Causes of Trucking Accidents
To pursue damages after a truck crash, the first step is to determine what happened and who is responsible. Dallas-Fort Worth based Berenson Injury Law delves deep to get to the root of the cause. An attorney with more than 35 years of experience and Texas Board Certification in personal injury trial law, Fort Worth truck accident lawyer Bill Berenson has the determination, skills and resources to conduct a comprehensive investigation.
Our auto crash attorney is able to build a strong case backed by solid evidence. We also anticipate the trucking company’s arguments that the driver is solely at fault or that you are to blame. We are prepared to counter these defense tactics with evidence as to the true cause of the crash.Trucking Corporation Responsible for Vehicle and Drivers
Immediately following a tractor-trailer crash, the trucking corporation sends its lawyers to mitigate its liability. However, in most cases the trucking company bears some or all fault for the accident, including liability for:
- Employer/ employee relationship under a theory of vicarious liability
- Hiring of employees with unsafe driving records and history of accidents
- Inadequate supervision of its employees
- Corporate polices that tolerate or encourage unsafe driving practices
- Manipulation of logbooks to cover up hours of service violations
- Poorly maintained tractor-trailers
- Overloaded or unbalanced loads that can shift during transit
- Improper transport of hazardous materials
Driver error was a factor in about one-third of fatal tractor-trailer accidents. Both the driver and the corporation should be held responsible for these common causes of commercial vehicle crashes:
- Tired driving
Hours of service (HOS) regulations limit the number of hours a truck driver can work and drive during a shift and the workweek. The HOS laws also mandate time off and rest breaks. The driver must maintain a logbook to prove compliance. These laws are in place to prevent the very dangerous practice of driving while tired.
- Texting while driving
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) forbids texting while driving. The anti-texting laws also ban emailing, instant messaging, videotaping, surfing the Internet, and using Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or other social media sites while operating an 18-wheeler. A truck accident lawyer can help Fort Worth residents and others try to hold a trucker accountable for a violation of these laws.
- Phone use while driving
Commercial drivers are permitted to use a hands-free device only and cannot move from a seated, seat belted position or press more than one button to dial, answer or hang up the phone. Despite these regulations, distracted driving is a leading cause of big-rig crashes.
Speeding is the leading factor in tractor-trailer crashes. An 18-wheeler takes longer to stop because of its weight and excessive speed increases the necessary braking time. The driver has a responsibility to adapt speed to the road conditions, such as the seasonal icy and rainy weather of North Texas.
- Reckless driving conduct
Inexperienced and careless drivers might engage in such dangerous driving behavior as tailgating, taking turns too quickly, overcorrecting and switching lanes without checking for cars. These errors can cause a tractor-trailer to rollover or jackknife or to cut off another driver.
Call Berenson Injury Law at 817-885-8000 to schedule a free case evaluation. Our Dallas-Fort Worth law firm handles your claim on contingency, so you do not pay lawyers’ fees until we recover damages. Consulting a Fort Worth truck accident attorney is an important first step to take in asserting your rights.