Trucking companies and their employees have a responsibility to keep other drivers safe on the highway. When they fail to fulfill this responsibility, they can be held liable for their actions, and you, the injured party, may be entitled to compensation.
Taking on truck accident lawsuits can be challenging because there is a complex system of state and federal laws governing commercial vehicles, and the liable parties are motivated to fight aggressively to avoid paying damages.
At DeMayo Law Offices, Your North Carolina Law Firm™, we’ve been protecting the rights of truck accident victims for over 30 years. Our experience can help you navigate through these challenges and maximize settlements to ensure victims and their families are taken care of.
Call our truck accident law firm today at (866) 338-7477 for a free consultation, or tell us about the accident online.
Why You Need a Lawyer:
Big Trucks, Bigger Accidents
Truck accidents come with a mess of regulations, corporate interests, and challenges far different than other types
of vehicle accidents.
The trucking companies, for one, are made up of a large group of players including drivers, employers, cargo loaders, maintenance crews, and parts manufacturers each responsible for the truck’s safety. When the safety is compromised, liable parties, and in some cases multiple parties, can be held responsible for damages.
Trucking companies also have powerful teams of attorneys to defend their financial interests. The multiple insurers involved can act just as aggressively to conserve their money. And because of their commercial function and the risks they pose, trucks are subject to regulations beyond those that apply to personal vehicles. Some truck regulations are federal and apply nationwide. Other rules vary from state to state and thus depend on the exact location of the accident.
This makes for a complex legal situation in the event of an accident – one that requires an expert DeMayo Law Offices truck accident attorney to navigate. Our North and South Carolina DeMayo Law Offices truck accident lawyers will know how to investigate your accident, deal with the number of insurance companies that will inevitably be brought in on the case, prove the at-fault parties are liable, and demand a comprehensive financial statement for your truck accident case.
Why choose us?
DeMayo Law Offices has protected the rights and interests of truck accident victims in North Carolina for over three decades.
With over 150 years of combined legal experience and more than 125,000 resolved personal injury cases under our belts, we have a deep understanding of the region’s trucking rules and regulations so that we can approach your truck accident claim with both confidence and compassion.
We settle most of our truck accident cases before they go to court, which makes the process more comfortable for our clients. Nonetheless, if it proves necessary in your case, we’ll represent your interests aggressively through litigation to win you the fair compensation you deserve.
At DeMayo Law Offices, Your North Carolina Law Firm™, our lawyers can help you pursue compensation for:
Call DeMayo Law Offices at (866) 338-7477 for a free consultation or contact us online.
Trucking Laws, Rules,
Why the regulations are different
Generally, Commercial Motor Vehicles (CMV) and “large trucks” refer to vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) greater than 10,000 pounds. This might include several types of vehicles, such as semi-trucks, tractor-trailers, flatbeds, 18-wheelers, buses, large shuttles, delivery trucks, etc.
These vehicles often include features that make them particularly dangerous on the road and in an accident.
Trucks require longer stopping distances.
Cargo can shift and affect the maneuverability of a truck.
Large trucks often transport dangerous or hazardous materials.
CMVs are often equipped with air brakes (as opposed to hydraulic brakes), which can be dangerous if not properly maintained.
How this affects the driver
Because of these and a number of other features, operating and maintaining a CMV isn’t easy. It comes with responsibilities that exceed what’s expected of other drivers and are enforced by both state and federal regulations. These regulations address the heightened risk that CMVs pose to other drivers on the road. They are meant to minimize the possibility of large truck drivers causing collisions with personal vehicles.
For example, commercial truck drivers:
Are required to maintain a current commercial driver’s license
May not exceed daily driving limits
Can’t drive fatigued
Cannot drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs
Cannot overfill a truck beyond its maximum weight or capacity
Are responsible for regular brake and tire inspections
Beyond the driver
Furthermore, there are rules and regulations that reach beyond driver behavior—these rules must be followed by other members of the supply chain to ensure safety on our roadways.
Trucking companies must make sure that hazardous materials are appropriately labeled, classed, described,
packaged, and marked.
Employers must routinely have their drivers submit to drug and alcohol testing.
All trucking companies must maintain a mandated
level of insurance.
Records of maintenance must be kept and organized.
Employers can only hire healthy, qualified, English-speaking drivers; they must also keep a record of each driver’s route, their hours, traffic violations, accidents, and drug
screening test records.
If a driver or trucking company fails to follow all the applicable rules and regulations, they may be held liable for any injuries or damages they cause.
If you have been involved in a truck crash, an experienced truck accident attorney at the North Carolina and South Carolina DeMayo Law Offices can investigate whether any regulations were broken and if broken, how they contributed to the crash. From there, we can help you determine the best path to compensation for the damages you have suffered.
Contact an experienced truck accident attorney at the North Carolina DeMayo Law Offices to help you determine the best path to compensation for your damages.
Types of Truck Accidents
Sometimes, an accident can be credited to one particular misstep by a driver or trucking company. In other cases, multiple parties cause a crash.
For instance, if a truck driver was drunk at the time of an accident, your attorney may decide to seek compensation from that individual and their insurance company.
In other scenarios, like if a vehicle was poorly maintained, the truck’s owner may be held liable. Some crashes are caused by faulty machinery, meaning a third-party parts manufacturer may be held financially responsible.
Here are some of the possible causes of truck accidents:
A truck accident is any traffic accident involving a passenger car and a commercial truck. Commercial trucks are on the road every day and can include garbage trucks, tractor-trailers, delivery trucks, gasoline trucks, and any other large, commercial vehicle.
Are truck accident claims more difficult than car accident claims?
Generally, yes. Truck accident claims can be more difficult because there are more factors that can contribute to the truck accident itself, as well as the ensuing claim. For instance, there are different rules and regulations trucking companies and truck drivers must follow. There are also more parties involved in the claim, such as the trucking company’s insurance, insurance on the truck specifically, and the truck owner’s insurance.
An experienced truck accident lawyer at DeMayo Law Offices will be able to sort out all of the different factors for your truck accident claim, along with the truck accident information and all necessary medical records.
I was involved in a truck accident where the truck jackknifed. Is the truck driver automatically liable for the truck accident?
Not necessarily. Simply because a truck jackknifes does not mean any resulting accidents are automatically the truck driver’s fault. Often times, the circumstances of the truck accident must be reviewed to determine who is liable for the truck accident.
If something such as another driver or undesirable weather conditions caused the truck to jackknife, or if the driver purposely jackknifed the truck to avoid a catastrophic situation, the truck accident may not be the fault of the truck driver.
Why are truck accidents more serious than car accidents?
Truck accidents are more serious than car accidents because of the sheer size difference of the vehicles involved. An average commercial truck can weigh upwards of 70,000 pounds, while an average passenger car weighs around 3,000 pounds. Commercial Truck accidents involve significantly more property damage and serious medical problems.
North Carolina Truck
Accident Facts and Statistics
According to the most recent data, there were more than 14,000 large truck accidents in North Carolina in 2016. More than 150 people were killed in these accidents and thousands were injured.
Here’s a quick look at important facts and statistics related to large
truck accidents in North Carolina and throughout the US.
The most crashes
In 2016, tractor-trailers/semi-trucks were involved in the most crashes (4,464); subsequently, these vehicles caused the most truck accident injuries (1,238) and fatalities (62).
The second most crashes
Single unit trucks, or those with two axles and six tires, were the second most common vehicle to cause a large truck accident: there were 4,179 accidents, more than 1,000 injuries, and 38 people died.
A range of vehicles
Large truck accidents involve a range of vehicles including single unit trucks, tractor-trailers, semi-trucks, 18-wheelers, and other commercial motor vehicles (CMVs).
There are several types of commercial vehicles
Commercial motor vehicles also include buses, garbage trucks, delivery vans, hotel and airport shuttles, moving trucks, and other common, heavy vehicles.
State tracked statistics
Our state tracks crash statistics for a variety of these vehicles as well. School and commercial buses, for example, were involved in almost 1,500 crashes, resulted in 6 fatalities, and injured almost 500 people.
Accidents increasing year over year
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), large truck and bus accidents across the US increased by two percent year-over-year and 29 percent since 2009.
Contact the North and South
Carolina DeMayo Law
If you’ve been in an accident involving a large truck or CMV, you don’t have to fight the truck driver or trucking company on your own.
A DeMayo Law Offices attorney will stand by your side and help you secure the compensation you deserve from these well-resourced companies. We’ll protect you from their aggressive money-conserving tactics.
Even if you are unsure of whether you want to pursue legal action at this time, we can talk you through the legal options available to you for financial recovery. We understand that you have difficult decisions to make in the aftermath of your accident. We want you to be informed, so we offer free, no-obligation consultations to all potential clients.
Call DeMayo Law Offices in North and South Carolina at (866) 338-7477 to discuss your legal options or tell us about the accident online to get started now!
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