A trucking accident in Atlanta could change the course of your life. The crash could cause you severe and debilitating injuries, or unexpectedly take the life from a loved one. Whether this collision occurred on one of Atlanta’s congested bottlenecks, like I-85 for example, or any other frequented roadway around Georgia, the cost of your trucking accident may be in the thousands in medical expenses, property damage and lost wages. The non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, can be more difficult to handle.
The Atlanta truck accident attorneys at Butler Wooten & Peak LLP can help you and your family get through this tough time. We have the experience, resources, and dedication you need for a strong claim against a trucking company, its driver, or another party. If someone else’s negligence caused your accident in Fulton County, you or your family could be eligible for compensation for related losses. Call (800) 242-2962 for a free consultation today!
Trucking accident lawsuits can be complex in Georgia. They often involve federal laws as well as state laws, from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). They also involve potential trucking company liability, and vicarious liability. Vicarious liability is the legal responsibility of an employer for the actions and misconduct of employees. Although most trucking companies use independent contractors instead of making their drivers employees, they will still be vicariously liable under federal law.
If complicated laws were not enough to make you seek help from an attorney, consider the daunting task of negotiating your claim against a major insurance corporation. Trucking insurance companies will have ample resources to fight your claim. Hiring a lawyer of your own in Atlanta can even the playing field and increase your chances of securing compensation for your damages. Without an attorney’s help, you could agree to a lowball settlement offer or accept a denied claim – risking your financial future.
Tracking truck accident statistics helps the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) improve the safety of its roadways for drivers. Data on why and how trucking accidents happen can lead to important road updates, for example, such as the latest project to build a commercial-vehicle only highway in Atlanta. Information can also help spread awareness among drivers as to what causes the most trucking accidents, and how to avoid them.
At Butler Wooten & Peak LLP, you are not just another statistic as the victim of a truck accident in Atlanta. We see and respect the person behind the personal injury. Our lawyers want to get to know you, and fully understand how your crash impacted your life. We will then use this information to articulate your damages to a judge and jury, fighting for fair compensation during settlement negotiations or a personal injury trial.
A commercial truck’s loaded weight can be as much as 80,000 pounds. The average passenger car weighs around 3,500 pounds. This disparity alone can increase the catastrophic nature of a trucking accident, as the heavier vehicle will impart gravitational forces into the lighter one during a collision. The weight, as well as the size and structure of commercial trucks leads to unique accident types you would not see in typical car accidents.
A jackknife truck accident occurs when the trailer of an 18-wheeler swings out at an angle to the cab of the truck. Jackknifing can occur if the truck driver uses the wrong braking technique, especially when going down a hill or around a corner. Jackknifing makes it impossible for the driver to control the truck and could result in a rollover.
An 18-wheeler could be more prone to a tire blowout than a typical motor vehicle due to the weight of the cargo and the number of miles driven. Tire blowouts can happen if the truck rolls over a nail or other debris, if the trucking company failed to properly maintain its tires, or if the tire contained a manufacturing defect. A blowout can lead to dangerous loss of control of the truck.
Commercial trucks have wide blind spots, or No Zones, on all four sides of the truck. Truck drivers may not be able to see vehicles sitting within 30 feet of the truck’s rear, 20 feet to the front, one lane to the left, and two lanes to the right. Blind-spot collisions can occur if the truck driver makes an unsafe lane change, believing the lane to be empty.
If a trucking company or its cargo loaders do not obey the rules of cargo securement under the FMCSA, it could lead to deadly lost load accidents. Lost loads can send products abruptly into the road, causing a crash or smashing through the windshields of following vehicles. The cargo company or trucking company could be liable for lost load accidents.
Other types of trucking accidents include rear-end collisions, wide-turn accidents, under-ride accidents, and head-on collisions. The type of accident you were in could decide important factors such as the injuries you sustain, the cause of the wreck, and who may be liable. In a jackknife accident, for example, the truck driver is likely responsible for using the incorrect braking technique. A driver causing the wreck will generally point to company liability.
Once you identify your type of accident, the next step is to determine the cause. Police officers, insurance companies, and law firms can all help you determine what caused your truck accident. Do not admit fault to anyone, even if you believe you may have contributed. Protect your rights by sticking to the facts, and not speculating on fault. A proper investigation of the incidents leading up to the crash can determine who or what caused it to occur.
Knowing who or what caused your crash is one of the first steps toward obtaining financial compensation for your damages. In Georgia, you must determine fault before you can file an insurance claim. The state’s tort-based insurance laws state that all car accident victims will seek recovery from the at-fault driver’s insurance company. This could mean the trucking company’s insurer is responsible for reimbursing you for your serious injuries.
In our years helping clients through truck accident claims in Atlanta, we have seen a wide range of personal injuries. We have seen first-hand how devastating a collision with a commercial truck can be. Our lawyers recognize the catastrophic, disabling, and fatal injuries these accidents can cause. We are here to guide you through the claims process, no matter what type of injuries the crash caused you or someone close to you. Some of these include:
The more severe your injuries, the greater the value of your claim. A truck accident that caused significant pain and suffering, permanent disfigurement, disability, or the death of a loved one demand attention from an attorney. Our Atlanta lawyers want to help you seek justice and compensation for your damages from the liable party.
It can be difficult to answer the liability question after a truck accident in Atlanta. Unlike a typical car accident case, a truck accident involves the potential liability of the trucking company or a different party.
Determining liability for your damages may take an in-depth look at exactly what caused your injuries. Liability could come down to one or more parties depending on the circumstances of your case.
Butler Wooten & Peak LLP has years of experience handling trucking accidents and other serious auto accident cases throughout the state of Georgia. We have an outstanding verdict and settlement record. We win cases based on our knowledge, resources, and aggressive litigation methods – but also thanks to our client-focused services. Our lawyers personalize our legal strategies based on each unique client and case. Speak with an attorney today about your Atlanta truck accident case. Contact us for a free consultation! (800) 242-2962