An accident with a big rig can be very devastating. The sheer size and weight of these large trucks can cause severe injury and damage to a vehicle. With more 18-wheelers on the road these days, it is understandable that they will become involved in more accidents than ever before.
If you have had the misfortune of being in an accident involving a commercial truck in San Bernardino County, you must know that the matter will likely be more complicated than it would be in a simple traffic accident. There are more people involved, including both the driver and owner of the truck, and you often need to have some knowledge of the industry to fully understand the potential case. The knowledge of the common reasons for trucking accidents, relationships between those who have to do with the truck, trailer and load, will all be helpful in determining the validity of your claim and presentation of your case.
The trucking industry is controlled by federal regulations that establish a set of standards and can determine the responsible party in a given trucking accident. Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations contains most applicable regulations. Fortunately, by working with a firm like the Duque Law Group you can put years of expertise in your corner to understand your rights under the law.
There is a large number of potential responsible parties in any truck accident. These include: the driver, the owner, whoever leased the truck from the owner, the manufacturer of the vehicle or any parts, shippers and loaders, etc.
In recent years, trucking companies have worked hard to side step liability for accidents by distancing themselves from the drivers, equipment, and vehicles. They have the required permits to operate the vehicles, but they often do not own the equipment that is used to haul whatever is in the truck. They also hire drivers as independent contractors rather than employees. These practices have enabled them to shift the responsibility over to the truck owner and driver.
However, federal regulations have fortunately made it so that any company who owns a trucking permit is liable for any accident that involves a truck with its name or placard on the vehicle.
Accident victims historically had to rely on witness statements and police reports to understand the specifics of an accident. Now, data from high tech devices and information from government agencies are also available for greater understanding.
The most frequent causes of truck accidents are driver error, mechanical failures, road design, weather conditions, and traffic signal failures.
Driver fatigue and sleep deprivation are by far the most common causes of trucking accidents; according to FMCSA, 88% of trucking accidents are caused by a driver’s action or failure to take action.
After driver error, the second leading contributor to truck accidents is equipment and mechanical issues. These can be design errors in the vehicles, manufacturing mistakes, or some other issue that interferes with the truck running smoothly. The majority of mechanical causes of these accidents are a result of a failure to maintain the equipment properly. These can include the following: jackknifing of a truck which is caused by the depowering or removing of the front brakes, failure of the brakes as a result of inadequate adjustments, blowouts of the tires because of wear and tear, truck rollover because of improper securing of the load distribution, defective steering, transmission failure, incorrect trailer attachment, defective lighting on the rears or sides of vehicles, and many more.
Truck accidents can be quite overwhelming because there are so many individuals involved. It can be quite difficult to navigate through the events and responsible parties without the help of someone who is knowledgeable and skilled with trucking law. If you have been injured in a truck accident in the state of California, the Duque Law Group has the expertise and experience to be able to help you figure out who exactly is responsible so that you can proceed with a strong case and get the reparations that you deserve for your suffering. You will want a San Bernardino County Trucking Accident Lawyer to help you in your case after a truck accident, and the Duque Law Group is here to help you. Call our office today or leave a message for us online.
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