Nampa Semi Truck Accident Attorney

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) there were 4,440 large commercial trucks and buses involved in fatal crashes in 2016. Between 2015 and 2016, the number of large trucks involved in fatal crashes per 100 million miles remained constant at 1.46.  Seventy-two percent of those killed in a semi-truck crash were those in passenger vehicles rather than the truck driver or passengers in the truck. About two percent of the truck drivers involved in a semi-truck accident in 2016 had a BAC of .08 or higher, and large truck drivers involved in fatal crashes in 2016 had the highest percentage of previous crashes compared to drivers of other vehicle types.

An accident with a large commercial truck is almost always more catastrophic than an accident between two passenger vehicles. A fully loaded commercial truck can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds, while the average passenger vehicle weighs about 4,000 pounds. Because of the disparity in size and weight, those involved in a semi-truck accident often receive serious, even fatal injuries. Additionally, there are a number of complexities associated with semi-truck accidents which are not seen with accidents between two passenger vehicles.

In addition to the size disparity between a semi-truck and a passenger vehicle, a large commercial truck may be carrying hazardous or flammable materials. When hazardous or flammable materials are on board, there can be secondary injuries from the dangerous cargo in the event of an accident. The theory of liability in a semi-truck accident is the same as in most personal injury cases involving vehicles—negligence. Therefore, if you are injured in a semi-truck accident your truck accident attorney must show the following:

  • The defendant (truck driver, trucking company, truck loading company, truck maintenance company or truck manufacturer) owed you a duty of care;
  • The defendant breached his or her duty of care, and
  • The defendant’s breach resulted in your injuries.

Defendants in a Semi-Truck Accident

Unlike a regular passenger vehicle accident, there can be a number of defendants in a truck accident and it is important to identify each of them. The truck driver could be liable if he or she was distracted, fatigued, impaired or driving in a reckless or careless manner. The truck company could be liable if they failed to ensure the truck driver was properly trained or failed to conduct a thorough background check on the truck driver. The maintenance company could be liable if it failed to properly maintain the truck, and that lack of maintenance resulted in the accident.

The loading company could be liable if they improperly loaded the cargo onto the truck, and shifting cargo caused the accident. Finally, the manufacturer of the truck or truck parts could be liable for the accident if the collision was the result of a defective part.  If the truck driver is an independent contractor, then the issue becomes more problematic. The amount of supervision the trucking company exercised over the driver would then become a key factor in determining who is liable for the accident.

Damages in a Semi-Truck Accident

Damages following a large commercial truck accident could include medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, lost future earnings, pain and suffering, and, in certain cases, punitive damages. Following a collision with a large truck, you will likely have a significant amount of medical expenses. Often your health insurance simply will not cover the level of medical expenses you will face. You are likely to be off work for a significant amount of time—or perhaps you will never be able to return to work. In addition to your lost wages, you may have a lost of earning capacity in that you are unable to work or are forced to take a lesser-paying job. You may suffer both physical pain and emotional suffering. While pain and suffering can be difficult to calculate, your experienced Idaho personal injury attorney will know where to start with these calculations.

Truck accidents which cause traumatic physical injuries can also result in psychological injuries in the form of mental anguish, grief, anxiety, depression, sadness and post-traumatic stress disorder.  Serious truck accidents can lead to catastrophic injuries such as traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury and amputations, all of which could leave you with a permanent disability. A serious accident can also leave you disfigured, with severe scars or other injuries which negatively impact your appearance.  You may suffer a loss of enjoyment of life, as well as a loss of companionship due to the severity of your injuries.

Getting the Help You Need Following a Semi-Truck Accident in Nampa, Idaho

If you are the victim of a semi-truck accident in Idaho, you could benefit from speaking to an experienced Nampa large commercial truck accident attorney. As the victim of a large commercial truck accident, our attorneys will breakdown and reconstruct the scene of your accident, determining whether the crash involved driver error, faulty mechanical equipment, improper loading techniques or trucking company error.

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