If you are involved in an accident with a big rig, semi, or any type of commercial truck, it is important to call an experienced truck accident attorney as soon as possible. At Foley Law Firm, we are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and can dispatch an investigator to the accident scene immediately. Collecting and preserving evidence will help determine and prove liability for the collision. Truck drivers and their employers are strictly regulated, but motor carriers are required to keep their own safety violations records for only six months. This is another reason why the sooner we are involved in your case, the better.
Interstate commercial motor carriers are governed by the U.S. Department of Transportation and are subject to the federal government's rules and regulations. Trucks that are intra-state, by contrast, are governed by laws of the state in which they operate. Federal safety standards regulate interstate driver qualifications, the number of hours a truck driver can work, the type of cargo that can be transported, maintenance of the truck, and violations record-keeping. An experienced truck accident attorney knows the evidence to pursue and helps you avoid dealing with multiple insurance and risk management parties in resolving your case.
Not all truck accidents are the driver's fault, but we support our clients by thoroughly investigating the incident to establish liability. It is important that we speak with all available witnesses, preferably prior to any interviews with insurance representatives. Photos, police reports, and high-tech accident reconstruction techniques are part of the investigation. We also obtain access to records kept by the motor carrier. These companies are subject to strict oversight, receive safety evaluations, and must correct any defects noted in a timely manner. They are legally obligated to maintain logs of any safety violations recorded, which can be relevant to a truck accident case.
Controlling a large tractor-trailer or other commercial truck takes skill obtained by training, along with full concentration on the job. Truck drivers and motor carriers are held to strict safety standards, but unfortunately do not always adhere to them. Common causes of accidents involve truck driver fatigue and excessive speed. Speed can lead to a rollover incident, which is among the most frequently seen truck accidents. A brake malfunction can cause a truck to jack-knife or result in a runaway truck. Other equipment failures, such as a tire blow out, and overloaded cargo can also cause deadly mishaps.