There are many large trucks such as large construction vehicles, dumb trucks, garbage trucks and other trucks that use the roads throughout New Jersey. These trucks provide a number of services for the local economy but they can also cause fatal accidents. In fact, the number of large truck crashes in the U.S. increased to 4,317 in 2016 from 4,074 in 2015 according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety administration (FMCSA).
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In New Jersey and New York, there were about 158 fatal crashes a year involving trucks. You need to consult a lawyer if you or your loved one is injured in a collision with a large commercial truck.
Major Factors Behind Tractor-Trailer Crashes
One-third of fatal truck accidents every year are a direct result of the truck driver’s errors according to the FMSCA. The following are some of common factors that lead to truck accident:
- Failure to yield right of way
- Impairment caused by fatigue, illness, drugs or alcohol
- Failure to keep in proper lane
- Careless driving contributes
Inadequate truck maintenance and inspection, defective truck parts, or dangerous road conditions can also cause a truck accident. In some cases, a collision with a commercial vehicle can entitle you to more money than a collision with another car. So consult a lawyer that knows the in and outs of motor vehicle law and knows how to negotiate with insurance companies.
Who Is Responsible For The Accident
Since it is not always the driver’s error that causes an accident, it is important to know who else can be held liable for a truck accident. This is especially true when the driver’s negligence that led to a serious accident was on behalf of the trucking company, owner of the truck or trailer, truck driver’s employer, or the trucking company. This means that a corporation can be held responsible for the accident if:
- They hired drivers without conducting background checks
- Hired drivers that have a history of traffic violations
- Did not offer enough training or supervision for its drivers
- Overloaded truck or trailer
- Did not inspect or maintain the truck or trailer
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Contact your lawyer as soon as you can after the accident because insurance companies will be sending their insurance adjusters to the scene to protect their interests. Insurance companies may also try to negotiate with you about your claim without a lawyer present. They do this so that they can convince you to accept the smallest amount of payout irrespective of your medical expenses or the extent of property damage. An experienced lawyer has the resources and skill needed to negotiate with insurance companies. If these companies refuse to compensate you, your lawyer will move quickly to build a solid case against them in court so that you can get the compensation you deserve. Your lawyer will do the following to collect evidence for your case:
- Investigate the accident scene and reconstruct the accident with the help of experts
- Collect and review your medical records
- Obtain and review the police and accident reports
- Interview witnesses