Accidents that involve big commercial vehicles are devastating. Usually, those involved sustain serious, catastrophic, or even fatal injuries because of the trucks’ size and weight. In addition, truck accident claims are usually more complicated than claims for car accidents since they include several parties that might share liability for the accident. You can learn more about these parties when you click here.
Factors that Make Truck Collisions More Complicated Than Car Crashes
As truck accidents usually result in significant damage, injury, and fatalities, truck drivers need to go through extra training and adhere to more rules and regulations than those who drive cars. Truck drivers need to follow federal laws as well as state laws and restrictions. The following are factors that can make truck accident claims complicated:
- Truck ownership. In accidents that involve only passenger vehicles, the occupants are usually the owners of the cars. In this case, those involved in a car accident can more easily deal with insurers and recover damages for their losses and injuries. Meanwhile, truck drivers can be company drivers, lessees, or owner-operators and their status can impact who should take responsibility for their actions.
- Cargo. Commercial trucks haul heavy cargo, increasing the seriousness of collisions that involve them. The cargo tends to add weight to the truck, increase stopping time, and reduce the visibility of the driver behind and beside the rig. In this case, cargo loaders and manufacturers may be held liable for the crash.
- Insurance coverage. Every truck owner should have minimum insurance coverage rules. However, the kinds of truck coverage vary. Some coverage is based on the kind of load like with hazardous materials. Investigating the applicable coverage and its sufficiency given the circumstances is often daunting.
- Fault determination. Vehicle crashes can result in finger-pointing by the parties involved. In a truck accident, somebody may have witnessed a truck driver dozing off, indicating a possible violation of the legal hours of service and mandatory rest periods. But the trucker may claim they swerved because of a mechanical malfunction or a shifting load. They may try to blame the other party for causing the crash.
Seeking Compensation Following a Truck Accident
Insurers are notorious for giving claimants a fight, focusing on giving the least amount of compensation possible or not giving anything at all. With truck accidents, this becomes more complicated because several insurers will try to diminish or deny fault. Also, they may point the finger at the victim for partial blame, which decreases the amount of compensation they can get. Thankfully, the complexities in truck accident cases can be more manageable when the victim works with a reliable truck accident attorney.