Are crashes involving big rigs different than those involving only passenger vehicles? You bet. Commercial motor vehicles can weigh up to 80,000 pounds when fully loaded. When a huge machine of this size crashes, severe injuries are common. Fatal injuries are far more common in crashes that involve big rigs.
Still, there is slightly good news for those considering bringing a lawsuit after a crash with one of these behemoth machines. It can be easier to recover damages in lawsuits involving the trucking industry.
There are a few reasons for this. First, a savvy personal injury lawyer has more legal theories to work with. In any accident case, a lawyer can pursue recovery under a theory of negligence. This requires the lawyer to prove that the defendant failed to exercise reasonable care to avoid injuries to others. The trucking industry is heavily regulated, and when applicable laws and regulations are violated, this can raise a presumption that reasonable care was not used. Here are just a few of the types of regulations at play in the trucking industry:
- drug testing for drivers;
- mandatory restrictions on drive times and rest periods;
- maximum weight and size restrictions; and
- hazardous material restrictions.
Second, there are often more potential defendants subject to suit when a big rig is involved in an accident. For example, the driver may have been employed by a company; the truck may have been owned, loaded, or maintained by different entities; and all of these may have different insurance companies. As a result, more entities often play a part in safe operation of the truck.
Crashes with big rigs tend to be particularly severe and can wreak havoc on a person’s body and life. If you or a family member has been injured in a bad wreck with a truck, call us at 888.777.1776 or use our online contact form. Delays can hurt your case, so please don’t wait.