New York Truck Accident Attorneys Represent Victims of All Types of Crashes
Trucking accident attorneys in New York, like the ones at Leeds Brown, see first-hand the devastation that can occur following a crash with an 18-wheeler or other “big rig.” Millions of trucks drive on our national highways, state expressways and local roads every year, carrying important goods and providing needed services. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), in 2014 there were well over 10 million trucks registered.
Unfortunately, there are also hundreds of thousands of accidents involving trucks each year. According to the FMCSA, the agency that oversees and regulates the trucking industry, from 2013-2014 nearly 350,000 trucks were involved in accidents causing property damage only. During the same year, the number of large trucks (over 10,000 pounds) involved in crashes with injuries increased by 21 percent, from 73,000 to 88,000. The number of large trucks in crashes resulting in a fatality was over 3,700. Those crashes caused almost 4,000 deaths.
After a NY accident, you may wish to speak with someone at Leeds Brown. Our experienced personal injury attorneys can help you understand your rights, preserve records and build your case following an accident.
Our Lawyers Hold Negligent Parties Responsible for NY Trucking Injuries
If you are an injured pedestrian, driver or car passenger, you may be able to file a civil lawsuit against the trucking company, driver or any other party that may have been negligent and at fault for your accident. If you are the injured driver of a truck, your employer or the truck manufacturer may be to blame for the crash. If the accident resulted in a fatality, the victim’s family members may be entitled to file a wrongful death claim. Personal injury attorneys can help determine who breached a duty of care, acted negligently, and is, therefore, responsible for paying for your damages.
New York personal injury lawyers at Leeds Brown have decades of proven success navigating claims with large insurance companies, and obtaining fair and substantial settlements for clients. We can negotiate on your behalf and aggressively represent your interests. Of course, if together we determine that going to trial is the best way to secure the outcome you deserve, Leeds Brown truck accident attorneys will vigorously pursue a successful monetary award. You may be able to recover medical costs, pain and suffering, lost wages and more.
Trucking Jackknife Accidents Cause Injuries Throughout New York
One of the more common types of large truck accidents occurs when a truck “jackknifes.” A jackknife happens when the cab of a truck rotates away from the trailer portion causing the truck become immobile and dangerous. The trailer can hit a vehicle next to it, rollover or even bend into oncoming traffic. Jack-knifing accidents cause severe injuries, property damage and emotional trauma to the drivers and innocent passengers on the road. Fatalities from these types of incidents are not unusual. What causes a tractor-trailer to jackknife, rollover or otherwise crash? Some common factors are:
Driving Over the Posted Speed Limit: The speed limits for trucks are often different than the limits for cars, and for good reason. Driving over the posted limit decreases the driver’s reaction time making it more difficult to respond to hazardous conditions and the actions of other drivers on the road. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, loaded tractor trailers need 20-40 percent more space to stop than cars. Imagine how much more space a speeding truck would need.
Overloading Cargo: Overloading cargo may create instability making a truck more inclined to have a rollover accident or jackknife due to an equipment malfunction.
Aggressively or Recklessly Driving: Aggressively or recklessly driving a large tractor-trailer or other large truck is extremely dangerous given the size and weight of most rigs. The average passenger car weighs approximately 4,000 pounds. A truck can weigh from 10,000 to 80,000 pounds. Any accident involving aggressive driving of a truck is likely going to result in significant, life-altering injuries and a substantial monetary award for the victim.
Driving While Under the Influence of Drugs or Alcohol: Driving under the influence of alcohol and illegal drugs is against the law and can severely impact a driver’s ability to operate a truck safely. Driving under the influence of prescription drugs may also impair a truck driver’s judgment.
Ignoring Important Traffic Signs: Ignoring any traffic sign can create dangerous driving situations. Ignoring “one-way” signs may cause head-on collisions. Ignoring “no trucks on Parkway” signs can result in a tractor trailer being stuck under a low bridge causing high-speed rear-end crashes in addition to jackknife issues.
Negligent Maintenance: When a truck driver or trucking company fails to maintain equipment and perform routine inspections, as mandated, accidents can result. Equipment may deteriorate or break over time, and if problems go unnoticed or unchecked, the results can be devastating.
Poor Driving Conditions: Snow, ice, road construction, fog or rain may cause large trucks and trailer rigs to slide out of control, careening off of embankments or into other vehicles.
Driving While Fatigued: Tired truck drivers often drive excessively long hours, sometimes in violation of federal motor carrier regulations. Drowsiness and fatigue can cause a driver to nod-off. Doing so even for a second while driving a huge rig at high speed can result in a terrible accident with fatal injuries.
Brake Failure: Brakes can malfunction if not inspected regularly or can be defective. Overloading and speeding can also make it impossible to slow down or bring a tractor trailer to a safe stop.
Driving with Defective or Damaged Equipment: A truck with defective or damaged equipment may result in a jackknife or rollover accident. For example, a tire blowout often causes a truck to rollover from instability. Defective brakes may have the same result. Attorneys in New York who specialize in truck accidents know how to investigate and prove cases involving defective equipment.
Driving Without Proper Experience or Training: When a commercial trucking company does not take the time to train and educate drivers about hazards, safety and regulations, it puts the entire population of drivers at risk for a dangerous collision.
Trucking Accidents in NY: Time Limits and Damages
If you have injuries from a truck accident, chances are they are quite severe. The sheer size of most trucks means that anyone involved in a tractor trailer collision is going to the hospital for treatment. Often, injuries in truck crashes include:
- Broken bones
- Partial or total paralysis
- Spinal cord injuries
- Limb amputation
- Brain injuries
Truck accident injuries often require weeks, months or years of medical treatment. Surgeries, physical therapy, medications and medical devices are expensive and may not all be covered by insurance. Truck accident victims often cannot return to work for long periods of time as they recover. Of course, the stress and anxiety caused by accidents can make it difficult to return to any normal daily activities.
By filing a claim and proving that someone’s negligence or recklessness was the cause of your injuries, you may be able to recover a significant amount of monetary compensation. Such an award can include your medical bills, lost income and pain, and suffering.
The statute of limitation sets a period during which you must file your claim to preserve your rights to recover monetary damages. We have no way of knowing how much time you have left until we hear the facts of your accident so get in touch with Leeds Brown today.
Recovering from a trucking accident is not easy. It takes time and hard work to recover from physical, emotional and financial injuries. Let the lawyers at Leeds Brown help you by working with you to secure fair and just monetary compensation from the party or parties responsible for your suffering.
There is a time limit called a “statute of limitations” in which to file cases. We cannot know how much time you have left until we hear the facts of yours. Time may be of the essence so don’t wait – call today.
Leeds Brown personal injury attorneys work around the clock for New York accident victims and are here to take your call 24/7. Call 1-800-585-4658 today for a free consultation.