Dallas Truck Accident Lawyer
Truck accidents are a common source of serious injuries in the Dallas area. Unfortunately, many of these collisions happen as the result of careless behavior exhibited by truck drivers and trucking companies. For example, a truck accident may happen because a driver was speeding or because a trucking company did not properly secure the cargo on the back of a tractor-trailer.
If you suffered a truck accident, the team at our law firm can help investigate your collision to determine who is at fault. Afterwards, we will explain the appropriate route to compensation. There may be multiple forms of monetary damages available to you.
Seek support and guidance from our experienced truck accident attorneys at The Queenan Law Firm, P.C. by dialing (817) 476-1797 for a free evaluation of your potential case.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents in Dallas
Crashes involving large trucks can stem from several different forms of negligent conduct. For instance, the following are all common causes of truck accidents in Dallas:
Distracted driving is a very common source of truck accidents. In general, there are three different forms of distraction that may occur.
First, drivers may be visually distracted when they take their eyes off the road. Second, drivers may be manually distracted by any activity that causes them to remove their hands from the wheel. Finally, cognitive distraction happens when motorists take their minds off the task of driving.
There are several different activities that frequently distract truck drivers in Dallas. Some activities such as texting or using a GPS may even involve multiple forms of distraction. Thankfully, if your crash was caused by a distracted driver, then our truck accident attorneys can help pursue payment for the injuries your sustained.
Speeding is a common form of negligence that can lead to truck accidents. Trucks are massive vehicles that require ample space to maneuver and come to a stop. When a truck driver exceeds the speed limit, they reduce their ability to control their vehicle effectively.
Speeding becomes especially dangerous on winding roads or in inclement weather conditions. For instance, a truck driver may be rushing to meet a tight delivery deadline. In their haste, they ignore posted speed limits and push their vehicle well beyond safe speeds. As they approach a sharp curve in the road, they realize too late that they can’t navigate the turn at such a high speed. The truck veers off the road, crashing into a guardrail or even tipping over. The impact can result in not only damage to the truck but also a potential hazard for other vehicles on the road.
High-speed truck accidents are especially likely to result in serious harm. Fortunately, there are several forms of evidence that may be utilized to prove that speeding drivers are at fault for their collisions.
Disobeying Traffic Signals
Traffic signals and signs are in place to regulate the flow of traffic and prevent accidents. Disregarding these signals, whether intentionally or due to inattention, can lead to catastrophic collisions. Imagine a truck driver who fails to stop at a red light at a busy intersection. This blatant violation of traffic rules can result in a collision with cross-traffic vehicles that have the right of way. The force of the impact can cause severe injuries to drivers and passengers involved, potentially leading to long-term medical treatment and rehabilitation.
Improper Cargo Securement
The safe transport of cargo is of paramount importance for truck drivers. Improperly secured cargo can lead to accidents, road hazards, and damage to the truck itself. Consider a scenario where a truck is carrying a load of large construction materials. If these materials are not properly secured, they might shift during transit. As the truck rounds a corner or encounters a sudden stop, the unsecured materials can shift dramatically, causing the truck to become imbalanced. This imbalance could lead to the truck overturning or jackknifing, endangering nearby vehicles and causing a substantial traffic disruption.
Poor Vehicle Maintenance
Truck drivers and trucking companies are responsible for ensuring that their vehicles are in proper working condition before hitting the road. Neglecting routine maintenance checks can result in mechanical failures while driving. For example, a truck with worn-out brake pads or malfunctioning brake systems might struggle to stop in time, especially when traveling at high speeds. In a scenario where the truck driver encounters a sudden traffic slowdown, their inability to brake effectively could lead to a collision with the vehicle ahead.
Truck drivers often face grueling schedules and long hours on the road. The pressure to meet delivery deadlines might lead some drivers to push through fatigue. However, tired driving can be as dangerous as drunk driving. Consider a tired truck driver who has been driving for hours without adequate rest. As their fatigue increases, their concentration diminishes, and they might even nod off momentarily. In this state, they could drift into other lanes or fail to react promptly to changing road conditions. This could result in an accident where the truck collides with another vehicle or runs off the road.
Operating a truck under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a reckless act that endangers everyone on the road. Alcohol and drugs impair a driver’s coordination, decision-making abilities, and reaction times. If a truck driver is intoxicated, their ability to navigate turns, maintain a steady speed, and respond to sudden changes in traffic is compromised. For instance, a drunk truck driver might miss a stop sign at an intersection, leading to a collision with a vehicle that had the right of way. Such accidents can result in devastating injuries and loss of life.
Negligent Hiring Practices
Trucking companies have a responsibility to thoroughly vet and hire qualified drivers. Negligent hiring practices can lead to putting inexperienced or unsafe drivers behind the wheel. Imagine a scenario where a trucking company fails to conduct proper background checks on potential drivers. They hire an individual with a history of reckless driving, accidents, and traffic violations. This driver might continue their unsafe behaviors, eventually causing an accident due to their poor decision-making and lack of driving skills.
Following other vehicles too closely, or tailgating, is a dangerous behavior that can lead to rear-end collisions. When a truck driver tailgates another vehicle, they leave themselves very little room to react if the vehicle in front slows down suddenly. This lack of reaction time can result in the truck colliding with the vehicle ahead. For instance, a truck driver who is tailgating a passenger car might not be able to stop in time when the car’s driver hits the brakes unexpectedly. This can lead to a collision that causes damage to both vehicles and potentially injuries to the occupants.
Illegal Left Turns and Improper Lane Changes
Making illegal left turns and sudden lane changes without signaling are risky behaviors that can lead to accidents involving trucks. Imagine a scenario where a truck driver attempts an illegal left turn at an intersection where such a maneuver is prohibited. In doing so, they cut off an oncoming vehicle that had the right of way, leading to a collision. Similarly, improper lane changes without checking blind spots can result in sideswipes or collisions with other vehicles, especially when the truck driver fails to notice a vehicle in their blind spot.
Time Limit to File a Truck Accident Lawsuit in Dallas
Time limits to file specific types of lawsuits are set forth by states’ statutes of limitations. Under Tex. Civ. Prac & Rem. Code § 16.003, you will typically have two years from the date of your crash to bring your potential truck accident lawsuit to court. If you do not file your case on time, then you may miss your opportunity to recover payment for your injuries.
Even though you may have up to two years to file your truck accident case, you should begin building your claim as soon as possible after your accident. The longer you wait to begin working on your case, the more difficult it may become to gather pertinent evidence. For instance, eyewitnesses can forget crucial details and important documents can become lost. The more quickly you get in touch with our law firm, the more efficiently our team can gather the information we need to win your case.
Common Injuries Suffered by Victims of Truck Accidents in Dallas
Truck accidents have a high propensity to cause severe harm. For instance, the following are all common injuries suffered by victims of such accidents in Dallas:
Broken bones, also known as fractures, are common injuries suffered by victims of truck accidents. These injuries occur when the force of the collision exerts enough pressure on the bones to cause them to break or crack. For instance, a victim might experience a broken arm or leg if they strike a hard object inside of their vehicle during their collision.
Treatment for broken bones can involve casting, splinting, or in more severe cases, surgical intervention to realign and stabilize the bone. Recovery time varies depending on the severity of the fracture and the individual’s overall health.
Soft Tissue Injuries
Soft tissue injuries refer to damage to muscles, ligaments, tendons, and other connective tissues in the body. Whiplash is a common soft tissue injury that can result from a truck accident. It occurs when the force of impact causes the head and neck to jerk suddenly, straining the soft tissues in the neck.
Treatment for soft tissue injuries often involves rest, physical therapy, and sometimes pain management techniques to alleviate discomfort.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Truck accidents can lead to severe spinal cord injuries, which can result in paralysis or loss of sensation below the injury site. These injuries are highly debilitating and can produce significant impacts on the quality of victims’ lives.
Treatment for spinal cord injuries typically involves emergency medical care to stabilize the spine, followed by rehabilitation and physical therapy to regain mobility and function. However, the effects of spinal cord injuries can be long-lasting and may require ongoing medical attention.
Internal injuries occur when the organs within the body sustain damage due to the impact of the truck accident. For example, a victim might experience internal bleeding or damage to organs such as the liver or spleen as a result of the collision. Internal injuries can be life-threatening and require immediate medical attention. Treatment for internal injuries often involves surgery to repair the damaged organs and stop internal bleeding.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injuries result from a blow to the head or a sudden jolt that affects brain function. For example, in a truck accident, a victim may suffer such an injury when they hit their head against the steering wheel or windshield. Traumatic brain injuries can vary in severity from mild concussions to more severe injuries that produce significant cognitive impairments.
Treatment for traumatic brain injuries can involve rest, rehabilitation, and sometimes surgery to alleviate pressure on the brain. Fortunately, if you suffered such an injury because of a truck accident, then our team can help locate the best doctors for you.
Truck accidents often lead to burns if vehicles catch fire upon impact. However, victims may also suffer burns because they contact hot metals, hot liquids, or dangerous chemicals during their collisions.
Burns can range from minor to severe, and victims might suffer from first-degree, second-degree, or third-degree burns. Treatment for burns involves cleaning the wound, applying dressings, and sometimes skin grafting for more severe burns. Long-term care may involve scar management and physical therapy.
Scarring and Disfigurement
Severe truck accidents can result in scarring and disfigurement, especially if victims sustain injuries requiring surgical intervention. For instance, a victim involved in a fiery truck collision might suffer burns that lead to significant scarring. Treatment for scarring and disfigurement can include plastic surgery, scar revision procedures, and therapies to improve the appearance of scars. Thankfully, the cost of these operations can be included in victims’ claims against at-fault parties.
Finally, a truck accident can lead to various psychological injuries, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, and anxiety. Witnessing or experiencing a traumatic event like a truck accident can have lasting effects on a victim’s mental well-being. Treatment for psychological injuries may involve therapy, counseling, and medication to address symptoms and help victims cope with their emotional trauma.
Evaluating Settlement Offers in Dallas Truck Accident Cases
If you file a truck accident lawsuit, then the defendant will likely attempt to reach a settlement agreement before going to trial. If you accept a defendant’s settlement offer, then they will pay you a certain sum of damages in exchange for the dismissal of your case. There are some advantages to settling before trial. For instance, by settling early, you may save on trial costs and acquire payment sooner.
However, defendants in truck accident cases often attempt to settle their cases for less than they are worth. If an adequate settlement offer is not presented, then you will have to go to trial to obtain the monetary damages you deserve. Thankfully, our legal team can provide thorough guidance and support when evaluating settlement offers in your case.
Dallas 18-Wheeler Accident Lawyer
18-Wheelers, also known as semi-trucks or tractor-trailers, are large commercial vehicles consisting of a tractor unit (the front part with the engine) and a trailer (the back part for cargo). These vehicles are named “18-wheelers” because they typically have 18 wheels in total.
18-wheeler accidents are especially dangerous as a result of their substantial size and weight, often weighing up to 80,000 pounds when fully loaded. The sheer mass of these trucks, coupled with the momentum they carry, means that collisions involving 18-wheelers can cause catastrophic damage and severe injuries. The force of impact in such accidents can lead to devastating consequences for occupants of smaller vehicles involved, as well as significant property damage and traffic disruptions. Factors like longer braking distances and wider turning radii also contribute to the heightened risk posed by these accidents on the road.
Thankfully, if you were injured because of an accident involving an 18-wheeler, then our legal team will help you identify the appropriate path to financial compensation.
Types of Evidence Used to Prove Fault for Truck Accidents in Dallas
In order to recover monetary damages in a truck accident case, you must be able to prove that your crash happened as the result of the defendant’s careless or intentional behavior. There are several different types of evidence that may be presented to accomplish this task. For example, any of the following may be utilized in your case:
Eyewitness testimony plays a crucial role in proving fault for truck accidents in Dallas. Eyewitnesses are individuals who were present at the scene of the accident and can provide firsthand accounts of what transpired. Their statements can help establish the sequence of events leading up to the accident, the behavior of the involved parties, and the conditions on the road. For example, if an eyewitness observed a truck driver running a red light and colliding with another vehicle, their testimony can provide valuable insight into the driver’s actions and the events that led to the collision. Eyewitness testimony can serve as persuasive evidence in court, helping to establish fault by corroborating or challenging the accounts of the parties involved.
Expert Witness Testimony
Expert witness testimony involves the input of professionals with specialized knowledge relevant to the circumstances of the truck accident. These experts can include accident reconstruction specialists, mechanical engineers, medical professionals, and others with expertise in various fields. Their testimony can help the court and the jury understand complex aspects of the accident, such as the physics of the collision, the mechanical condition of the vehicles involved, the impact on the victims, and the potential role of negligence. For instance, an accident reconstruction expert can analyze factors such as vehicle speed, road conditions, and driver behavior to determine if a truck driver’s actions align with safe driving practices. Expert witness testimony can provide a strong foundation for establishing fault based on technical analysis and professional judgment.
Accident reports are official documents generated by law enforcement officers who respond to the scene of an accident. These reports typically include details about the accident, such as the location, date, time, vehicles involved, weather conditions, and a description of what happened. Accident reports can provide an objective account of the incident and can be used as evidence to support or challenge the narratives presented by the parties involved. For instance, if an accident report indicates that a truck driver was cited for reckless driving or disobeying traffic signals, this information can be used to demonstrate the driver’s negligence and establish fault.
Physical Evidence from the Scene
Physical evidence collected from the scene of the truck accident can be crucial in determining fault. This evidence can include skid marks, debris, vehicle damage, and any other traces left behind as a result of the collision. For example, the pattern and length of skid marks can offer insights into vehicle speeds and the point of impact. This physical evidence can be analyzed to reconstruct the events leading up to the accident and help establish fault by providing a tangible representation of the sequence of events.
Photographic Evidence from the Scene
Photographs taken at the scene of the truck accident can visually capture the aftermath and provide important visual context for understanding the accident’s dynamics. Photographs can document vehicle positions, road conditions, traffic signals, and any relevant signage. For instance, if photographs show a truck driver’s failure to stop at a red light, this visual evidence can support claims of negligence and fault. Photographs can also help preserve important details that might fade from memory over time, ensuring an accurate representation of the scene for legal proceedings.
In some cases, surveillance footage from cameras located near the accident scene can provide clear and unbiased evidence of what transpired. Surveillance footage can capture the accident from multiple angles and provide a comprehensive view of the events leading up to the collision. For example, if a nearby traffic camera recorded a truck driver’s reckless behavior just moments before a collision, this footage can be instrumental in establishing fault by showing the driver’s actions and their impact on the accident.
Victims’ Personal Recollections
The personal recollections of individuals involved in the accident, including drivers, passengers, and pedestrians, can also contribute to understanding fault. Their accounts of what they experienced and observed can provide valuable insights into the actions of the parties involved. For instance, if a passenger in a car describes the truck driver as being visibly distracted by their phone moments before the accident, this firsthand account can help establish negligence and fault. While personal recollections may be subjective, they can still provide essential information about the events that unfolded and contribute to the overall understanding of the accident.
Call Our Truck Accident Lawyers Today for Help with Your Case in Dallas
Get help from our experienced truck accident lawyers by calling The Queenan Law Firm, P.C. today at (817) 476-1797.