Truck Accident Lawyer New Orleans

Accidents involving big rigs, tractor-trailers, delivery vehicles, and all other commercial trucking vehicles, are more complex than other personal injury claims. These accidents are serpentine because it’s up to you and your personal injury attorney to determine who’s at fault and whether that be the driver, the employer, or the truck’s owner. 

Determining what went wrong is no amateur feat so it’s important to have an experienced truck accident attorney in New Orleans at your side. Understanding all the individuals entangled with the truck and load, common reasons for accidents, and who’s liable in your truck accident claim will help you uncover the damages you deserve. 

Louisiana Truck Accident Data

According to data compiled by the Lousiana State University, there were 2,190 trucking accidents resulting in injury in the year 2018, 1,801 resulting in property damage, and 95 fatal accidents. In the year 2017, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, there were 450,000 police-reported accidents involving large trucks with 344,000 resulting in an injury, and 4,237 were fatal. Trucking accidents put those involved at greater risk of major injuries because of the size and weight of the vehicles. 

Louisiana Trucking Regulations

The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development has outlined specific legal limitations for the weight and dimensions. The maximum weight allowed is between 20,000-88,000 pounds depending on its number and types of axels. The maximum width of a truck shall not exceed 102 inches excluding safety equipment. The maximum legal height for interstate highways is 14 feet and 13 feet 6 inches for non-interstate highways. For more information on the specifics of the legal limitations and exceptions for the type of truck involved in your accident, refer to the regulations handbook here

Trucking Accident Liability

In a trucking accident, at no fault of your own, responsibility may not fall solely on the driver but the following individuals may also share in the liability based on the details of your case:

  • The truck’s operator

  • The truck or trailer’s owner

  • The company or individual that leased the truck from the owner

  • The truck or truck’s equipment and parts manufacturer

  • The individual or company responsible for shipping or loading the truck’s contents

Under federal law, any company with a truck permit that has its name placarded on the side of the vehicle is responsible for all accidents involving that truck. Trucking companies would try to avoid blame by using tactics that made the leasing company or the driver solely responsible but federal regulations have instituted vicarious liability that holds companies responsible for the negligence of their drivers in most cases. Consult with an adept trucking accident attorney in the Jefferson Parish community if you have any questions about who is liable in your claim. 

Truck Driver Negligence and Liability

Negligence needs to be proved when you want to establish liability in your trucking accident case. In order to establish negligence, the defendant’s legal team needs to demonstrate one or more of the following:

  • The driver or company’s conduct caused the accident

  • The driver a duty to drive safely but did not

  • The company had a duty to maintain their vehicles, and hire responsible drivers but they did not

  • You suffered damages or injuries as a result of the injury

Trucking Company Liability

The FMCSA made regulations for trucking companies hiring drivers. Failure to meet these the following requirements could result in the trucking company being held vicariously liable: 

  • Background checks

  • Drug screen and conduct random drug scenes

  • Review drivers each year

  • Check driver’s records and driving history

  • Administer behind-the-wheel and road examinations

Recoverable Damages in a Trucking Accident

Being involved in an accident, at no fault of your own, can result in the following economic and non-economic damages:

  • Medical bills

  • Lost earning potential 

  • Lost salary due to missed work

  • Property damages

  • Mental anguish

  • Pain and suffering

  • Other miscellaneous expenses

Navigating a trucking accident can be difficult. Whether you’re trying to hold the trucking company or the driver responsible for being negligible, working with an experienced attorney could make all the difference. Insurance companies and their attorneys have lots of experiences forcing victims to accept less than what they’re owed. 

If you have suffered injuries or property damage due to the negligence of a trucking driver or company, then contact an adept trucking accident attorney in New Orleans right away to discuss your options.

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