Semi-trucks and 18 wheelers are a fact of life in the Atlanta area. Big rigs travel in and around Peachtree Corners every day, especially on the Peachtree Parkway and Industrial Boulevard. Those big trucks are part of what makes it possible for all of us to live and work in the little slice of heaven we call Peachtree Corners.
But those big rigs can cause serious damage if you’re in an accident with one of them. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident with a big truck, you should consult with a Peachtree Corners Semi-truck & 18-wheeler accident lawyer. Our accident law firm has recovered millions of dollars for our clients after an 18-wheeler caused a highway accident. Each case is different, but we may be able to help you fight the insurance companies for the compensation you deserve.
Whatever you do, don’t accept an insurance settlement without speaking to a lawyer first. Insurance companies will try and say you caused the accident, or their first offer of a settlement may be woefully inadequate. Working with a lawyer helps put you on an equal footing with the insurance company and improves your chances of getting a fair settlement.
Truck Accidents Are More Serious Than Car Accidents
In general, truck accidents are more serious than other auto accidents, mainly because semi- trucks are so big. An 18-wheeler with a full load can easily weigh in at 80,000 pounds, and it’s longer and taller than anything else on the road.
Semi-trucks also have other characteristics that can make them more dangerous and accident-prone than a sedan or SUV:
- The weight and braking system of 18-wheelers make it harder for them to stop quickly.
- Semi-trucks have large blind spots.
- Some trucks carry flammable or hazardous substances.
- A truck can spill its cargo on the roadway in an accident, creating additional hazards.
- Semis are prone to “jackknifing” or tipping over, both of which can cause serious damage to other vehicles around them.
Semi drivers themselves may also play a factor in truck accidents. Although most truck drivers are careful and responsible, they often have to work grueling schedules with inadequate rest. Increased fatigue can result in more accidents. This is why the federal government has instituted regulations on how long a truck driver can go before pulling over to rest for a required number of hours. But there are drivers who try and cheat the system.
Is the Truck Driver Always at Fault?
Never say always.Every case is different. In legal terms, truck accidents are treated the same as other kinds of accidents in Georgia: the driver who is “at fault” is the one whose carelessness or negligence caused the accident. Sometimes the driver at fault is behind the wheel of the truck, but not always. Some accidents happen because of the nature of the truck, while others are due to negligence. Common causes of big rig accidents include:
- A truck driver changes lanes or merges into or in front of a vehicle he/she couldn’t see because of the truck’s blind spot.
- A truck jackknifes or tips over while making a turn or negotiating a sharp curve.
- A car tries to slip past a truck turning right and gets sandwiched against the curb.
- A truck tire blowout
- Brake failure
- Distracted driving
- Drunk driving
- Fatigued driving
The responding law enforcement agency may or may not cite the truck driver at the scene of a crash. Sometimes a more thorough investigation is needed to determine who is at fault. If the truck driver is found to be at fault, the insurance policy of the trucking company will have to pay for your costs associated with the accident.
What Damages Can I Claim?
If the truck driver or another driver is found at fault in the accident, you can claim damages for all of the costs associated with the accident. These include:
- Ambulance costs
- Hospital bills
- Doctor’s visits
- Physical and occupational therapy
- Mental health treatment for trauma
- Future medical bills
- Lost wages/salary if you missed work because of the accident
- Future wages if you are disabled
- Pain and suffering if a loved one died because of the accident (See Wrongful Death)
We are experienced in filing wrongful death cases for our clients, where we have recovered millions of dollars. We realize no amount of money compensate you for the loss of a loved one, but it can help you with paying off medical and funeral expenses, and taking care of your children’s future.
Talk to a Peachtree Corners Semi-Truck & 18-Wheeler Accident Lawyer for Free
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident with a big rig, consulting with a Peachtree Corners semi-truck and 18-wheeler accident lawyer may be the smartest move you make after your accident. Our lawyers have helped numerous big truck accident victims for over the years. Let us put our experience to work for you with a FREE case evaluation to help you figure out the right next steps for your case.