drivers will be involved in accidents, so trucking companies anticipate litigation. Commercial carriers have rapid response investigation teams, a network of accident reconstruction experts, and extensive litigation resources all focused on denying or limiting the recovery for the injuries and fatalities caused by careless truck drivers and unsafe tractor-trailers.