Laws Regarding Truck Accidents
There are many laws and regulations established to help prevent these serious accidents from happening — but they still do.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations
All parties involved in the trucking business must comply with Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations. These include following the requirements for when drivers must take breaks, obeying maximum cargo weight laws, and many other aspects of trucking.
Texas Transportation Code
Truck drivers must also observe state transportation laws in Texas. Title 7 of the Texas Transportation Code specifically details what laws commercial drivers, trucking companies, and cargo companies must follow.
Statute of Limitations
In Texas, the statute of limitations for filing an injury claim is two years from the date of the accident. The statute of limitations is even shorter if the government was involved in the accident. Contact an attorney sooner rather than later to be confident that you have enough time to start your case.
Determining who is at fault for an accident is important in establishing whether there is a case for a personal injury lawsuit.
Who Could Be Held Liable?
There are several parties that can potentially be liable in a large truck accident. The liable party may be:
- The truck driver: If the truck driver was not paying attention or breaking the law in any way, they could be held liable for the accident.
- The trucking company: If the trucking company did not adequately train the truck driver or otherwise did not fulfill their responsibilities, they could be held liable.
- The truck parts manufacturer: If the parts manufacturer supplied a faulty part that contributed to the accident, they could be held liable.
- The person who loaded the cargo: If the cargo was loaded incorrectly or was more than the legal limit, then the cargo company could be held liable.
- Maintenance personnel: If the trucking company’s maintenance personnel did not adequately perform maintenance on the truck and their negligence contributed to the accident, they could be held liable.
Factors in Determining Liability
In addition to knowing who the potentially liable parties are, it’s also important to know what factors affect how liability is determined.
- The driver’s state of mind: Had they been driving for too long? Were they fatigued? Were they trained properly? The answers to these questions could impact liability.
- The injured party: Was the vehicle driver in any way at fault for the accident? If this is the case, then the damages received for the accident could be reduced by the percentage of fault assigned to them.
- Road conditions: Did poor weather combine with bad roads to create dangerous road conditions? This could also affect liability.
Filing a Personal Injury Claim
When an accident involving a large truck happens, it’s important to be aware of the steps you can take to pursue compensation.
If You’re the Victim
If you were the victim of a truck accident, you may be eligible to receive compensation for the accident. Speak with a personal injury attorney to find out if you can file a personal injury claim.
If You’re Representing a Loved One
When a large truck hits a smaller vehicle, the outcome can be devastating. In the worst-case scenario, the driver or passengers of the smaller vehicle may lose their lives. If this has happened to a member of your family, you are not alone. It is possible to hold the party that took the life of your loved one accountable for what happened.