Indiana 18 Wheeler Accident Lawyer
Commercial trucking accidents occur each year and can be deadly. The force and speed of such a sizeable vehicle impacting with smaller cars and trucks or forcing them into other obstacles often results in serious bodily injury, if not death, and significant property damage. If you’ve been injured in such an in a collision with a semi-trailer owned by a big trucking company, you need an18 wheeler accident lawyer to help you fight for compensation for the losses you incurred.
If you, or someone you know, is suffering from personal injuries after a large truck accident, don’t wait to contact our team of experienced Indianapolis 18 wheeler trucking accident claim lawyers at Indianapolis Injury Lawyers to protect your rights and recover the compensation you deserve.
How an Indiana 18 Wheeler Accident Lawyer Can Help
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) estimates that, of the 499,000 large truck crashes that were reported to the police in 2018, more than 111,400 accidents involved a fatality or personal injury. These statistics are alarming for anyone who spends a significant amount of time on the road, especially when you consider the devastating physical, emotional, and financial toll that these kinds of accidents take on the victims.
Collisions between a large semi-truck and a passenger vehicle may be caused by a number of different factors and can involve several potentially responsible parties. Additionally, they are usually more complicated and the injuries are more severe than simple fender benders between two cars. A skilled 18 wheeler accident lawyer understands what to look for and how federal and state regulations may impact your large truck accident and the injuries you sustained.
Experienced Indianapolis trucking accident claim lawyers know how to:
- Investigate the cause of your accident
- Determine the responsible party or parties
- Identify any rules or regulations that were violated
- Find any defective parts and gather all physical evidence
- Determine whether the roadway or weather conditions contributed in any way
- Build all possible legal theories to ensure your rights are protected.
A savvy Indiana 18 wheeler accident attorney may also perform an independent investigation to prove the truck driver or the trucking company was negligent. This investigation may include:
- Reviewing the driver’s logs to see if the driver was fatigued or violating work limit rules
- Requesting cell phone records for proof of distracted driving
- Inspecting the truck’s maintenance records to determine whether the vehicle was properly maintained on a required schedule
- Obtaining the information from the truck’s black box to see whether the driver tried to brake or take other action to avoid the accident
- Consulting with an accident reconstruction expert to examine the cause and effect of the accident
- Contacting witnesses and obtaining statements or testimony for future use
- Reviewing police records for evidence of impaired or drunk driving
- Preserving physical, documentary, photographic, and other relevant evidence that could be destroyed over time
- Performing other important tasks to build a case and claim full compensation from the responsible parties.
Successful Indianapolis 18 wheeler accident lawyers also understand the monetary damages likely given the facts of a case and how to prove your losses under Indiana law. When you work with an experienced personal injury lawyer from Indianapolis Injury Lawyers, you have working for you a legal team that has successfully taken on big trucking companies and their insurance carriers and can provide the best representation for people with 18 wheeler accident injuries.
Common Causes of 18 Wheeler Accidents
Commercial semi-trucks have become an increasingly common sight on our roads, a trend that is in large part attributable to the steady increase in interstate commerce, shipping, and transportation over recent decades. While this may provide our stores with a constant supply of food and other staples, it also means that all drivers are at a much higher risk of being in an accident with a large commercial truck.
The FMCSA released a Large Truck Crash Causation Study that identified the most common causes of semi-tractor accidents. While many situations can lead to a large truck accident, most crashes can be attributed to one of the following:
- Truck driver fatigue
- Driving while under the influence of prescription medications, alcohol, or other drugs
- Speeding, following too closely, or otherwise driving aggressively
- Distracted driving
- Tire blow-outs or jackknifing
- Roadway defects
- Mechanical failure including brake problems
- Cargo shifts or spills
If a driver falls asleep at the wheel, the driver may not be the only responsible party. The trucking company could also be responsible (and, therefore, liable) if it forced the driver to meet unreasonable deadlines.
Determining who was at fault for an 18 wheeler accident will have a significant bearing on how injured parties can collect compensation for their losses. At Indianapolis Injury Lawyers, we know what to look for to identify the party or parties that contributed to the cause of your accident.
Trucking Federal Rules and Regulations
To curtail the number of large truck accidents occurring on US roadways, the federal government instituted a series of regulations controlling trucking companies and their drivers. These rules cover several topics, including:
- Mandatory break times
- Vehicle weight limits
- Mandatory safety inspections
- Procedures for loading and unloading cargo
- Minimum driver training.
Unfortunately, not all trucking companies and their employees abide by these rules, which can have serious consequences for others on the road. Negligent companies and individuals can be held liable for their failure to comply with federal regulations. Potentially negligent parties include at-fault truck drivers, employers that fail to use reasonable care during the hiring and training process, the truck’s owner, and vehicle part manufacturers.
Let Our Indianapolis Trucking Accident Claim Lawyers Deal with the Insurance Company
Large trucking companies are legally required to carry substantially more liability insurance than typical passenger cars because of the greater potential of serious harm in a large truck-related accident. After a collision with a semi-truck, you will probably receive a call from the trucking company or its insurance carrier, who will encourage you to give a statement about the accident and settle your injury claim as soon as possible.
Insurance companies start creating a defense immediately following an accident. For example, the insurance adjuster may even tell you that you don’t need an attorney because attorneys only complicate things unnecessarily. This couldn’t be further from the truth. An Indiana 18 wheeler accident attorney is your most important ally if you are facing 18 wheeler accident injuries and need to recover monetary damages from the responsible parties.
Additionally, because trucking companies are only required to keep records such as driver’s logs, maintenance records, and other documents for a certain period of time, potentially relevant and important evidence can be lost if you wait too long to request these documents. The sooner you contact an 18 wheeler accident lawyer about your crash, the better protected you will be. Let your attorney deal with the aggressive insurance adjusters while you focus on recovering from your accident.
Finding the Right Indiana 18 Wheeler Accident Lawyer to Handle Your Case
Our team of dedicated Indianapolis 18 wheeler accident lawyers is led by our founders, Bradley Keffer and Tom Hirschauer. We understand the complexities of large truck crash cases and are prepared to take on the big companies and fight for you from initial claim negotiations to a full jury trial if needed to protect your rights.
If you have been injured as a result of a negligent truck driver or irresponsible trucking company, the team at Indianapolis Injury Lawyers is here to help. Contact us today at (317) 455-4043 or complete our online contact form to schedule an appointment with an experienced and compassionate 18 wheeler accident lawyer who will answer all of your questions and help you receive the money damages you deserve.