Truck accidents can have catastrophic repercussions on the occupants of passenger vehicles. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), 4,136 people died in collisions with large trucks in 2018 with 16% of the deaths being the truck occupants and 67% being the occupants of the passenger vehicles.
If you suffered injuries or a loved one died because of a truck accident, you can hold the negligent driver responsible. A Lafayette truck accident attorney can fight for your rights and help you get justice and collect compensation.
Causes of Truck Accidents
Often, truck accidents are caused by negligence, either on the part of the driver, the trucking company, or another party. We will help you explore the avenues in your claim that will prove liability. Some of the major causes of truck accidents include:
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), drowsy drivers have a difficult time paying attention to the road and have a slower reaction time. Truck drivers can be on the road for as long as 11 hours at a time, which makes driver fatigue a real possibility.
Improper truck maintenance, particularly for brake systems, is also a known factor in crashes. According to the IIHS, investigators found brake defects in 42% of crash-involved large trucks in a 2012 study. Any vehicle defect in a truck was associated with a 200% increase in crash risk.
Drivers are more susceptible to distracted driving because of how much time they spend behind the wheel. Using their cell phone, eating, using a navigation system, drinking, or even changing the radio can take a driver’s attention off the road long enough to get in an accident.
For a free legal consultation with a Truck Accident lawyer serving Lafayette, call (337) 446-4571
Types of Injuries that Can Occur in Truck Accidents
Crashes involving trucks can result in devastating or even fatal injuries. Some types of injuries that can occur in truck accidents include:
- Spinal cord injuries: Damage to the spinal cord often results in a complete or total loss of mobility or sensation below the site of the injury. These truck accident injuries are often the result of trauma to the back, chest, head, neck, and face.
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI): Motor vehicle crashes are, according to the CDC, responsible for 20% of all TBI-related hospitalizations. These injuries can lead to impairments in movement, emotional functioning, vision or heading, or memory.
- Broken bones: The seriousness of this injury depends on the type of break, such as if the bone breaks through the skin or the bone shatters in the crash.
- Internal bleeding: In some cases, internal bleeding does not become apparent until the condition becomes life-threatening. Trauma to the body in a truck accident can damage the organs, bones, and blood vessels.
Lafayette Truck Accident Lawyer Near Me (337) 446-4571
Laws that Could Impact Your Lafayette Truck Accident Claim
Some laws you should be aware of include Louisiana’s statute of limitations and comparative fault. Per the Louisiana State Legislature, CC §3492, you must file a claim within one year of the date of the accident, or you are, generally, barred from recovering compensation.
This time period is far shorter than the two to five years that most states provide and means you must act shortly after your accident if you intend to file a lawsuit.
Types of Recoverable Damages After a Lafayette Truck Accident Claim
The types of damages you may be able to recover after a Louisiana truck accident will depend on the circumstances of the wreck. Some common types of damages you can recover after a truck accident include:
- Medical costs
- Lost wages
- Future wages, if you have lost your earning potential
- Pain and suffering
- Disfigurement or dismemberment
- Out-of-pocket expenses
If you are a family member pursuing a claim for wrongful death after your loved one passed away from a Lafayette truck accident, you may be entitled to:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Medical costs left to your family
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of benefits and wages previously provided by the deceased
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How Long does it Take to Settle a Truck Accident Claim?
In rare cases, your settlement can be handled fairly quickly. It may take six to 12 months because of the defendant and their insurance company’s cooperation. Because trucking companies have a lot of insurance coverage, it can take longer to agree on a fair and adequate settlement. It’s more likely that your truck accident will be settled within 12 to 24 months.
Who Is Liable in a Truck Accident?
A Lafayette truck accident attorney could look into the facts of your case to determine which parties may be liable. You may be able to sue more than one party for your truck accident injuries. These can include:
- The truck driver
- The trucking company the driver works for
- Their insurance company
- The truck manufacturer
- The company that loaded the truck’s cargo
There is no law limiting the number of parties involved in a truck accident case. The number of individuals involved in litigation partly depends on the number of vehicles involved in the crash.
Call Morris Bart, LLC Today for a Free Consultation
To find out what options you have for recovering damages after your Lafayette truck accident, call the team at the Morris Bart law firm. We have worked on many cases like yours and are proud of the results we achieved.
Learn more about how a Lafayette truck accident lawyer may be able to help by calling our office today for a free consultation. We are ready to help you pick up the pieces and start over after a crash.
Questions?Call (337) 446-4571
to find a Morris Bart office near you.