What Should I Know About Truck Accident Lawsuits in Georgia?
Each year, there are thousands of severe truck accidents in Georgia. Truck wrecks can cause tremendous devastation and injure many people.
Truck accident victims are entitled to recover full compensation for all their pain and suffering.
Since commercial trucks are larger and heavier than other vehicles, it is common to think that trucking lawsuits are relatively easy to secure. However, trucking cases are more complicated and challenging to litigate compared to typical car wreck cases.
In this blog, we take a look into the many circumstances that affect truck accidents that might not factor into car accidents at all, such as liability, causes, and evidence.
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Liability of Trucking Accidents
Since Georgia is an at-fault state, the person who caused the accident covers the damages, like medical expenses and vehicle damage.
In a car accident, the driver is the only one liable, but in a truck accident case, it varies.
Common Causes of Trucking Accidents
Determining the cause of the truck accident injury is an essential aspect of the lawsuit as it can help show that the other party was negligent.
Truck accidents in Georgia are caused by many different factors. Some of the sources involved the following:
- Driver Error
- Truck Equipment Failure
- Bad Weather Conditions
- Improper Loading of the Truck
Driver error is one of the most common reasons for trucking accidents. Drivers are human, and thus, they make mistakes. They can commit different forms of negligence, including; distractions, fatigue, inattention, or substance abuse, affecting a driver’s ability to react to the dangers on the road.
Truck Equipment Failure
Equipment failure is the second leading cause of all commercial vehicle crashes. This may include design and manufacturing errors such as defective tires or poor maintenance. The trucking company and the drivers are responsible for maintaining proper vehicle maintenance and inspections to ensure that their trucks are operating correctly before hitting the road. However, not all truckers perform this pre-trip inspection, while those who do may not find the defective equipment, which may cause problems in the future.
Bad Weather Conditions
Weather conditions also play a significant part in road safety. Bad weather often leads to wet and icy road conditions, so truckers have the responsibility of driving safely during inclement weather and making adjustments to their driving patterns.
Improper Truck Loading
The responsibility of properly loading and securing a truck is the truck driver’s. The driver should equally distribute the cargo throughout the trailer. An uneven load can cause a significant number of accidents ranging from rear-end, rollover, jackknife, or sideswipe accidents, causing severe injuries and even death.
Trucking Accident Evidence
After the accident, any evidence that could prove liability to the other party should be gathered. Evidence would not only verify fault but would also help discover every potential defendant.
The evidence of a truck accident is divided into three distinct categories:
- Basic information such as name, contact information, and the company name of the truck driver
- Qualifications and training files of the driver
- Insurance information
- Driver’s license number
- Drug and alcohol test results if administered after the crash
Federal regulations require truckers to drive for a limited time as truck drivers often sacrifice sleep and rest to deliver cargo at a specific place and time. The driver’s log where truck drivers write down the hours they drove can contain relevant information for your case.
Any damage done to the plaintiff’s vehicle during the accident is another crucial piece of evidence for your case. The visible damages are tell-tale signs of what happened during the crash. Don’t get your vehicle repaired immediately, or vital evidence that would be helpful for your case would be erased.
The defendant’s vehicle information should also be included, especially the maintenance history, documentation, and inspection history.
The documentation of what was being hauled, the weight tickets, trip envelopes, dispatch instructions, delivery documents, and bills of lading would be beneficial when determining if the cause of the accident was improper loading.
In addition to driver information, vehicle evidence, and cargo, it would also be helpful if you obtain a copy of a police report. The police report contains important details about the accident, including the accident location, people involved, weather conditions, and witness statements.
Photographs should show the damages of both vehicles and the injuries that you sustained from the crash.
You should immediately collect evidence since trucking companies typically send investigators to the crash scene on their behalf. These investigators are trained to protect trucking companies and quickly collect information from the crash scene to minimize the potential injury claim.
Related Blog: How Truck Weigh Stations Keep Drivers Safe
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It is essential to know what to do after a truck accident in Georgia or South Carolina. Hiring an attorney as soon as possible to start investigating on your behalf would help find key evidence from the accident, such as tire skid marks or debris, before they are no longer available.
A lawyer could also demand that the trucking company keep relevant information about the company driver involved in the crash, their logs, and drug and alcohol screening results post-collision.
If you have been injured in a truck accident in Georgia, the skilled commercial truck accident attorneys at The Brown Firm can help get you the compensation you deserve. Contact us today for a free consultation to discuss the nature of your case.
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