An accident with an 18-wheeler can be far more complicated than a collision with a private passenger auto. It’s important that you have a truck accident attorney protecting your interests from the very beginning. Here are a few facts to consider.
Big rigs cause catastrophic injuries
Big size equals big power. Consider what happens when a muscle bound man uses all of his strength to punch a really small guy. You can bet that if anyone gets hurt, it will be the smaller of the two. The results are pretty much the same when a big rig collides with a car.
Size combined with speed give a truck the power to cause major damage. Even in a minor collision, a big truck can fold or crush a car with little effort. The results can be devastating.
Despite the use of seat belts, car seats, and front and side airbags, the degree of metal displacement caused by a big truck can mean major injuries to drivers and passengers. The power to do damage increases when a big rig is pulling a fully loaded trailer. It’s not surprising that disfigurement, dismemberment, brain injuries or even death are a common result.
The issues may be complex
If a truck runs a red light and strikes a vehicle, the driver’s liability might be crystal clear, but others may have legal responsibilities as well. Even if a tractor trailer driver is operating his own rig, he could be under contract to someone else.
The driver could be bobtailing — traveling without a trailer, or deadheading– carrying an empty trailer. Such situations may involve contractual relationships that transfer responsibility to other entities.
There could be multiple liability insurance policies
Big trucks can cause such catastrophic damage, an injured person might need more than one insurance company to step up and pay their share. Because of complex contractual issues, it’s possible that there may actually be more than one insurance company waiting in the wings to see what happens.
Owners, operators, subcontractors, even the person whose goods are being shipped, might have layers of insurance that could come into play if the underlying limits are exhausted due to catastrophic injuries. There could be Umbrella or Excess policies that make additional liability policy limits available.
Truck accidents can be complicated
There are so many issues to consider when you’re injured in an accident with a tractor trailer. Contact us if you need a truck accident attorney to help you work through your post-accident problems. We can help.
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