Commercial trucks and commercial truck drivers are required to adhere to strict federal and state regulations. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is the federal agency that oversees this regulation. Some of this oversight includes:
- The standards used to test and issue commercial driver’s licenses to drivers.
- The compliance, monitoring, and enforcement of the hours of service truck drivers are required to adhere to in order to prevent truck driver fatigue.
- The compliance and enforcement of regular drug screening for drivers.
- The requirements of additional training needed in order to transport hazardous materials and other dangerous cargo.
Despite all of this oversight, there are still far too many truck accidents, resulting in catastrophic injuries and death. In one study conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that spanned over a 33-month period of time, there were 120,000 fatal crashes that involved at least one tractor-trailer truck. In total, there were more than 140,000 18-wheelers involved in those accidents.
While any vehicle accident case can be complicated, truck accident cases are often more complex, which is why victims should consult with a Virginia truck accident attorney to ensure they receive the financial compensation they may be entitled to based on the circumstances of the case.
One of the reasons these cases are often more complex is that there is usually more than one liable party for the victim’s losses. This is why it is important for the attorney to be experienced and well versed in truck accident cases in order to understand the potential for more than one liable party. These liable parties can include:
- The truck driver engaged in negligent or reckless behavior that resulted in the crash.
- The trucking company that the truck driver works for. Trucking companies are responsible for their employees, making sure they are properly trained, licensed, and have a good driving record.
- The shipping company that loaded the cargo that the truck driver was transporting at the time of the accident.
- The company or individual that is responsible for the regular inspections and maintenance of the truck.
A Virginia accident attorney will investigate an accident case in order to prove liability. Some of the different ways he or she will do that include:
- The truck driver’s employment and driving records.
- The truck driver’s medical history.
- The truck driver’s training history.
- The truck driver’s hours of service logs.
- The truck driver’s cell phone history.
- The maintenance records for the truck.
- The trucking company’s history when it comes to complying with FMSCA regulations.
Contact a Virginia Injury Attorney for Assistance
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, you are no doubt facing exorbitant medical bills, loss of income, and multiple other losses. A Virginia truck accident attorney can evaluate your case and determine how much financial compensation you may be entitled to for your injuries.
The legal team at Shapiro, Appleton & Washburn have been successfully advocating for accident victims for more than three decades and will use all available resources to get you the compensation you deserve.