Working as a truck driver such as a semi-truck on America’s highways comes with an increased risk of road accidents compared to the general population. This article provides information on your possible rights to make a claim via workers compensation or against an at fault driver if you’ve suffered an injury in a trucking accident.
Can you sue if injured as a truck driver?
Yes, you can sue if you are injured as a truck driver. If you are injured on the job as a truck driver, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Workers’ compensation is a state-mandated insurance program that provides medical care and lost wages for employees who are injured on the job
However, if your injuries were caused by someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing, you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit to seek additional compensation for your injuries. For example, if your injuries were caused by another driver who was texting or driving drunk, you may be able to sue that driver for damages.
It is important to consult with a personal injury attorney to determine if you have grounds for a lawsuit and to help you navigate the legal process.
What compensation can be claimed for a trucking accident?
If you are injured in a trucking accident, you may be able to claim compensation for a variety of damages, including:
- Medical expenses: You can claim compensation for the cost of medical care and treatment, including hospital stays, surgeries, medications, and rehabilitation.
- Lost wages: You can claim compensation for any income that you lost as a result of the accident, including lost overtime or bonuses.
- Pain and suffering: You can claim compensation for the physical and emotional pain and suffering that you experienced as a result of the accident.
- Loss of enjoyment of life: You can claim compensation for any loss of enjoyment of life that you experienced as a result of the accident, such as being unable to engage in hobbies or activities that you enjoyed before the accident.
- Loss of consortium: If your injuries affect your ability to have a normal relationship with your spouse, you may be able to claim compensation for loss of consortium.
- Property damage: You can claim compensation for any damage to your personal property, such as your car or personal belongings, that was caused by the accident.
- Punitive damages: In some cases, you may be able to claim punitive damages, which are designed to punish the defendant for their wrongdoing and deter others from engaging in similar behavior.
It is important to consult with a personal injury attorney to determine the specific damages that you may be eligible to claim in your case.
Big rig truck specialist accident lawyers
Big rig truck accident lawyers are personal injury attorneys who specialize in representing clients who have been injured in accidents involving large commercial trucks, such as semi-trucks or 18-wheelers. These lawyers have experience and expertise in handling the unique legal issues that can arise in these cases, such as federal trucking regulations and the involvement of multiple parties.
Attorney Hawk will help match you with the most appropriate vetted attorneys with relevant experience.
Time limits for truck accident compensation claims in California?
In California, the time limit for filing a truck accident compensation claim is two years from the date of the accident. This is known as the statute of limitations, and it applies to both personal injury lawsuits and workers’ compensation claims.
If you fail to file your claim within the time limit, you may be barred from recovering any compensation for your injuries. Therefore, it is important to consult with a personal injury attorney as soon as possible after the accident to ensure that your claim is filed within the time limit.
There are some exceptions to the time limit, such as if the injured person is a minor or if the defendant is a government entity. In these cases, the time limit may be extended. It is important to consult with an attorney to determine the specific time limit for your claim.
Most common injuries from trucking accidents
The most common injuries from trucking accidents include:
- Head injuries: Head injuries, such as concussions or skull fractures, can occur when a person’s head hits a hard surface or is hit by flying debris.
- Neck injuries: Neck injuries, such as whiplash or spinal cord damage, can occur when a person’s head is jerked forward or backward with force.
- Back injuries: Back injuries, such as herniated discs or spinal fractures, can occur when a person’s spine is twisted or compressed.
- Broken bones: Broken bones, such as fractures or dislocations, can occur when a person is hit by a heavy object or is crushed in a collision.
- Soft tissue injuries: Soft tissue injuries, such as bruises or sprains, can occur when a person is hit or jolted by the force of the accident.
- Internal injuries: Internal injuries, such as internal bleeding or organ damage, can occur when a person’s internal organs are damaged by the force of the accident.
- Burns: Burns, from heat, chemicals, or electrical sources, can occur when a person is exposed to fire or hazardous materials in the accident.
- Amputations: Amputations, or the loss of a limb, can occur when a person’s limb is crushed or severed in the accident.
- Psychological injuries: Psychological injuries, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or depression, can occur as a result of the traumatic experience of the accident.
- Fatal injuries: Fatal injuries, such as brain death or heart failure, can occur when a person’s injuries are so severe that they cannot be survived.
Most common locations for truck accidents in California
The most common locations for truck accidents in California include:
- Highways: Highways are common locations for truck accidents, as they are used by large trucks to transport goods across long distances.
- Intersections: Intersections, where roads and highways intersect, are common locations for truck accidents due to the increased risk of collisions.
- Freeway on-ramps and off-ramps: Freeway on-ramps and off-ramps, where trucks enter and exit the highway, are common locations for truck accidents due to the high speeds and close proximity of vehicles.
- Truck stops: Truck stops, where trucks park to rest and refuel, are common locations for truck accidents due to the increased activity and congestion.
- Construction zones: Construction zones, where roads and highways are undergoing maintenance or repair, are common locations for truck accidents due to the presence of heavy equipment and changing traffic patterns.
- Bridges and tunnels: Bridges and tunnels, which are often narrow and have limited visibility, are common locations for truck accidents.
- Residential areas: Residential areas, where trucks may be making deliveries or picking up goods, are common locations for truck accidents due to the presence of pedestrians and other vehicles.
- Mountain roads: Mountain roads, which have steep inclines and sharp curves, are common locations for truck accidents due to the increased risk of rollovers and loss of control.
- Urban areas: Urban areas, with their high traffic volumes and congestion, are common locations for truck accidents.
- Freight yards: Freight yards, where trucks load and unload goods, are common locations for truck accidents due to the increased activity and potential for collisions.
Most common causes of truck accidents
The common causes of truck accidents include:
- Driver fatigue: Driver fatigue, or being tired while driving, is a common cause of truck accidents. Long hours on the road, irregular sleep schedules, and inadequate rest breaks can all contribute to driver fatigue.
- Distracted driving: Distracted driving, such as texting or using a cell phone while driving, is a leading cause of truck accidents.
- Drunk driving: Drunk driving is a common cause of truck accidents, as alcohol impairs a driver’s ability to make safe decisions and operate their vehicle.
- Speeding: Speeding, or driving above the posted speed limit, is a common cause of truck accidents. Large trucks require more time and distance to stop, making it more difficult to avoid accidents at high speeds.
- Inexperience: Inexperience, or lack of training or knowledge, can cause truck accidents. New or inexperienced drivers may not have the skills or knowledge to handle the challenges of driving a large truck.
- Poor vehicle maintenance: Poor vehicle maintenance, such as not regularly checking or repairing brakes or tires, can cause truck accidents.
- Inclement weather: Inclement weather, such as rain or snow, can make it difficult for drivers to see and avoid accidents.
- Overloading: Overloading, or carrying more weight than the truck is designed to handle, can cause accidents. Overloaded trucks can have difficulty stopping or maneuvering, increasing the risk of accidents.
- Aggressive driving: Aggressive driving, such as speeding or weaving in and out of traffic, can cause truck accidents.
- Poor road conditions: Poor road conditions, such as potholes or uneven surfaces, can contribute to truck accidents.