Pittsburgh Truck Accident Lawyer
Car accidents are always dangerous, but accidents involving big rigs (tractor-trailers) are particularly serious. These vehicles are several times larger, exponentially heavier, and far less maneuverable than most typical passenger vehicles. Accidents involving tractor-trailers are often fatal or cause serious injuries. It’s important to know your options if you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident.
Causes of Truck Accidents
Truck accidents can happen for a number of reasons. Among the most common are driver error, unsafe loads and faulty equipment. No matter what caused your truck accident, it’s imperative that you seek legal counsel to ensure that the responsible parties are held accountable for the damage they cause, so you aren’t left with astronomical expenses due to your injuries.
In the case of driver error, truck drivers often work long shifts and drive hundreds of miles in a single jaunt. While oversight agencies such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) enforce strict guidelines as to the nature of truck driver’s working days, some truck drivers choose to push themselves too far and drive unsafely. Truck drivers who drive too long without adequate rest can drive recklessly or at excessive speeds, or operate their vehicles under the influence of drugs or alcohol – putting all other motorists at serious risk.
The trucks themselves often cause accidents if they aren’t properly loaded or maintained. Tractor-trailers cover thousands of miles and spend far more time on the road than typical passenger vehicles. As such, they require careful and thorough maintenance by certified technicians. If a trucking company fails to inspect and service their trucks appropriately, defects and hazards may go unnoticed and contribute to an accident.
Additionally, these vehicles carry extremely heavy loads, with some loaded trucks weighing in excess of 80,000 pounds. Tractor-trailers have higher centers of gravity than other vehicles, so they need careful packing and securing. Special cargo, including smaller vehicles, construction materials, equipment, lumber, steel beams and concrete pipes, must be secured as well. If a big rig’s load is improperly secured or imbalanced, sudden braking or sharp turning can cause a jackknife (when the trailer swings out wide to the side of the truck) or a rollover (when the tractor-trailer flips and rolls onto its side).
Possible Defendants in a Truck Accident Suit
If you are injured in a trucking accident, your attorney will help you determine the responsible party or parties. A negligent driver or trucking company may be to blame. If a defective vehicle or part caused the accident, you may be able to file a product liability claim against the manufacturer. If a loved one died in a truck accident, you may be able to file a wrongful death claim on his or her behalf.
You may be able to claim compensation for a variety of expenses, including:
- Medical bills incurred from your injuries.
- The costs of necessary medical and rehabilitative treatments.
- Lost wages from time spent out of work.
- Compensation for permanent disabilities caused by the accident.
- Pain and suffering.
- Property damage to your vehicle and belongings inside the vehicle.
It’s crucial to contact a dependable and experienced legal team when you’ve been involved in a serious accident – and to do so quickly.
If you are in the Pittsburgh area and need legal representation, contact Ronald J. Bua & Associates. Our team has served the Pittsburgh area in all manner of personal injury cases. Explore our website for more information about our team and practice areas, then contact us to schedule a free, no-obligation initial consultation. We’ll review your case and determine your options for pursuing a lawsuit.