Tractor-trailers and semi-trucks are exceptionally dangerous on Collier County roads and highways, especially because of their sheer size compared to smaller vehicles (often 30 times heavier) and the fact they often rumble along at high speeds. Anytime there is a Collier County traffic collision involving a large truck and a passenger vehicle, there is a good chance it was either fatal or resulted in catastrophic injuries.
Associates and Bruce L. Scheiner, Attorneys for the Injured, has been prevailing in Collier County truck accident wrongful death and personal injury cases for nearly 50 years. For the most part, these aren’t simple or straightforward cases. Factors that play into this are:
- Severity of injuries/ greater likelihood of wrongful death;
- Greater likelihood of more than one person seriously injured or killed;
- Complex corporate structure of commercial trucking companies, independent contracting of truck drivers and likelihood of causal vehicle defect or negligent maintenance increases number of defendants and complicates plaintiff’s legal strategy to assert liability of each.
The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles reports there were more than 47,000 commercial vehicles involved in collisions statewide in a single recent year. In Collier County, the average annual breakdown of commercial crash statistics is as follows:
- 630 total commercial vehicle crashes;
- 4 commercial vehicle crash fatalities;
- 91 commercial vehicle crash injuries.
It’s possible – even likely – your truck accident injury claim can be resolved in a settlement, maybe even without having to file a lawsuit. Still, this isn’t the type of claim you want to try to resolve on your own. There’s too much at stake, with injuries frequently being serious enough to require hospitalization, long-term rehabilitation and extended time off work. A Collier County truck accident attorney can fight to help ensure you receive full and fair compensation.Common Causes of Collier County Semi-Truck Accidents and Commercial Vehicle Crashes
Like any other crash, large truck crashes in Collier County are typically the result of some type of negligence. Often, there is driver error involved. But your injury or wrongful death attorney can’t just stop there. Many times, the commercial carrier, vehicle owner, vehicle manufacturer or maintenance service provider are responsible too.
The most recent data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration indicates police respond to 475,000 crashes nationally involving large trucks. Of those, about 22 percent involve some type of injury and about 1 percent are deadly.
Although commercial vehicle crashes can happen anywhere, deadly truck accidents are more likely to occur on rural roads (61 percent) and highway interstates (27 percent), with 15 percent falling into both categories. There are 12 fatal large truck accidents per 1 million people in the U.S. as of 2016, which represents a 13 percent increase from just six years earlier. The majority of those killed – more than 80 percent – were not the persons inside the truck but rather those who were struck, primarily occupants of smaller passenger vehicles, pedestrians and bicyclists.
Common causal factors cited in large truck crash reports:
- Truck drivers who are sleepy or fatigued;
- Truck drivers who are not experienced or properly trained;
- Trucks that are improperly secured or loaded;
- Trucks or trailers that are overloaded;
- Truck brakes that are poorly maintained;
- Trucks with poorly-maintained safety systems (brake lights, head lights, turn signals, reflectors, etc.);
- Truck driver speeding;
- Truck driver improperly screened for serious health problems;
- Truck driver hired despite dangerous driving record;
- Truck driver intoxication due to stimulants or alcohol;
- Truck driver distraction or inattention.
Although commercial drivers are held to certain higher standards compared to other drivers, they are still susceptible to some of the same perils. Plus, they’re on the road for longer stretches and commercial trucking companies are notorious for imposing unrealistic expectations on their drivers to work long, tedious hours without enough rest.Damages for Collier County Truck Accident
Truck accident claims can be tough to resolve for numerous reasons, including multiple vehicles involved, whether you’re deemed partially at-fault, whether negligent defendants are properly insured, etc.
In most truck crashes, there is more than one negligent party who can be sued. These include:
- Truck driver;
- Trucking company/ employer;
- Truck owner or truck leasing company;
- Owner of any attached trailer or company leasing the trailer;
- 3PL or other supply chain management company responsible for loading the truck;
- Truck manufacturer or manufacturer of certain truck components.
Many truck accident victims suffer overwhelming losses due to the severity of their injuries, so we work closely with victims and sometimes expert witnesses to identify all potential defendants and move on viable claims for damages as soon as possible. Collier County trucking accident cases we accept often result in compensation for:
- Medical expenses;
- Future medical costs (estimated);
- Wages lost;
- Future lost earning potential;
- Pain and suffering;
- Permanent disfigurement and/ or disability;
- Wrongful death.
Trust our experienced injury law firm to help you through this trying and complicated process.
If you or someone you care about has been hurt, contact the Collier County truck accident lawyers at Associates and Bruce L. Scheiner, Attorneys for the Injured. You pay us no fees unless we win.