Large trucks are those with gross vehicle weight ratings of more than 10,000. The Arizona Department of Transportation has reported that over 2,500 accidents involving tractor trailers happen around the state each year. Due to the weight and size of large trucks, a significant percentage of victims in smaller vehicles are injured when they get into a truck crash, and often there are multiple victims. Sometimes these injuries are fatal. If you were injured in a truck accident, you should promptly seek legal counsel. Attorney Freddy Saavedra is a trustworthy Phoenix truck accident lawyer who can help hold the parties responsible for your injuries accountable.
Truck Accident Cases
Truck accident litigation is more complex than car accident litigation. Truck drivers and trucking companies need to follow federal and state safety regulations in addition to following ordinary road rules and local ordinances. Interstate truck drivers must abide by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations. These regulations include rules for how long a driver can be behind the wheel prior to a rest break, for example.
Truck accidents are often results of a truck driver or trucking company’s negligence. In order to hold a driver accountable for negligence, you will need to show that the defendant owed you a duty of care, a breach of the duty of care, causation, and damages. A truck driver’s breach of the duty of care can involve improper loading, lack of maintenance, speeding, aggressive driving, distracted driving, failing to drive with appropriate care for bad weather, failing to follow traffic signals, and failing to follow traffic laws or regulations.
Pursuing all Liable Parties
A truck accident attorney in the Phoenix area should also look at other potentially responsible parties, such as the trucking company, the truck manufacturer, a third-party loader, and a repair person. It is important to bring everyone who might be potentially responsible for a truck accident into a lawsuit because Arizona follows the rule of several liability. That means that each potentially liable person or entity is responsible only for his or her percentage of liability for the accident. Unlike some other states that follow the doctrine of joint and several liability, you cannot hold a single party responsible for the full amount of damages and require that party to collect from everyone else who contributed to the accident.
Often, a trucking company bears some responsibility for a truck accident. They may be held indirectly liable under a theory of vicarious liability. Moreover, they have their own duties to hire qualified truck drivers, train them and supervise them properly, and use drug screenings. A trucking company can be held directly liable with the assistance of a Phoenix truck accident attorney for its negligence in hiring, training, or supervising a truck driver. Trucking companies can also bear responsibility for negligently maintaining or inspecting the truck.
When an accident is connected to the cargo that the truck was carrying, we can examine whether the loading company may be liable. A loading company could be liable for its negligence if the cargo is loose and not properly secured or if the cargo has not been properly distributed and caused the truck to tip over.
In other situations, it might be appropriate to bring the manufacturer into a truck accident lawsuit. For example, if the truck’s brakes did not work in an accident, it would be appropriate to examine whether the brakes were defective and whether that could be attributed to the manufacturer’s design or manufacturing of the brakes.
Discuss Your Case with a Trustworthy Motor Vehicle Collision Attorney
Truck accidents can be devastating. Often, trucking companies and their insurers take steps to avoid or reduce liability. It is vital to retain an experienced truck accident lawyer in the Phoenix area if you or a loved one was harmed in a truck accident. Attorney Freddy Saavedra represents clients throughout Maricopa County. Call us at 602-753-8917 or complete our online form to set up a free consultation.