An 18-wheeler truck accident in Johns Creek is usually devastating. The sheer size of a large truck can lead to life-threatening injuries or death during a collision. If you or a loved one were victims of this type of accident, contact a Johns Creek 18-wheeler accident lawyer.
A truck accident can cause costly medical bills, a huge loss in income, a totaled vehicle, and more. In the worst-case scenario, victims become permanently disabled or lose their lives. But no one should have to pay for the costs of an accident that wasn’t their fault.
After your truck accident, contact John Foy & Associates. Our lawyers are not afraid of huge or complicated cases. We’ll handle the legal details while you focus on recovery. Plus, we don’t charge a fee unless we win you compensation. Call us at (404) 400-4000 or contact us online for a free consultation.
Why 18-Wheeler Accidents Happen
An 18-wheeler is an enormous type of commercial truck. It contains a tractor and at least one semi-trailer for transporting cargo. Other names for 18-wheeler trucks include:
- Big rigs
These trucks are hazardous in an accident for many reasons. For one, their sizes are enormous. If they get into a collision, the damages are unmatched—and often deadly.
Some of these trucks also carry dangerous freight that might spill onto the road, causing more injuries. Certain materials might cause fires or explosions upon impact.
So, why do these 18-wheeler accidents happen in the first place? Here are some of the most common reasons.
Commercial truck drivers have strict deadlines and rigorous working conditions. Many trucking companies set long workdays with minimal rest.
Companies must follow regulations from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). But drivers or companies might cut corners anyway. Even when they do follow the rules, the job’s stress and pressure can make it hard to get decent rest.
Driver fatigue is widespread among commercial drivers. Truckers are especially likely to become drowsy or irritable behind the wheel. If a trucker isn’t careful to rest, they can fall asleep or make dangerous mistakes while driving.
Wide Truck Turns
Eighteen-wheelers cannot make turns like regular cars and trucks. Before a large truck can turn, the driver must swing wide. For example, the driver has to swing left before beginning a right turn.
Some drivers fail to notice that a truck driver is turning. The other driver might assume the trucker is changing lanes or going straight. If the other driver tries to pass the truck on the wrong side, it can cause a catastrophic accident.
Unsafe wide turns are a common cause of large truck accidents. The trucker, another driver, or a combination of both could be at fault.
Truck drivers must ensure their cargo is correctly loaded and secured. If not, the contents can shift during the trip and lead to an accident. The driver or the loading company could be at fault for what happens.
Equipment that a driver must check for safety includes:
- Tires and wheels
- Loaded cargo
- Securement of cargo
- All vehicle lights
- Fuel system
Truck drivers should be cautious about speeding on the highways. Unfortunately, some truckers speed excessively due to deadline-related pressure. A trucker might also speed because of boredom, aggression, or other factors.
Drug or Alcohol Use
Truck drivers have hard deadlines to meet, and they are on the roads for very long shifts. This can lead some drivers to abuse substances like drugs or alcohol.
Driving under the influence is not only illegal, but it’s also incredibly dangerous. An intoxicated person driving an enormous truck is one of the worst situations. Unfortunately, it is common and leads to deadly accidents.
A bored or overworked driver might become distracted by their phone or other things. Distracted driving can be as dangerous as drunk driving in many situations. Truck drivers should be careful to avoid distractions that interfere with their driving.
Knowing Who’s Liable for an 18-Wheeler Accident in Johns Creek
Commercial truck accidents are more complicated than your average car accident. That’s because more than one party might be liable.
Most truck drivers are employees. Under the Official Code of Georgia Code (OCGA) §51-2-2, an employer is usually liable for their employee’s actions. Even though the driver caused the accident, the trucking company might be responsible.
Contact a lawyer who understands federal trucking laws and regulations. They can look at your case and determine who was at fault. Most of the time, you’ll need to bring a claim against the trucking company for your damages.
Handling the Insurance Companies
Trucking companies usually have huge insurance companies. But that doesn’t mean you’ll easily win compensation. The insurance company will do everything it can to reduce what it pays.
Insurance companies care most about their bottom line. The adjuster’s job is to settle quickly and for very little. In some cases, the insurer might deny your claim altogether. Common insurance company tactics include:
- Offering you a lowball settlement upfront
- Using something you’ve said against you
- Downplaying your accident injuries
- Questioning your injury damages
- Asking you to give a recorded statement
Do not accept any money or sign anything without speaking to a lawyer first. The insurance company might make their offer seem like a good deal. But it’s rarely enough to cover a fraction of your damages.
Common 18-Wheeler Accident Damages
Truck accidents cause some of the worst collision-related injuries. Common examples include:
- Broken bones
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Neck and back injuries
- Third-degree burns
- Cuts and lacerations
- Spinal cord injuries
- Internal organ bleeding
- Wrongful death injuries
These injuries can cost tens of thousands of dollars or more. They might leave a victim unable to work or move. The effect on themselves and their family can be devastating.
Many accident injuries result in death. If a loved one died because of an 18-wheeler accident, you might have a wrongful death claim. Talk to a lawyer about bringing a case on behalf of your loved one.
Talk to a Johns Creek 18-Wheeler Accident Lawyer
You shouldn’t have to pay for a truck accident you didn’t cause. If you or a loved one were injured in an 18-wheeler accident, don’t wait to take action. Contact a Johns Creek lawyer to help you get started.
John Foy & Associates can provide the best attorney for you and your family’s needs. Contact us today to discuss the details during a free consultation. There are no strings attached, and we don’t get paid unless we win your case.
Call us at (404) 400-4000 or contact us online to get started with a free consultation.