Snellings Law PLLC Attorneys are
Devoted Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyers
Commercial Vehicle Accidents are Complex - Gain Clarity with snellings law
Texas law defines commercial vehicles as motor vehicles that operate on the road for business, instead of personal reasons. Commercial vehicles will transport either products or passengers. As you probably know, commercial vehicles are everywhere! You see plenty on your morning commute: pest control trucks, lawn care trucks, Ubers, Lyfts, Amazon trucks – the list is endless.
When a commercial vehicle causes a wreck, matters get complicated. These cases are hard to navigate due to: the multiple entities involved, insurance policies and standards, liability scenarios, and more. In addition, Texas laws have passed to make it more difficult to hold companies of commercial vehicles responsible when they cause a crash.
Sometimes it is best to get the help of a commercial vehicle accident lawyer to decide how to successfully move forward in your commercial vehicle accident claim. Let us make things as clear as possible, so you know what you are dealing with in your commercial vehicle accident claim.
Who might be responsible for a commercial vehicle crash?
In a crash between two regular automobiles, it’s usually easier to pinpoint the at-fault party that caused the crash. With commercial vehicles, it’s not so easy. You might be dealing with multiple defendants, insurance companies, and liability theories, all of which take specific expertise in navigating.
This may also require the assistance of a commercial vehicle accident lawyer. With the commercial vehicle that caused the crash, there are many scenarios for at-fault parties. Some possibilities include the driver, the drivers employer, service companies, or the manufacturing company that made the truck.
Liability complications are a huge reason why consulting a commercial vehicle accident lawyer could be beneficial when starting a commercial vehicle accident claim.
Commercial Service Truck Drivers
With any commercial vehicle, there are safety standards that commercial service truck drivers must follow. Federal regulations and state laws require that commercial vehicle drivers have certain qualifications, get necessary amounts of rest, and keep logs of their time on and off duty. Therefore, it is in the driver’s best interest to follow these rules because when they don’t, they can suffer consequences with their job and potentially with the law.
Most commercial service truck drivers are great drivers. However, the good drivers aren’t the ones you need to watch out for. The commercial vehicle drivers that don’t follow the rules are the people that create trouble and danger for everyone else.
Drivers of certain types of commercial vehicles are required to keep logs of their on- and off-duty activity. Unfortunately, some drivers alter their logs and drive further and longer than they are legally allowed. To safely operate a large, commercial vehicle, drivers need to be rested and alert.
A commercial vehicle accident attorney can help determine the extent of the driver’s liability in a commercial vehicle accident case. Commercial vehicle accident attorneys have the resources to investigate into the driver’s behavior and actions at work. It is important to consult with a commercial vehicle accident lawyer quickly after a crash so that they have time to gather evidence.
The "Bad Eggs"
Drowsiness isn’t the only cause of commercial truck wrecks. Distracted driving or driving under the influence can also cause crashes. It’s important to drive defensively around commercial service trucks and other large commercial vehicles because you never know if the driver is one of the “bag eggs.”
It’s important to hold the bad eggs accountable so that fewer commercial vehicle accidents happen. An experienced commercial vehicle accident attorney can help hold reckless commercial vehicle drivers accountable, guide you through your claim, and help you heal from the accident.
Sometimes, the driver’s company may play a part in a crash. If they didn’t do proper screening or training when hiring the driver or failed to properly supervise them, then they could be faulted for letting an unqualified, poorly trained driver operate a commercial service truck on the road.
Remember how we mentioned that some commercial vehicle drivers will alter logs and drive further and longer than they should? One of the reasons they might do so is pressure from their employer to make more stops or cut delivery times. If that is the case, then the employer might have some fault in causing a wreck.
If the driver’s company owns the vehicle, the employer is also in charge of making sure the vehicle is safe to drive. That means ensuring proper maintenance is kept up on the service truck. If they fail to do so and the crash is caused by a maintenance issue, fault could come back on the employer.
It takes a bit more digging to determine if the employer could be liable. A commercial vehicle accident lawyer will investigate and determine if the employer is at fault. It will be very difficult to even find out if an employer played a role in the crash without consulting a commercial vehicle accident attorney.
Sometimes, the problem starts with the source. Issues with tires, parts, or the truck itself can cause wrecks, similar to regular car accidents. The manufacturers of these parts are responsible for making them correctly so that they operate safely. If a wreck is caused because a part of the truck malfunctions, the manufacturer could be held liable. Once again, going after the manufacturing company can be difficult, but an experience commercial vehicle accident lawyer can help.
Commercial Service Trucks and Insurance
Commercial vehicles usually have larger insurance policies as many of them are required by law. Additionally, when larger vehicles are involved in crashes, injuries tend to be more severe. While commercial vehicle accidents take a huge toll physically, they also seriously impact victims and their family members emotionally and mentally.
First and foremost, it’s important to see a doctor as soon as possible if you are involved in a wreck—even if you think you’re not hurt. Typically, commercial vehicle accidents yield more complex injuries, leading to more extensive medical treatments. Injuries like TBIs (traumatic brain injuries) might not show symptoms immediately, but the long-term effects can be serious.
As commercial vehicle accident lawyers, we’ve seen the damage that commercial vehicle accidents can do to victims. Insurance adjusters will likely brush the emotional and psychological toll of these accidents under the rug. A commercial vehicle accident lawyer can help fight to help you receive a fair settlement for these damages so you can begin healing.
Dealing with Insurance Adjusters
While your injuries may diminish the quality of your life, the at-fault’s insurance adjusters will paint the story in a different light. The insurance adjusters will undermine the impact of the crash on your life, with the goal of minimizing their responsibility to you.
Commercial vehicle insurance adjusters are typically savvier than regular automobile insurance adjusters. Commercial adjusters require more training and experience, and tend to be more sophisticated. To effectively defend against slippery adjusters, you need a skilled and experienced commercial vehicle accident attorney. With the right representation, you will blow by insurance adjuster’s traps, ensure the right evidence is collected, and the correct experts are involved.
Bus accidents share many of the same complexities as well. There are many laws in place that protect government-regulated and owned buses such as city and school buses. Charter buses, church buses, party buses, and other commercially owned buses are not as heavily protected.
Many bus crashes are caused by driver fatigue and distracted driving, but maintenance or manufacturing issues could also be to blame. Buses are so large that a lot of damage can come from a crash involving one of these vehicles. You should see a doctor immediately if you’ve been involved in a bus crash. You should also consider scheduling a call with an experienced bus attorney that can help you navigate the complexities of your case.
Wrongful Death in Commercial Vehicle Cases
Sometimes, crashes with commercial vehicles lead to the worst outcome – death. No one should have to deal with losing a loved one due to someone else’s negligence. Sadly, crashes leading to a wrongful death claim are too common in Texas. Oftentimes in wrongful death cases, families are so engulfed in grief that dealing with the legal aspects of the case just adds to their stresses.
We know that grief can be debilitating, and at Snellings Law, we take wrongful death cases extremely seriously. Our team of experienced commercial vehicle accident attorneys can help you navigate your case so you can focus on grieving with your family.
How do I prevent a commercial vehicle wreck?
To minimize the chance of getting in a wreck with a commercial service truck, make sure to drive defensively. Make sure the driver can see you when you’re passing them and never pull out in front of or whip around a commercial vehicle.
As you can see, commercial service truck wrecks can get complicated. As our area grows, construction and highway traffic increase, causing a higher likelihood of injury from commercial vehicles. If you are injured in a commercial vehicle crash, keep in mind that time is of the essence. With big companies and big vehicles come bigger risks to them.
The at-fault’s insurance company is going to do whatever it can to minimize your claim from the outset. This can include finding ways to dispute liability as well as downplaying your injuries. You don’t want the investigation to be solely in the hands of the at-fault insurance company.
Therefore, it is important to schedule an appointment with a commercial vehicle accident attorney soon after the wreck.
Stop Stressing. Start Recovering
After a wreck, it’s normal to feel anxious and stressed out. Pursuing a claim is sometimes the last thing on your mind when you have physical and mental injuries to recover from.
At Snellings Law, our team of commercial vehicle accident attorneys aggressively represent our clients that are victims of commercial vehicle crashes. We know the complexities that come with these cases specifically, and we investigate thoroughly to hold all responsible parties accountable.
After a wreck, your focus should be on healing. As commercial vehicle accident attorneys we take the stress of navigating the case out of your hands so you can do just that.
We offer free strategy sessions to discuss your case, so give us a call if you’ve been injured or lost a loved one at the hands of an 18-wheeler, bus, tractor-trailer, rock hauler, dump truck, cement truck, or another commercial vehicle.
Take the first step towards recovery and schedule a free strategy session with one of our commercial vehicle accident lawyers today.
Free Strategy Session Reveals How To Avoid the Traps Insurance Companies Set for Victims to Destroy Claims.
How it works:
- Call us now or give us your basic information in the Free Strategy Session box
- If your case is something we cannot help you with, we will do our best to get you the information of someone who can.
- If we can potentially help you, we will schedule a Free Strategy Session
There is zero obligation. We want all injury victims to understand their rights and the process.
After your Free Strategy Session, you will understand where insurance companies can set traps for you and what needs to be done to avoid these traps. You will also understand the personal injury process as well as how we can help, or if you need the help of an attorney. The strategy session typically will have one of three outcomes. You:
- Decide to move forward with our law firm.
- Decide to think about it, and we will be available to answer your questions.
- Say, “I’ve got this,” and decide you do not need an attorney.
Again, there is zero obligation and you will be informed and understand your rights and the process. We want to arm you with knowledge to avoid the traps insurance companies set to harm your claim.