When vehicle accidents happen, the resulting injuries and damaged property can be significant; however, when a wreck involves an 18 wheeler or tractor-trailer, the aftermath can have far-reaching effects for everyone involved due to these vehicles’ sheer size and weight. If you were injured in such an accident, it can be important to understand how it might differ from a car accident and how this might affect any personal injury lawsuit you are planning to file.
1. Equipment Failure Can Be More Common
Tractor-trailer vehicles must be thoroughly inspected before their drivers take them out onto the highway, but in some cases, these large trucks malfunction and cause serious injury and death to other drivers. Under-inflated tires, faulty latches and doors that were not closed properly can all cause terrible accidents. If you believe the company failed to inspect its truck, you may be able to hold the owners liable for your medical bills and lost property.
2. Injuries May Be More Severe
Fully-loaded tractor-trailer trucks can weigh thousands of pounds and cause massive injuries to both drivers and passengers of other, smaller vehicles. When these trucks strike cars, the resulting bodily trauma can include brain injuries, loss of limbs and even death. You may want to catalog a complete list of your medical treatments and costs to submit to your attorney so he or she can place a value on the case.
3. Trucking Companies Carry More Insurance
Because of the inherent risk involved in trucking, many companies might pay up to $10,000 a year to insure their vehicles and loads. When an accident occurs, a company may try to place blame upon you to avoid having to pay on their insurance and see a climb in policy costs. Having an attorney assist you with such a case and to represent you when there is a question of negligence can improve your chances of gaining compensation for your injuries.
4. Property Damage Can Be Significant
When an 18 wheeler strikes your vehicle, the resulting damage could cause your insurance company to declare it a total loss. In many cases, the heavier the truck’s load, the higher the risk your vehicle could be destroyed. You may be able to claim the total value of your car in a lawsuit, especially if your attorney satisfies the burden of proof that the truck driver was completely at fault.
Being involved in a vehicle accident with a tractor-trailer can cause massive injuries and loss of property, but there are ways you can gain financial compensation. Speak to a truck accident lawyer in Trenton, NJ today for further information and to schedule an initial consultation.
Thanks to Davis & Brusca for their insight into personal injury claims and how tractor trailer accidents are different.