We Have Recovered Millions of Dollars for Accident Victims
Roads in Columbus and other communities across Ohio experience a large volume of commercial vehicle traffic each day. With increased traffic comes the increased risk of accident and, unfortunately for drivers of regular passenger vehicles, they can find themselves seriously injured in accidents with 18-wheelers.
The experienced Columbus truck accident lawyers at Ross, Midian & Breitmayer, LLC work diligently to protect the rights of truck accident victims. With millions of dollars recovered for our past clients, we have the legal knowledge necessary to build a strong case on your behalf. We understand the unique challenges and financial hardships you are facing, and we are prepared to aggressively fight for the maximum compensation you are owed. If the liable insurance company refuses to offer an acceptable settlement, we are ready to take your case to trial.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents in Ohio
While any motor vehicle accident can be devastating, the large size and immense weight of commercial trucks mean they cause immense damage when they collide with smaller passenger vehicles and motorcycles. As a result, truck accidents are far more likely to result in catastrophic injury and death than other types of accidents. This makes these cases complex, as victims require compensation not only for their immediate medical costs but also for the expenses associated with ongoing treatment as well.
Another complicating factor in truck accident claims is the issue of liability. While a truck driver may have caused the accident, his or her trucking company may be liable for the accident because the truck driver was “on the clock” when the collision occurred. Additionally, a third party, such as a manufacturer or another motorist, could be partially or wholly to blame for an accident. It’s important that we look at the causes of the accident in order to determine who is liable.
Some of the most common factors that lead to trucking accidents include:
- Truck drivers operating in excess of federal hours limits
- Drivers who are distracted or using a cell phone while driving
- Operators under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Trucking companies that fail to maintain their vehicles
- Cargo that is not secured properly or shifts while driving
- Overloaded trucks carrying excessive cargo
- Truck drivers behaving negligently (speeding, violating traffic laws, etc.)
- Defective trucks or truck parts
- Another motorist on the road acting carelessly or recklessly
- Defective or faulty road design or construction
As previously mentioned, truck accidents often result in injuries that can take a long time to heal, leaving you in a very difficult position financially. At Ross, Midian & Breitmayer, LLC, we make sure that insurance companies do not try to needlessly delay your case or engage in unfair settlement practices.
We’ve Recovered Millions for Injured Clients
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Who Can Be Sued in a Truck Accident Case?
With the causes of a truck accident explained, it becomes clearer that there might not be just one party to blame for the crash. In many truck accident cases, investigators are able to conclude that multiple parties contributed to the crash or its likelihood in a variety of different ways. Filing a claim or lawsuit against one defendant, therefore, might not be enough. Instead, you could be better off filing against several. Our truck accident attorneys can make this process simpler for you, regardless of the number of defendants.
Parties that could be sued in your truck accident case include:
- Truck driver: It is rare for the truck driver to not be held liable at all for a trucking accident. No matter the details of the crash, the truck driver is the only person in direct control of the vehicle.
- Trucking company: Companies that hire or contract truck drivers can become liable for the accidents they cause in various ways, such as hiring unlicensed drivers, not training novice drivers, or requiring drivers to work extended shifts that lead to exhaustion.
- Truck part manufacturer: When a truck accident is caused by a failed truck part, engineers might determine that the truck part was doomed to fail due to a defect, which makes the part manufacturer liable.
- Product load crew: When a truck receives or unloads cargo, it is most common for a third-party company to handle this process. Load crews can misload cargo in a way that contributes to a crash, like stacking the products too high and making the trailer top-heavy. If this happens, then the company that pays the load crew could be sued for compensation, too.
How Are Truck Accidents Different from Car Accidents?
There are a few significant differences between truck accidents and car accidents, such as:
- Liability: As discussed, liability for a truck accident can be spread among several parties.
- Injuries: Truck accidents tend to cause significantly worse injuries than a car crash due to the dramatic size and weight differences between a big rig and a passenger vehicle.
- Damages: The value of a truck accident claim tends to be much larger, too, because severe injuries cause more damages – like medical treatment costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering – when compared to injuries in other cases.
Let Our Experienced Attorneys Help You Fight for Fair Compensation
Frequently Asked Questions About Truck Accidents
The insurance companies in your case may make it nearly impossible for you to get the compensation you deserve. Once we understand what has happened in your accident, we can prepare a solid plan to recover compensation from all of the responsible parties. When these companies refuse to recognize the value of your claim, we are more than ready to take your case to court. We do not shy away from trial, especially when the demands of the case require us to litigate to get justice for you and your family. You can trust us to put your needs at the forefront of your case as we seek compensation for you.
You want to have a truck accident attorney represent you for your claim or lawsuit, but can you? Is hiring a truck accident lawyer an affordable option for everyone? If you come to Ross, Midian & Breitmayer, LLC, then it is. We are proud to offer free consultations and contingency fee agreements to our truck accident clients. Free initial consultations allow you to explore your legal options without paying anything upfront. Contingency fees mean we are not paid any attorney fees unless we end your case with a positive settlement or award for you. Additionally, contingency fees are equal to a percentage of your winnings, so you will never owe our firm more than you can afford. There is even a chance that we can argue that the defendant should be responsible for the entirety of our fees.
The majority of truck accidents cause serious injuries due to the significant disparity between a commercial truck’s weight and that of the average passenger vehicle. A low-speed collision can still cause a sedan, SUV, or pickup truck to be knocked off the road or flip. With this said, it is safer to assume that all truck accidents are serious until an investigation proves otherwise.
You need to identify the person who caused your truck accident as best you can. In addition to the usual information that you need to collect, you should also note the truck company’s name and any ID numbers printed on the cab and trailer. If there are any issues with identifying the truck driver, then this extra information can be what helps your attorney track them down. The trailer number should be visible on various spots on it, including both sides and the door.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is a federal agency that regulates the country’s commercial trucking industry. Liability in a truck accident can be influenced by FMCSA rules. For example, if the truck that hit you broke the federal weight limit of 80,000 pounds, then the truck driver’s liability could greatly increase.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) might be called upon to investigate your crash, depending on the type of commercial truck that hit you and where the accident happened. In some cases, the most useful evidence is only made available after a government agency becomes involved. Our attorneys can work with NTSB investigators to look for more evidence of the trucker’s negligence.
There are countless trucking and transportation companies across the United States. Some of them are recognizable corporations, but many are small businesses that you might have never seen before your accident. Contacting such small businesses can become frustrating because some will try to avoid liability for a crash simply by refusing to answer your calls or emails. If the trucking company won’t talk with you about the accident, then you should call (614) 228-4488 immediately. We can take legal action against them. For example, we might be able to file a claim for compensation that automatically defaults to your favor if they refuse to acknowledge it.