Trucking companies and the trucking industry continually work to re-direct responsibility for the accidents to the drivers of other vehicles via research and statistical studies. This information can come up in legal actions associated with any accident. Click here to learn more about the causes and types of truck accident collisions.
In looking for an accident attorney, ensure that attorney has the resources and can pursue the claim for the extended period of time required to see your case through.With our more than 40 years in practice, Jacoby & Meyers has demonstrated success in beating these tactics.
- Take action without delay. Your quick action after an accident can–in the long run–prevent truck companies and their lawyers from using these industry statistics and research against you.
- Act immediately. The truck owner and its SWAT team will be on the job as soon as the accident is reported. However, you are more likely to be confused or injured. In those situations, most of us delay making a decision if we can. An accident requires immediate action to protect your interests and your potential to recover the full value of the damages you experience!
- Hire a resourceful accident attorney in California or your state immediately. If you quickly hire a lawyer in California like Jacoby & Meyers or the state where you accident happened, you have the best chance of preserving evidence, documenting what happened and successfully pursuing your claim in the accident.
- Preserve evidence. Secure your car and other vehicles in the accident. They are evidence. Be sure they are salvaged so that experts hired by your lawyer can study them for proof of what happened in the accident.
- Secure truck and driver data. Truck drivers are required to maintain driving logs. The company that owns the truck and hires the driver has computer records about the driver and about each truck, its maintenance record and other details. Trucks also carry on-board black boxes.These records can be critical to understanding what happened in an accident and substantiating your claim. They must be secured before they can be lost or destroyed.Jacoby & Meyers and their accident reconstruction experts will use them to understand how the accident happened and who was responsible.Jacoby & Meyers will also make sure these vital pieces of evidence remain available.
- Paying for truck accident litigation. Paying for the experts and the other resources necessary to pursue an accident claim can be time consuming and expensive.
- Truck companies and government agencies have deep pockets and time on their side. Truck companies will also rigorously defend themselves from injury claims and property losses.
In some cases, your attorney may have to hire a number of technical experts to identify who had responsibility for your accident and to prove it to a judge and jury. They also have to prove that you are entitled to recover damages.
If there have been serious or catastrophic injuries or deaths in the accident, medical experts are also required to document the extent of the injuries and the care required.
Potential Difficulties and Pitfalls to the Success of your Claim
Understanding the potential difficulties of this type of case. As with any industry, some companies “push the envelope” and, directly or indirectly, follow marginal, illegal or dangerous practices. Here are several examples of those dangerous practices:
- Inaccurate or falsified records. Federal law limits how long a driver can be behind the wheel and how long he or she has to rest after a shift.
- Some companies directly or indirectly force their drivers to falsify the logs documenting how long they have been driving. Driver fatigue is one of the most common causes of truck crashes, so violating the law and falsifying driving records can be a significant factor when the trucker has an accident.
- The government reviews driver logs to assure compliance with rules about driving time, but companies have techniques for hiding this data.
- Companies may also encourage drivers to falsify their driving records indirectly through hidden messages in driver manuals or training materials.
- Support services may also collude in falsifying driving records. For example, fueling stations may fail to print the time of a gas purchase on a receipt.
- An experienced accident attorney like Jacoby & Meyers can determine when driver logs have been falsified and other common scams that cover for drivers who may be fatigued because they are driving too many hours.
- Company policies documented but not followed. Companies sometimes ignore issues like substance abuse or speeding, even though the company rules say that those behaviors are grounds for termination. The right attorneys can identify flaws in company policies and procedures, and will also independently verify the driver’s driving record.
- Multiple responsibilities for truck maintenance and care. In accidents caused by equipment failure, the source of the problem can be difficult to track down. The problem could originate with the manufacturer, with shoddy repairs or because of improper maintenance.
- Investigators and experts have the best chance of pinning down the real cause of the failure and identifying who was responsible.