Houston Truck Accident Attorney
Most people never think they will be injured in an accident caused by the negligent actions of a truck driver or trucking company. While we have all likely had thoughts such as, “I hope it is safe to drive near this tractor-trailer,” we hope an accident never occurs. Unfortunately, 18-Wheeler accidents do happen, and the team at Padilla & Rodriguez, LLP is dedicated to helping victims recover the compensation they deserve. Our 18-wheeler accident attorneys will investigate every aspect of your case in order to secure the compensation you deserve.
Why Choose Padilla & Rodriguez, LLP For Your Case?
After sustaining a serious injury in an 18-wheeler accident, you need assistance from a team with vast experience handling these cases. Padilla & Rodriguez, LLP Is ready to get to work on your behalf.
- We have more than 70 years of combined legal experience helping clients who have been seriously injured in serious incidents such as commercial truck accidents.
- We have the resources at our disposal to handle significant cases and to go up against major insurance carriers and trucking companies.
- We take all Houston 18-wheeler accident cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that we do not charge any upfront or out-of-pocket costs. Our clients only pay legal fees after we secure the compensation they deserve through a jury verdict or settlement.
How Will An Attorney Help This Case?
Truck accident cases can become complicated because they usually involve more than one potentially liable party. In many cases, injury victims are left going up against major trucking companies and their insurance carriers. A skilled Houston truck accident lawyer will have the resources and legal experience necessary to:
- Obtain all evidence necessary to prove liability in the incident. This includes any video or photographic evidence of the incident, statements from eyewitnesses, police reports, “black box” data, truck maintenance records, hours of service logs, and more.
- Work with trusted medical professionals who can evaluate a client’s injuries and help assess their total losses.
- Negotiate with all parties involved in order to secure a fair settlement on behalf of the client or prepare the case for trial if necessary to secure full compensation.
How Often Do These Accidents Occur?
According to data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), the agency responsible for regulating most commercial truckers and trucking companies, there were around 148,000 total injuries during the latest reporting year of data available. We also know that large truck crashes resulted in 4,761 total fatalities across the country during that same reporting year. Data From the Texas Department of Transportation shows that there were 465 fatal semi-truck crashes across the state of Texas during that year.
Large truck collisions are common on surface roads, highways, and freeways. Driver fatigue, overwork, inattention, following too closely and carelessness can lead to collisions. Because of the huge weight and size disparity between 18-Wheelers, Tractor-Trailers, and other Heavy Trucks and the average automobile, these types of collisions often result in serious injuries and sometimes death.
In large truck collisions, it is important to secure the vehicle so as to examine the brakes and download the information from the data recorder, or “black box.” Driver fatigue can sometimes be supported by the drivers’ logs. Large truck drivers are subject to strict limits on hours of service. Qualcomm data and other GPS based systems for long-distance or “over the road” drivers can sometimes prove inconsistencies in the drivers’ logs. Unfortunately, professional drivers often have strict deadlines or “per the load” or “per mile” pay, all of which can encourage them to speed and cut corners.
Common scenarios involve speeding, wide right turns, lane drift, and failing to “manage the space” around the large truck, such as following too closely or turning when unsafe.
Why Do Truck Accidents Cause Devastating Injuries?
Large commercial trucks present significant hazards on the roadway. The FMCSA says that a fully loaded semi-truck can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds. A vehicle of this weight and size can inflict serious damage on a passenger vehicle and cause tremendous injuries to those inside these vehicles. At Padilla & Rodriguez, LLP, it is not uncommon for our Houston 18-wheeler accident lawyers to help clients who have sustained the following:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Open head wounds
- Broken or dislocated bones
- Loss of or damage to a bodily organ
- Severe lacerations
- Crush injuries
Each of these injuries can lead to a victim needing extensive medical care. Victims may require extended periods of rehabilitation and physical therapy in order to make a full recovery, and victims could even be temporarily or permanently disabled due to their injuries.
Victims of large truck crashes are also likely to experience tremendous emotional and psychological trauma caused by the incident and their injuries.
Who Can Be Held Liable For A Truck Accident Injury?
Truck accidents in Houston can have various causes. In many cases, the actions of the truck driver have led to the incident. This can include the driver:
- Operating while fatigued
- Driving while impaired by alcohol or drugs
- Driving while distracted by the cell phone or other electronic device
- Failing to follow traffic laws or speed limits
When a truck driver causes an accident, liability may fall onto their employer (unless the driver is an independent contractor) through vicarious liability. Ultimately, trucking companies are liable for the actions of their drivers. Truck companies must ensure that drivers are all properly licensed and certified and trained to operate each vehicle.
Trucking companies can also be held liable if they fail to follow FMCSA regulations regarding regular inspection and maintenance of their vehicles. Failure of a truck or a truck part regularly causes accidents on the roadway.
For more information on a particular trucking company, visit the “safer database,” safer.fmcsa.dot.gov.
What Kind Of Compensation Is Available For These Cases?
There are various types of compensation available to victims harmed in a Houston truck accident. This can include both economic and non-economic damages, such as the following:
- Coverage of all medical bills related to the truck accident
- Compensation for lost income if an injured victim cannot work
- Loss of enjoyment of life damages
- Pain and suffering damages
- Possible punitive damages against a negligent truck driver or trucking company
The total amount of compensation awarded in these cases will vary depending on the specific factors related to each particular incident.
Contact A Houston Truck Accident Attorney Today
If you or a loved one has been injured or if your spouse, son/daughter, or parent has been killed in a collision with an 18-wheeler, tractor-trailer, or heavy truck, contact one of our personal injury lawyers in Houston for an initial case review.
At Padilla & Rodriguez, LLP, our skilled and experienced team has the resources necessary to conduct a thorough investigation into your crash and secure the compensation you deserve. We are not afraid to take on aggressive insurance carriers or large trucking companies. It is important to keep in mind that victims in these cases have just two years to file a claim against a negligent truck driver or trucking company in order to recover compensation. When you need a Houston 18-Wheeler accident attorney, you can contact us online for a free consultation of your case.