Merchandise and package delivery trucks are everywhere these days. Buying products online has been an uprising trend over the last years and it’s expected to continue. Getting into an accident with one of these large trucks carrying heavy merchandise is just as likely as getting into an accident with a regular car, however, the effects are normally much more devastating. Popular companies that perform these type of services include UPS, FedEx and DHL. Drivers that operate on these trucks are often under a lot of pressure to deliver the goods on time. As a result, safety measures are often overlooked, and negligent actions occur, which may lead to a catastrophic accident. Many accidents also involve rental trucks, like those provided by the company U-Haul because the average driver does not have the necessary training or experience in operating these types of trucks. Sometimes the driver may not be at fault, at least not completely, instead, the company could be held liable in the event of an accident. However, is it highly unlikely that FedEx, U-haul, or similar companies will step up and accept liability for the accident.
If you have suffered injuries in a truck accident in Sacramento County and someone else was at fault, O'Brien & Zehnder Law Firm can help you pursue compensation for your injuries. We will help you through your recovery process, both mentally and legally. Once we know your case details we will be able to advise you on the best course of action for your situation.
Common Truck Accident Causes
A lot of factors that cause regular car accidents such as speeding, distracted driving, not following traffic rules, also cause truck accidents. These situations are also much more dangerous, as these large vehicles are much harder to maneuver and stop in order to avoid unforeseen dangers. Other truck-specific crash causes include:
- Lack of training. Operating a large truck is different than your regular, small car, as such, extensive training is required. This is especially important in the case of a rental truck accident.
- Tight schedule. Drivers often find themselves having to operate in a dangerous manner which includes speeding and not getting enough rest because of the need to fit an impossible schedule
- Malfunction. Things like brake defects, worn tires, non-functional headlights, and taillights. Regular maintenance on trucks should be a priority.
- Truck not being loaded properly. The merchandise needs to be stacked and secured in a certain way inside a truck in order to avoid weight unbalancing.
Types of Truck Accident Injuries
Truck accidents usually result in some form of injury, sometimes they’re mild and superficial, but often the victims barely escape alive, and when they do, their injuries do not allow them to live a normal life. In these tragic circumstances, it is essential to receive proper compensation from the responsible party.
Common injuries include:
- Spine injuries. These can be minor and only result in a temporary pain, or they can be more severe and require surgery and extensive treatment. Due to the nature of this injury, it can have long-term repercussions and keep the sufferer in an inability to work for a long time which results in a loss of wages.
- Broken bones. Trauma can easily fracture or break a bone and these are usually serious injuries that require surgery and a long recovery period.
- Brain injuries. Brain injuries are especially dangerous as they are very difficult to treat and they often put the victim in a permanent, life-altering condition. If the sufferer manages to survive a brain injury, it often happens that they can no longer conduct regular day-by-day activities and need a permanent caregiver to help them with these tasks.
- Burns. A collision with a large truck presents a higher risk of fuel tanks exploding which can result in extremely painful, severe burn injuries.
- Lacerations. Shattered glass and body collision with different objects inside a vehicle can cause deep cuts and wounds that can put the victim’s life in danger or, best case scenario, cause permanent scars.
- Seatbelt injuries. Even though a seatbelt’s purpose is to keep the passenger restrained in the case of an accident in order to avoid more severe damage, it can also cause injuries in the process.
- Wrongful death. A truck accident can easily result in someone’s death and the victim is often in the smaller car.
What to Do when Involved in a Truck Accident
Medical assistance should be your first priority as a fast intervention reduces the risk of complications and might save your life. You need to keep in mind that big corporations like FedEx and U-Haul have dealt with personal injury lawsuits and they are well versed in defending against them. They are ready to take advantage of any mistake you might do, so it is important to know your rights and be aware that some of your actions could put your future case in jeopardy.
- Do not give any statements regarding the accident. You might accidentally give information that can be used against you in a potential lawsuit minimizing your chances of getting rightful compensation.
- Do not accept money or sign any documents you might be presented with. The company might try and offer to pay for your hospitalization costs or a monetary compensation. It is important to wait until the aftermath of your accident is clear and you’re fully aware of everything it implies. If you’re rushing a settlement you might end up with a compensation that does not reflect your injuries and losses.
- Contact a skilled personal injury attorney with experience in truck accidents. Big corporations are usually experienced in these types of situations and they usually have skilled attorneys handling the defense, however, this should not discourage you from pursuing what’s rightfully yours, as they are not untouchable.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Law Firm
O'Brien & Zehnder Law Firm is a law firm with years of experience in all areas of personal injury law, from car accidents to product liability and we also handle wrongful death claims. If you have been a victim of a truck accident and you suffered injuries due to someone else’s negligence, we can help you. We don’t think it’s right for you to support the consequences of someone else’s careless acts and we want to make sure that the responsible party is held liable for their actions and, at the same time, that you can continue living your life as close to normal as possible after the incident. Call one of our offices in Elk Grove or Sacramento and schedule a free consultation.