What to Do if You Get into a Truck Accident on Interstate 20

I-20 in Texas is one of the main arteries of travel.  Cutting straight through Arlington, Dallas, and Fort Worth, I-20 is one of the biggest travel routes in Texas.  The highway connects some of these travel hubs out to the East, runnning all the way to South Carolina.  This means that it is one of the biggest shipping corridors in the South, and sees hundreds of thousands of miles of truck traffic each year.  However, since many long truck hauls are made alongside passenger cars, other drivers are at risk if these tractor-trailers cause an accident.

If you or a loved one was hurt in an accident caused by a large truck, talk to an attorney.  If your crash occurred on I-20, consider taking your case to the Dallas-Fort Worth truck accident attorneys at The Queenan Law Firm, P.C.  Our principal attorney, Kevin Queenan, used to work in the trucking industry, and his firm has handled many high-value truck accident cases on behalf of injured victims.

Dallas-Fort Worth Tractor-Trailer Accident Attorney

Compensation for Truck Accident Cases

If you were injured in a truck accident, you could be entitled to substantial compensation.  When someone else injures you in a car accident, Texas law usually allows you to take them to court.  Instead of going through insurance, you could take the other driver directly to court to seek compensation.  In the case of a truck driver, you may be able to bring their employer trucking company to court as well.  This helps ensure that the wealthy trucking companies can pay for all of your injuries.

If the trucking company or the driver violated trucking regulations, you could be entitled to additional damages.  Trucking regulations are in place to help ensure safe driving and fewer accidents.  To make more money, many trucking companies will ignore regulations, sending overheavy trucks, tired drivers, and unsafe equipment onto the roads.  If this happens, courts may punish trucking companies by awarding you additional damages.

Even without these “punitive” damages, you could be entitled to compensation for your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering.  Any medical bills you face because of the accident should be paid by the trucking company that caused your accident.  That means the costs of emergency medical services, hospital visits, surgical procedures, and physical therapy could all be paid for.  If you missed work because of your injuries or you are unable to return to work, you might be entitled to compensation for those missed paychecks.  This money may even support you into the future if you can no longer work.
Damages for pain and suffering are usually one of the highest areas of compensation.  These damages depend heavily on your personal experience.  However, Texas has no legal limits on how high these damages can go.  A jury may award you very high compensation for your injuries, on top of medical expenses and lost wages.

Truck Accident Dangers

Trucking regulations exist to help keep the trucking industry in line.  These rules typically control how long drivers may work, equipment and maintenance standards, and health standards for truck drivers.  Violating these rules can endanger other drivers on the road, so the government is usually quite strict with these regulations.  Violations may even entitle victims to additional, punitive damages from trucking companies (as mentioned above).

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) writes “Hours of Service” rules to limit how long drivers can work each day.  These rules limit drivers to:

  • No more than 8 hours of driving in a row without a half-hour rest break;
  • No more than 11 hours of driving in one day, followed by 10 hours off-duty;
  • No more than 14 hours on-duty (including breaks), followed by 10 hours off-duty; and
  • No more than 60 hours on-duty in one 7-day period (or 70 hours in an 8-day period), followed by 34 hours off-duty.

Tired driving is as dangerous as drunk driving.  These rules help keep drivers alert and awake on the road.
Drivers must satisfy health requirements and screening to work in the US.  This includes carrying a valid health card as proof that a doctor has cleared the trucker to drive.  Poor hearing, vision, limb use, or even diabetes can prevent truckers from driving.  There are also random and scheduled drug and alcohol tests to weed-out drunk or drugged driving.

Maintenance and equipment requirements help prevent unsafe trucks from entering the roadway.  Trucks must also follow weight limits and loading requirements to help reduce the risk of fishtailing, losing control, or flipping.  These can cause serious pile-ups on the highway.

Call Our Truck Accident Lawyers

The Dallas personal injury attorneys at The Queenan Law Firm represent injured truck accident victims throughout the State of Texas.  If you or a loved one was injured in a car accident on I-20, talk to an attorney right away.  You might be entitled to file a lawsuit to seek compensation that car insurance will not provide.  Call our experienced Texas truck accident lawyers today at (817) 476-1797.