Of the many road accidents that happen in North Carolina, those involving commercial trucks are a controversial topic of concern. The vehicles come sizes much larger than passenger cars; hence, they cause significant injuries and fatalities at a higher rate than standard car accidents. If you are injured or lose a loved one in a truck accident, you should get in touch with Kannapolis truck accident lawyer for legal help and advice.
Commercial trucks accident often involve multiple smaller cars, and this brings in various insurance providers into a claim case. That is why these cases are tough to handle. Still, we at Harman Law firm have car accident lawyers in Kannapolis who are experienced in truck accidents and pursuing the maximum compensation for injuries and damages for victims.
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Commercial Truck Accident Figures In North Carolina
North Carolina stats between 2010 and 2017 show that accidents involving large trucks went up by 41% (figures rose from 104 to 147), with the reported fatalities increasing from 117 to 164 within the same period. Accidents involving tractor-trailers and semi-trucks that happened in 2017 totaled to 4,567, accounting for the largest number of commercial truck collisions in North Carolina.
Data collected between 2011 and 2015 showed that people that were victims of large truck crashes stood at 137,000. 43% of these were the trucks, while 57% of the others involved in the accident were drivers or passengers in other types of vehicles. Of the many injured, 82% sustain severe injuries, while 85% are killed.
What Should You Do After A Truck Accident?
Taking the right steps after being involved in a truck accident can have a significant impact on your case’s outcome. Keep in mind that your injuries be a health risk and are worth being checked immediately after the accident. Moreover, note that your rights have been violated, and you are eligible to seek justice. That is why you should consult with an experienced truck accident lawyer in Kannapolis, NC. Some of the things you should do to ensure your rights and interests are protected include:
- Avoid leaving the scene too early lest you are accused of a hit-and-run accident.
- Get yourself, and others if necessary, out of harm’s way.
- Inform the police of the incident and call for medical help even if you do not have severe injuries.
- Take photographs of the accident.
- Do not talk to insurance providers and their adjusters without an attorney present.
- Be cautious of what you say when at the scene. Most importantly, never apologize or admit fault for the accident.
- Collect as much information as you can that will be relevant in your claim case; this will include the drivers, passengers, and witnesses.
What Laws Govern Truck Accident Liability?
North Carolina has stringent rules regarding commercial truck vehicles that the drivers and trucking companies must follow. The laws are in place to protect the safety of road users by ensuring that drivers and companies pay for any injuries and deaths that their trucks cause due to their negligence.
The guidelines for commercial trucking vehicles issued under the North Carolina Governors’ Highway Safety Program that trucking companies must abide by include:
- A minimum mandatory coverage of $50,000 and $750,000 for personal injury and property damage insurance covers, respectively.
- Adhering to weight and load restrictions
- Taking vehicles for mandatory inspections
- Hiring drivers with the required qualification
Commercial truck drivers are required to adhere to the following rules:
- Licensing – The driver must have a Commercial Driver’s License with an endorsement for the specific vehicle class.
- Medical Check – Taking biannual health tests for any medical issues that might pose a safety risk.
- Age – The minimum age for a driver to hold a CDL in North Carolina is 18 years and 21 years for regional operations.
- Impaired Driving – A driver can be charged with a DWI if the blood alcohol level is .04 or higher.
- Substance Testing – Drivers must submit to alcohol and drug testing.
- Work & Rest Hours – The acceptable hours of driving within North Carolina are 11 hours after 10 hours off duty.
How Will A Lawyer Help A Truck Accident Claim?
Experience and professionalism are the two leading things to consider when looking for a Kannapolis truck accident lawyer to guide you through the steps to take when pursuing compensation for injuries and damages you sustained in the collision.
We shall assign a team of experts in law among other areas to help investigate your case and determine who is at fault, and the insurers that should provide compensation. It is a strategy we take to ensure you receive the maximum compensation that will cover your pain, losses, and suffering.
The personal injury lawyers in Kannapolis handling your case will calculate the monetary impact of your damages while considering your current and future medical expenses, lost income, the capacity to earn, damages to your car, and the pain and anguish attributed to the accident.
After we determine the sum to request as compensation, we shall submit it to the insurance providers and will oversee any negotiations regarding the full settlement on your behalf. Our attorneys will review any offers you get and give you their perspective after comparing it to your losses and suffering. The matter could proceed to court if we fail to reach an agreement.
What Types Of Compensation Can I Expect?
We can help you recover different kinds of compensation after being involved in a truck accident; this can include the following:
- Medical Expenses: Taking into consideration past and future medical bills, including treatment, transportation costs to and from the hospital, therapy, rehab, and any changes needed in your home or car to suit your health needs associated with the injuries.
- Pain And Suffering: The anguish you endured because of the injuries and losses sustained after the accident.
- Property Damage: The costs of fixing or replacing your vehicle
- Emotional Distress: Emotional damage like depression, PTSD, and anxiety attributed to the accident.
- Lost Enjoyment Of Life: Your inability to live life normally and enjoy what you love doing.
- Punitive Damages: A form of punishment that can deter other drivers that engage in such wrongful conduct.
How Much is My Truck Accident Claim Worth?
While no compensation can take away the physical, mental, and emotional anguish caused by the injuries, it can serve as a resource for when you and your family need help with medical care and other monetary needs. Therefore, it will be the financial refuge you need to regain some sense of normalcy in life.
Your chances of getting the compensation your rightly deserve are better if you enlist the services of an experienced truck accident lawyer. The attorney will help determine the value damages and losses and help you take the right steps towards getting full compensation. You also will receive expert guidance and advice on what you should do to ensure you get a favorable outcome in your claim case.
When Should I File A Truck Accident Claim In NC?
In North Carolina, victims of a truck accident have three years from the date of the incident to file their claims, or from the time they know they have legal grounds to sue the party at faulty. However, you cannot file a claim ten years after the accident happened, even if that is when you find out that you could have sued those responsible.
Therefore, you should act fast, taking the right measures, which include consulting an experienced attorney that will guide and advise you accordingly. We at Harman Law firm are here to assist you in seeking justice for your injuries and losses. We shall make sure that you file the claim within the stipulated period.
How Will You Determine Fault In A Truck Accident?
As a contributory negligence state, North Carolina laws demand that the accuser prove fault. That means any mistake in the matter, such as not indicating before taking a turn, thus playing a part in the crash, can see you fail to get compensated.
As a result, you must show that the other driver is responsible for the accident. Subsequently, you should defend yourself against claims they make stating you had a hand in the collision.
Can My Attorney Prove The Truck Driver Was Reckless?
Finding blame is crucial in any claim case. Your lawyer will search for any elements that prove negligence on the part of the truck driver or the trucking company. That means they failed to uphold their duty of care, a breach that results in the accident that caused the injuries and damages you sustained.
In most cases, blame or liability is demonstrated with evidence like police reports, witness statements, driver’s statements, and photos of the scene. Any breached traffic laws that are relevant to the crash will also be considered.
For instance, the truck driver and the trucking company are subject to regulations that they must follow. Violation of any of these rules and requirements might be used as proof of their negligence that led to the accident.
Who Can Be Held Liable In Truck Accidents?
Our legal experts will investigate the roles that the following playing in the matter to determine who shall shoulder the blame:
Truck driver: Determine if they own the truck and whether they violated traffic rules, such as driving while intoxicated.
If they hired qualified drivers, are pressuring them to work long hours without adequate resting time, and if they provide inadequate training to their truck drivers.
If they incorrectly loaded cargo, overloaded, or failed to secure it for transit.
Repair And Maintenance Companies
Failure to inspect, service, and maintain the truck, leading to a mechanical failure that resulted in an accident.
If the truck had defects that contributed to the collision, then the manufacturer, distributors, or seller of the truck or its parts will be at fault.
When unsafe road conditions are attributed to the accident.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
Some of the prevalent causes of accidents in North Carolina that involve large trucks include:
- Driver error, recklessness, or negligence, which can include failure to yield and driving while intoxicated.
- Driver fatigue because of spending long hours behind the wheel and ignoring the legal work-hour limits for truck drivers.
- Speeding because of a rush to meet unrealistic deadlines set by the employer or in a bid to meet other expectations.
- Unsecure or imbalanced cargo that causes it to shift rapidly when on transit, causing the truck to lose control.
- Hiring unqualified drivers or offering inadequate training.
- Inadequate or improper maintenance of the company’s vehicles, causing them to have mechanical issues that result in accidents.
Call a Truck Accident Lawyer in Kannapolis Today!
At Harman Law, we have experienced lawyers that can help you navigate the various hurdles you will encounter when seeking justice for your injuries after a truck accident. Call our Kannapolis injury law firm today to speak with an experienced Kannapolis truck accident lawyer and schedule your free consultation. We can make plans to meet with you at a place of your convenience in North Carolina.
We always offer our legal expertise to our clients while having their best interests at heart. When you enlist our services, we guarantee to be committed to making sure that you get a favorable result. We shall work hard to build a strong case for pursuing compensation and ensuring that your rights are protected.
We provide our expertise and legal service for such cases on a contingency fee basis. Therefore, take advantage of our legal counsel and ensure that you take the right steps towards seeking justice and getting the compensation you rightly deserve.