Salisbury, MD Truck Accident Lawyer
Car accidents are tough to go through, and victims often face serious injuries. Truck accidents generate a whole other level of trauma and injury for those involved. The disparity between the size of a commercial truck and a regular vehicle means that truck accidents almost invariably result in severe injury or death. Fortunately, there are legal options at your disposal to get the compensation you are entitled to after a truck accident.
Pursuing a truck accident lawsuit is often easier with the help of an experienced attorney. An attorney at your side can help fight trucking companies and prevent insurance companies from taking advantage of you.
Reach out to our truck accident lawyers at Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (410) 694-7291 today for a free discussion of your case.
Filing a Truck Accident Lawsuit in Salisbury, MD
File your truck accident lawsuit promptly. There is a law called the statute of limitations that limits how long you have to sue.
The statute of limitations for a civil lawsuit in Maryland is three years. If you do not file within that time, the court will not hear your case, and you will not recover any damages.
Some things can “toll,” or pause, the statute of limitations. If you are under 18 years old when a truck accident happens to you, the timer does not start until the day before your 18th birthday. If you receive medical care because of a truck accident and don’t find out about a lingering injury until later, that could also cause the statutory period to start at the discovery of the injury and not at the time of the accident.
Even if an exception applies to you, it is always a good idea to file your case sooner rather than later.
What Causes Truck Accidents in Salisbury, MD
Several factors are likely to have a hand in causing truck accidents. While it could very well be bad driving on the truck driver’s part, other things could contribute to causing a truck accident. For example, an improperly loaded truck will be unwieldy and more difficult to navigate safely, and a defective piece of equipment could lead to an accident.
Sometimes, it really is as simple as “it’s the driver’s fault.” Most truck accidents where the driver is at fault will be because of negligence.
Negligence means that the truck driver was careless and did conduct themselves as an ordinary, prudent truck driver would. Garden-variety driver negligence in a truck accident will look similar to negligence in other motor vehicle accidents. If the driver was texting or speeding, they were being negligent. The same is true when it comes to any other traffic violation.
Truckers have knowledge and skills tailored to driving large commercial trucks. Truck drivers are expected to know how wide they must turn to be safe and when to hit the brakes in a large, heavy vehicle carrying cargo. If a truck driver did not turn safely or otherwise didn’t act as a reasonable trucker should, you might have a negligence claim against them.
Commercial trucks carry heavy cargo over long distances. An innumerable number of goods could be loaded into any given truck trailer. If those items are loaded improperly, their weight could throw the truck off balance, resulting in an unwieldy vehicle for the driver to control. Additionally, improper use of tie-downs could lead to cargo shifting more than it is supposed to. Poor balance due to improper loading could result in the truck fishtailing into other lanes, folding in a “jackknife” accident, or even flipping over.
If the truck that caused your accident was improperly loaded, you might have a claim with the truck company.
Sometimes, the truck just breaks. Often a mechanical malfunction is not just bad luck but is the result of some defect in the vehicle. Defects can generate claims against the truck or auto part manufacturer.
Several factors are taken into account when determining whether a truck is defective. If a truck is designed in a way that is not consistent with industry safety standards or needs, it will be considered defective even if it is technically working as intended. For example, if the brakes on the truck work fine but aren’t strong enough for that truck’s setup, the truck will still be considered defective.
A truck is also defective if it does not work as intended. For example, if the connection point between the truck and the trailer is weak because it left the manufacturer with a micro crack in it, the truck will be considered defective. If the brakes were installed incorrectly, that would also make the truck defective.
Asleep at the Wheel Trucking Accidents in Salisbury, MD
Falling asleep at the wheel is a problem for all motorists, but for truck drivers, the consequences of doing so are amplified due to the potential destruction commercial trucks can cause.
Truckers make money delivering goods. They are therefore incentivized if not by their employer, then by their own financial gain, to deliver things quickly. Stopping to rest is not conducive to that goal.
There are regulations that dictate how long a truck driver can drive continuously before they must rest. Usually, the maximum time a truck driver can travel in one go is eleven hours. Past that point, the driver is in violation of regulations. Drivers on long hauls are more prone to fatigue and more likely to make critical mistakes on the road.
Sleep apnea is a medical condition where breathing stops intermittently while sleeping. While it is a treatable condition that is often mild, it can be quite serious. Sleep apnea can cause increased drowsiness and fatigue during the day. For this reason, people with mild or severe sleep apnea often make dangerous truck drivers.
Call Our Salisbury, MD Truck Accident Lawyers Today
Our truck accident lawyers at Rice, Murtha & Psoras can be contacted at (410) 694-7291 for a free case analysis.