In personal injury law, trucking accidents are vehicle crashes that involve a tractor-trailer truck, 18-wheeler, or any other large commercial vehicle. We tend to talk about these accidents a little differently than other vehicle accidents because they are more complicated, and they present a number of unique issues relating to both causation and liability.
A December 2018 AJC investigation reveals that “A motorcyclist is on life support at a local hospital Wednesday after being pinned under a cement truck in Clayton County”.
The defendants in the trucking accident cases are typically powerful, wealthy corporations that operate whole fleets of enormous trucks. Those companies are represented by dozens of lawyers, as well as insurance companies that have their own legal armies, too. As you can imagine, then, victims have an uphill climb toward justice. The corporate interests on the other side do everything they can to shield themselves from financial liability, even when the truck driver is clearly at-fault and the victims are clearly devastated. Indeed, the devastation is common in these cases. Commercial trucks are enormous, and they tend to travel at very high speeds. Even the sturdiest car, pickup truck, or SUV is no match for the sheer size and force of a speeding 18-wheeler. Victims are often left to pick up the pieces for themselves, unsure of where to turn for justice. Too often, the surviving victims are family members whose loved ones were killed in a horrible commercial trucking accident.
What Causes Most Georgia Trucking Accidents?
Commercial trucking crashes happen for many different reasons. Studies show us that the truck driver is usually at fault. There are a few explanations for that.
First, truck drivers are susceptible to the same kinds of negligence that plague so many other motorists, things like:
- Following too closely
- Failure to check blind spots before merging or making turns
- Texting while driving (or other smartphone use behind the wheel)
- Distracted driving
- Road rage
- Careless or reckless driving
- Failure to adjust driving behavior to weather or traffic conditions
- Running red lights or stop signs
- Violating traffic laws
Most commercial truck crashes, though, are caused by issues that are more specific to the trucking industry:
Drowsy driving – Trucking companies assign grueling schedules to their drivers. The state and federal governments have cracked down on that, regulating the amount of time that drivers can spend behind the wheel of a truck before getting some shuteye. But trucking companies frequently violate those laws. We’ll investigate to find out if that happened in your case. Moreover, even drivers who are technically in compliance with the rules may be too sleepy or overworked to drive safely.
Drugged driving – Recent federal studies presented shocking evidence that some form of drugged driving is responsible for an overwhelming number of commercial trucking accidents in this country. Often, these are legal prescription or over-the-counter medications that affect the driver’s judgment or energy. Even if the drugs are legal, driving under those conditions can constitute negligence.
Dangerous truck conditions – Trucking companies frequently overload their trucks or fail to make the necessary investments in properly maintaining their fleets.
Driver Inexperience / Bad Records – While truck drivers must meet special licensing requirements, many companies fail to thoroughly screen the drivers who they hire. Accordingly, inexperienced or unlicensed drivers sometimes end up in these jobs. Others have dangerous driving records or criminal history. Sometimes, even good drivers get into trouble when they travel unfamiliar routes late at night and on little sleep.
If you or your relative has suffered injury or death in a Georgia trucking accident, you may be entitled to a large amount of financial compensation (depending on the circumstances of the crash and the nature of the injuries). Many victims are surprised to discover that the law entitles them to much more money than they expected. T. Madden & Associates, P.C. is an aggressive Georgia personal injury law firm serving the metro communities of Atlanta and Augusta, with additional services available throughout The Peach State. Our experienced Georgia trucking accident attorneys are prepared to fight for the compensation that you deserve. We’ve represented many victims and families just like you. We’ve fought corporate giants in those cases – including some of the biggest corporations and insurance companies in the world – and we’ve frequently been successful in producing a financially advantageous outcome for the people whom we represent. Our Augusta truck accident attorneys and Jonesboro truck accident lawyers are there for you – we serve all of Georgia. Let us fight for you. Contact our Georgia trucking accident attorneys today.