The Morelli Law Firm handles collision cases involving large rigs, 18-wheelers, tractor-trailers, and semi-trucks. We know the causes of truck accidents, such as violations of state and federal standards controlling vehicle maintenance and driver rest.
Our St. Louis large rig truck accident lawyers are proficient in federal motor carrier rules, can understand and interpret maintenance and driver logs, and can identify instances in which noncompliance caused your injuries.
Our St. Louis big rig truck accident law office protects the rights and interests of wounded accident victims. We have decades of legal experience on our side, and the means to compete with industry giants. When it comes to seeking justice for injury victims, we won’t rest.
Big Rig and Trucking Industry Accidents Are Often Caused By Negligence
The American Trucking Association estimates that there are now 3.5 million truck drivers in the United States. Long hours behind the wheel have taken their toll, leaving many of these drivers exhausted.
Of 78,000 trucks involved in accidents, 87% were caused by human error, according to the large truck crash study by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Ten percent had to do with vehicle performance or malfunction.
To win in a case alleging negligence, you must demonstrate that the truck driver, trucking company, or a third party’s negligence directly resulted in your injuries. If you’ve been injured in an accident with a truck, a big rig accident attorney in St. Louis can help you build your case.
Have You Been Injured In An Accident? Contact Morelli Law877-751-9800
Proof Is Vital to a Claim for a Trucking Accident
To support your case and demonstrate negligence, a lawyer may assist with the collection and analysis of evidence. Even though many disputes are resolved out of court, maximizing a settlement requires proof and sufficient documentation.
Evidence of the following types can be gathered by a St. Louis big rig truck accident attorney to support your claim:
- The crash site evidence
- History of the trucking company’s violations
- Activity on the phones of other drivers
- The information stored in the vehicle’s event data recorder (EDR)
- Truck inspection documents and driving logs
- Documentation of the trucker’s past trips
- CCTV footage, dash cam footage, mobile phone photos, and eyewitness accounts
- Expert witness testimony
- Results of toxicology tests on truck drivers
Possible Compensation for Your Big Rig Truck Accident
Truck accident damages can be accurately calculated with the help of a truck accident attorney in St. Louis. Your attorney can research precedent cases, assemble and calculate your bills and losses, and consult with financial or medical professionals to provide you an accurate estimate for your case.
When calculating compensation for truck accidents, several factors are typically considered:
- Costs of healthcare, both now and in the future
- Loss or destruction of your personal possessions and/or vehicle
- Compensation for past, current, and potential salary loss
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
- The disability-related loss of future wages
- Loss of benefits, loss of retirement
- Problems with one’s mental and emotional health, including trauma
People frequently undervalue the financial impact of vehicle accidents, leading them to accept far less than they deserve.Our attorneys will perform a comprehensive review to ensure that you seek the highest amount of damages and may be fairly compensated.
What Happens When You File a Big Rig Truck Accident Claim?
Being involved in a crash with a big rig is not a common occurrence for most people. It isn’t unusual to have questions when you are preparing to begin the process of seeking compensation for your damages.
While many claims can be settled out of court, cases involving semi-trucks and commercial vehicles are often complicated because so much money is at stake. The procedure for filing claims involving trucks is described below.
Investigation at the Scene
The trucking company’s insurance provider and claims division will dispatch a team of investigators to the location of the accident as soon as they are made aware of it. The purpose of this is to counter any claims of negligence or wrongful death made against them.
The victim of a truck accident should retain legal representation as quickly as possible after the crash. Your St. Louis big rig accident lawyer will then be able to work to counter the defendant’s insurance company and preserve any evidence that can be used in court.
No statements should be made to insurance investigators by the truck accident victim or anyone else involved in the incident before consulting with an experienced attorney who specializes in such cases.
The Negotiation Process
Truck accident victims without an 18-wheeler accident lawyer are treated less favorably by insurance companies than those with attorneys. They regularly exploit those who don’t have legal representation.
This means that in the event of a serious truck accident, the insurance company will likely contact the family in an effort to negotiate a quick settlement for a fraction of the true cost of your damages.
The insurance company is only hedging their bets that they won’t have to pay more than they want. This is why insurance adjusters would rather you didn’t have a lawyer. A big rig accident attorney in St. Louis can help you to avoid exploitation and fight to maximize your claim.
To receive full and fair compensation, cases of serious damage or wrongful death caused by big rig accidents typically result in litigation. It appears that setting a trial date provides many insurers with the motivation to rethink the amount they are willing to pay.
Because of the threat of an unpredictable jury, the trucking firm defendants frequently choose to settle rather than go to trial. A big rig accident lawyer in St. Louis will work to resolve your claim in the most efficient manner possible in order to enhance the value of your claim.
What Impact Do Trucking Regulations Have on My Case?
Large trucks can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds. Both truck drivers and trucking businesses are subject to safety regulations issued by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration due to the size and weight of trucks and their ability to destroy entire families in a fraction of a second.
The regulations address numerous safety concerns. In addition, the regulations stipulate the minimum performance requirements for professional truck drivers and transportation businesses.
It’s important to select a big rig accident attorney in St.Louis who is familiar with federal and state trucking laws to ensure that your claim is investigated thoroughly. Lack of knowledge in this area can put your claim at risk.
The following are some of the most fundamental rules that a truck driver and a motor carrier must observe:
Hours of Service Requirements
Hours of service laws restrict the amount of consecutive hours a truck driver is permitted to work without resting. The guidelines establish a minimum period of time between a truck driver’s previous duty and his or her next opportunity to operate a large vehicle.
As a matter of safety, the hours-of-service laws aim to keep tired and impaired drivers off the road. Your St. Louis big rig truck accident lawyer can review logbooks and EDR data to determine if hours of service rules were followed.
The hours-of-service regulations are frequently ignored by truck drivers due to the immense pressure they face to deliver cargo on time and pick up the following load. The possibility of a breach of these regulations is a crucial element in the investigation of a truck accident case.
Inspection and Maintenance of the Fleet
The firm is accountable for the upkeep of any truck bearing its logo. According to the safety regulations, the vehicle must be reasonably safe, and the trucking firm must make sure that it is in operable condition while on the road.
Before each trip, truck drivers must report harmful hazards to the trucking business and examine the vehicle. A big rig accident lawyer in St. Louis can investigate the inspection and maintenance history to determine whether violations could have caused an accident.
Competency and Qualifications of Drivers
A commercial driver’s license is insufficient to operate a large truck. The trucking firm must take reasonable precautions to make sure that its truck drivers are competent and qualified. Unfortunately, many trucking companies can take shortcuts when there is a driver shortage.
When an employer sends an inexperienced driver on the road and it leads to an accident, your truck accident lawyer can work to hold the trucking company accountable.
Specialized and Hazmat Training
When larger trucks or possibly hazardous items are involved, specialized training is necessary. These standards and regulations are familiar to a St. Louis attorney with expertise in big rig accidents, and they can be persuasive evidence in a truck accident claim.
The truck accident attorney you select must have a comprehensive understanding of the federal safety standards that influence driver and trucking company conduct.
An auto accident lawyer without experience in handling truck crash claims may not be able to identify and prove liability. This alone could dramatically influence the outcome of your case.
St. Louis Big Rig Truck Accident Causes
According to the CDC’s data on motor vehicle collisions, more than one-third of long-haul truck drivers will be involved in a major accident throughout their career. According to the findings, there are increasingly more trucks on the road and a significant increase in mileage.
In recent years, there has been a severe shortage of qualified, experienced big rig truck drivers as the demand for drivers has outpaced the supply. This has resulted in a lack of sufficient training, rushed drivers, and inexperienced drivers on the road.
The following is a list of some of the most common contributors to accidents involving commercial trucks:
- Ignoring a traffic signals
- Carelessly loaded or improperly secured cargo
- Drowsy driver
- Driving too fast for the road conditions
- Obstacles on the road
- Defective truck parts
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Failure to conduct adequate safety inspections
- Distracted driver
- Overloaded truck
- Not maintaining a safe following distance
- Traffic jams or a recent accident on the roadway
Big rig accidents commonly result in fatalities, severe injuries, and altered lives. You shouldn’t be required to pay for someone else’s negligence if it caused you harm and impacted your life.
If someone else’s carelessness had a role in causing your injury, it is absolutely necessary for you to seek the counsel of a St. Louis big rig truck collision attorney who is able to handle your case with empathy and competence.
Get in Touch With a St. Louis Law Firm That Specializes in Cases Involving Big Rig Trucks
Our St. Louis truck accident injury lawyers fight hard to get our clients the financial compensation they require to readjust to life after an accident involving a large truck. You are more than your injuries, and we believe you should have the opportunity to live the life you deserve.
If you or a loved one has been hurt in an accident involving a big rig vehicle, the attorneys at Morelli Law want to assist you in holding the individual, corporation, or corporate entity accountable for their actions.
Clients may take advantage of free case evaluations and consultations with one of our personal injury attorneys, and we will do our best to explain all of your available options to you. Make sure to get in touch with us now.