Liability isn’t always clear after truck accidents, and when third parties like the truck driver’s employer get involved, it’s best to have an experienced Pennsylvania truck accident lawyer on your side.
Stark & Stark Attorneys at Law has represented injured parties since 1933. Our firm has the resources and experience to ensure accident victims are paid in full for their injuries.
Don’t go up against a big corporation on your own – call Stark & Stark and let us fight for you.
What to do after a truck accident
If you are involved in a truck accident, follow these steps to protect yourself and your case.
1. Seek medical attention
The most immediate concern after a truck accident is getting medical attention. Many people who are injured in truck accidents do not realize how badly they are hurt until later.
It is important to get checked out by a doctor as soon as possible so that you can get the treatment you need.
2. Call 911
Whether you are injured or not, call 911 right away. The police should come to the scene of the accident and create a report. This report can be used as evidence in your case.
Emergency medical services will also be dispatched to the scene to help anyone who is injured.
3. Talk to witnesses
If there are eyewitnesses to the accident, it is important to at least get their contact information. Do not rely solely on the police report for witness information if you are able to make contact on the scene.
4. Take photos and videos
If you can, take photos and videos of the accident scene. These can be used as evidence in your case. Photos and videos of vehicle damage, vehicle placement, and weather conditions can all be helpful for your Pennsylvania truck accident attorney.
5. Exchange Information
Exchange information with the other drivers involved in the accident. This information can be used to establish liability for the accident.
6. Contact a truck accident lawyer
If you were hurt, it is important to contact an attorney right away. An attorney can help you protect your rights and preserve evidence.
Make sure you file a lawsuit on time
In most cases, you have two years to file a lawsuit after a truck accident.
However, there are some exceptions, so it is important to contact an attorney as soon as possible.
Damages you may be able to recover
Damages can include medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. If you’re unsure of what type of damages you’re eligible to collect, call a Pennsylvania truck accident attorney at Stark & Stark.
We fight the insurance company to get you maximum compensation
Our lawyers have years of experience representing truck accident victims. We know how to get the maximum results for our clients. We work on a contingency fee basis, which means we only get paid if we win your case. This allows us to focus on getting you the best possible outcome.
If you have been injured in a truck accident, let us review your case.
Parties who may be liable for the crash
In most cases, the driver of the truck can be sued. However, there may be other parties who can also be sued, including the trucking company, the manufacturer of the truck, or the driver’s employer.
In some cases, the broker, shipper, receiver, and/or third-party maintenance company may be held liable for a truck accident. Liability depends on the evidence and facts of the case, so it’s in your best interest to hire an attorney who can help determine all potentially liable parties.
Semi-truck “black boxes”: What they are and how they can help your case
Trucking companies use black boxes to monitor their drivers and vehicles. The devices were originally used to track how fast a driver was going, how long they drove, and when they took breaks. They can also be used to help prove fault in a truck accident.
Event data recorders
Event data recorders are the most sophisticated of the three devices commonly called black boxes. They not only track a driver’s behavior, but also record vehicle speed, brake application, and steering wheel angle.
For example, if the truck was traveling at a high speed and lost control when it crashed, information from the event data recorder will reflect this.
Why black boxes are crucial in truck crash cases
The systems that make up a truck’s black box can yield evidence as to who was at fault for the accident. Sometimes, a trucking company can attempt to conceal or destroy this evidence. That way, they don’t have to pay what they should.
If you retain a Pennsylvania truck accident attorney as soon as possible, they’re less likely to get away with these tactics.
Common causes of truck accidents
Trucks are much larger and heavier than cars, and they take longer to stop. When a truck driver is traveling too fast, they may not be able to stop in time for a sudden slowdown or traffic jam. Speeding also makes it easier to lose control of a truck. They could tip the vehicle going around turns too quickly, lose control if they hit a pothole, or skid if they hit the brakes too hard.
Cell phones, laptops, and other electronic devices are a common distraction for drivers. Distractions reduce reaction time, leading to accidents.
Aggressive driving is another leading cause of truck accidents. When a driver is trying to meet a deadline, they may take risks and lose their patience. Common behaviors of aggressive drivers include speeding, tailgating, cutting off other vehicles, and running red lights.
Tired drivers may not be able to react quickly if something goes wrong. They may also fall asleep at the wheel, which can lead to serious accidents. Truck drivers are supposed to adhere to rules regulating how much rest they get and how long they drive, but job pressures can lead them into noncompliance.
Alcohol impairs a driver’s judgment and slows down their reflexes.
Drugs, even prescribed medications taken as directed, can impair a driver’s ability to drive safely.
Truck drivers may also have their cargo overloaded or improperly loaded, which is very dangerous. This makes an 18-wheeler even more difficult to control. The truck could sway from side to side or flip over if the driver makes a sudden turn.
When a truck’s engine fails, the driver may not be able to maintain control. Similarly, when the brakes fail, the truck could easily crash into another vehicle. Mechanical failures can also lead to fires or explosions.
If you were injured by a truck with a potential mechanical failure, contact a Pennsylvania truck accident lawyer today. An attorney can help you protect your rights and get the compensation you deserve.
Common truck accident injuries
When a car is hit by a truck, occupants in the other vehicle frequently hit their heads on the dashboard or windshield.
This can lead to concussions, brain injuries, and skull fractures. These can range from mild to fatal and have long-term symptoms and disabilities.
Back and neck injuries
Back and neck injuries are some of the most common in truck accidents. When a truck crashes into another car, the passengers in the car may hit their head on the windshield or be thrown from the car. This can lead to serious injuries such as sprains, as well as spinal cord and disk injuries.
Spinal cord injuries
There is a wide range of possible outcomes after a spinal cord injury. Truck accident victims who sustain a spinal cord injury may lose function in one or more limbs, or even become quadriplegic.
Internal injuries are especially dangerous since you may not notice or feel them right away. Internal injuries can be very serious and can lead to death.
The risk of internal injury in a truck accident is a key reason why you need to see a doctor right away – even if you think you aren’t injured.
Truck accidents cause broken bones in the arms, legs, and ribs. Some fractures may heal in a matter of weeks, while others may require surgery and take months or years to fully heal.
During any crash, fuel may leak out of a tank and catch on fire. In truck accidents, you not only have more fuel involved, but the truck itself could be hauling flammable materials.
This can lead to serious or fatal burns for everyone involved. Burns can be very painful and can require surgery or cause permanent scarring.
When someone dies in a truck accident, their family suffers the consequences. They lose income and companionship on top of having to pay for final expenses. They may even be left with medical bills from efforts to render emergency treatment prior to their loved one’s passing.
Cost of hiring a Pennsylvania truck accident attorney
Stark & Stark Attorneys at Law offers free consultations to all of our clients. We can review your case and let you know what we can do to help you.
If you choose to work with us, we work on a contingency fee basis. Working on contingency means we only get paid if you are awarded money. This way, you know we only take cases that we’re serious about winning. It also means you don’t have to pay anything while we fight for you.
Our Pennsylvania truck accident lawyers are ready to help
Speaking to a Pennsylvania truck accident attorney as soon as possible won’t cost you. Stark & Stark can provide you with a free consultation and help you understand your legal options.
Truck accidents often result in catastrophic injuries or death. Truck drivers are required to comply with various safety regulations, and when they don’t, you shouldn’t have to pay for it.
If you have been injured in a truck accident, Stark & Stark can help you hold the driver and trucking company responsible for your injuries. Don’t wait, contact Stark & Stark Attorneys at Law today for a free consultation. Call (800) 535-3425 now.