Philadelphia Truck Accident Lawyer
Drivers of trucks such as 18-wheelers and semis receive specialized training and education according to the federal and state regulations that govern commercial trucking. Perhaps in part because of this special training, a relatively small portion of highway accidents are caused by large trucks. Nevertheless, collisions between commercial trucks and smaller vehicles do occur, and when they do, they can be devastating.
1. Size and Weight
It may go without saying that commercial vehicles tend to be much larger than pickups, cars, and SUVs, but some people may not be aware of the full scale of the size advantage that a large truck has over a regular-sized vehicle. While the weight of an average car is approximately 3,000 pounds, a semi truck carrying a full load can weigh more than 80,000 pounds. According to the laws of physics, a collision between a car and a semi is likely to do a lot more damage to the smaller vehicle and its driver. This theory is supported by statistics demonstrating that while less than 60% of fatal passenger vehicle crashes involve multiple vehicles, that portion is about 80% for crashes involving large trucks. Furthermore, injuries resulting from a trucking accident are likely to be much more severe.
2. Multiple Parties At Fault
There are many different parties involved in a commercial trucking venture, which means there are many potential defendants in a personal injury lawsuit resulting from a truck accident. A list of possible at-fault parties includes the following:
- Trucking company
- Mechanic responsible for the truck’s maintenance
- Person who loaded the truck
- Truck manufacturer
- Manufacturer(s) of individual truck parts
3. Different Causes
It is not only the multiple possible defendants that can cause confusion but the complicated circumstances that contributed to the accident. A significant contributing factor to truck accidents is often equipment failure, which could implicate several of the above-named parties. The cause may ultimately be a combination of driver error, equipment failure, and/or employer negligence.
4. Legal Difficulties
Because of the potential for large trucks to cause catastrophic accidents, trucking companies keep lawyers on retainer to defend them in the event of an accident. The driver’s log book, which contains crucial evidence related to the cause of a crash, sometimes goes missing after a collision, although recent requirements for electronic logging devices may prevent the loss or destruction of evidence in the future.
Over the course of a single year, trucking accidents may result in over 4,000 deaths and 77,000 injuries, many of which are severe. It can be difficult, if not impossible, to acquire just compensation on your own. Contact a Philadelphia truck accident lawyer from Wieand Law Firm, LLC to find out how one of our attorneys can help.