If you or someone you love has been injured in trucking accidents, you may be entitled to compensation. Orlando truck accidents can be catastrophic and often have life-changing consequences. An Orlando truck accident lawyer at The Law Place can help you achieve justice by helping you file your truck accident claim.
In accident cases where a trucking company is at fault, recovering compensation can be challenging. This is because trucking companies usually have strong legal teams willing to defend them. Seeking reputable and reliable legal representation is, therefore, essential. Our Orlando truck accident attorneys are not afraid of these large trucking companies. We will not hesitate to file a lawsuit against them if it is in your best interest.
To find out more about how our law firm can help you, contact us today to schedule a free legal consultation. Call us.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
Truck accidents can occur for a variety of reasons in Orlando. Regardless of whether you were a truck driver, pedestrian, motorcyclist, or car driver, you may be able to recover compensation by filing truck accident claims. Our attorneys have helped countless clients with their truck accident claims. From our experience, we have listed some of the most common causes of truck accidents below.
Driver fatigue is also referred to as drowsy driving. Most drivers of commercial vehicles face strict deadlines and are forced to work long hours. Driving for such long hours results in truck drivers feeling fatigued.
When truck drivers fall asleep behind the wheel, they lose control of their vehicles. Losing control of any large trucks, whether they are commercial trucks, semi-trucks, or tractor-trailer trucks, can be deadly. Not only is the truck driver at risk, but so are passenger cars and other road users.
If an Orlando truck accident lawyer can prove that a trucking company was forcing truck drivers to work unreasonable hours, they can be sued.
All motor vehicles require regular maintenance to operate safely and correctly. However, this is even more important with commercial trucks. This is because commercial trucks travel hundreds of kilometers nearly every day. Therefore, they are more likely to encounter issues and require regular maintenance.
Some examples of truck parts that are likely to become faulty and increase the chance of accidents include flat tires, worn-out brakes, and broken lights.
Sometimes a negligent truck driver can be at fault for the poor maintenance of a vehicle. However, more often than not, trucking companies can be held liable for failing to regularly maintain their vehicles. It is not uncommon for companies to avoid maintenance checks to save money.
Lack of Truck Driver Training
All commercial truck drivers are required to complete several training sessions and hours before they can drive a tractor-trailer truck. Sadly, not all truck drivers take it upon themselves to complete this training before taking to the road. If an Orlando truck driver hasn’t learned how to operate their vehicle in the rain, for example, they pose a great risk of causing a tractor-trailer accident.
Speeding refers to when truck drivers operate their vehicles over the legal speed limit or when they drive too quickly for the conditions. Unfortunately, many drivers feel the pressure to speed to meet their strict deadlines. Speeding trucks are far more dangerous than passenger vehicles that speed. This is because they require 20% to 40% more stopping distance than an average passenger vehicle to come to a complete stop.
Truck accidents can occur when drivers speed because the time it takes a driver to perceive a hazard and react to it is reduced.
The sole purpose of trucks is to carry cargo. When this cargo hasn’t been secured properly, it can shift around during transportation. Shifting cargo is dangerous because it can unbalance a truck and make it difficult to control. In most trucking accidents involving unsecured cargo, trucks will tip over due to the imbalance of weight.
Driving under the Influence (DUI)
In Orlando, driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol and/ or drugs is a major criminal offense. These crimes are punished harshly because driving while intoxicated is extremely dangerous. A commercial vehicle driver will face harsher regulations than the average road user. For example, it is illegal for truck drivers to operate their vehicles if their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is at .02% or above. Whereas passenger vehicle drivers can only be arrested if their BAC is .08% or above.
Driving while impaired is dangerous because it slows down reaction times and results in people making irrational decisions. It is important to be aware that prescriptions and over-the-counter medication can also cause drivers to become drowsy and impaired.
Distracted driving is becoming more common in Orlando and is causing hundreds of traffic accidents every single year. Long-haul drivers of tractor-trailer trucks are far more likely to become distracted than the average driver. This is because they will spend hours alone in their cabs and will try and find ways of entertaining themselves. For example, they may text on a cell phone, browse the internet, online shop, or play with their navigation systems. It is also easy for drivers to become distracted by music and food.
This is a leading truck accident cause. A distracted driver can cause a truck accident because they fail to pay full attention to the road and their surroundings. It is easy for them to miss hazards and other road users.
If you’ve been injured in a pedestrian accident due to someone else’s distracted driving, don’t face the legal challenges alone. Our Orlando pedestrian accident lawyers are here to fight for your rights and help you seek the compensation you deserve. Contact us today for expert legal assistance and take the first step towards justice.
Common Injuries Suffered in Truck Accidents
Unfortunately, most truck accidents will result in victims suffering severe injuries. The large size and weight of these vehicles make Florida truck accidents deadly. Some of the most common injuries suffered in these accidents include:
- Spinal cord injuries.
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI).
- Head injuries.
- Neck injuries.
- Back injuries.
- Broken bones.
- Internal bleeding.
- Internal organ damage.
Regardless of whether you have suffered minor or severe injuries in an Orlando truck accident, a personal injury lawyer at The Law Place can help you receive the compensation you deserve. Your accident lawyer will understand that no amount of money could ever remove your suffering from such a traumatic experience. Compensation, however, can relieve you from financial stresses and burdens caused by medical expenses. It can also help aid you with your rest and rehabilitation.
The Differences Between a Truck Accident and a Car Accident
In Orlando, there are many ways in which truck accidents differ from car accidents. First of all, most trucks are commercially owned compared to privately-owned car passenger vehicles. A trucking company is typically responsible for its fleet of vehicles and drivers. This difference in ownership can complicate accident claims and the process of recovering compensation.
A trucking company will generally have higher insurance limits than an average car insurance policyholder. If a car driver wishes to file a truck accident case against a trucking company, not only will they have to deal with commercial insurance adjusters, but also the company’s lawyers. This is why we strongly recommend that Orlando truck accident victims seek legal representation from a truck accident lawyer.
Furthermore, laws and regulations differ when it comes to truck accidents. The trucking industry has to face both federal regulations and state trucking laws. It can be tricky navigating all these laws.
Federal Laws Regarding Commercial Motor Vehicles
It is the role of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to oversee the trucking industry. They are involved in the passing of federal laws that all truck drivers are required to comply with. Some of these laws have been listed below.
Hours of Service
Laws regarding how many hours truck drivers can safely operate their vehicles were introduced to prevent truck accidents caused by driver fatigue. The regulations state that drivers can only drive their trucks for 11 hours if they are working a 14-hour workday. It is then required that drivers take at least 10 hours off work to sleep and rest.
All commercial truck drivers are required to log their driving hours electronically. This will produce a paper trail. These logs are frequently checked by federal investigators to ensure that drivers are not illegally driving for longer than they should.
Commercial Truck Training
There is a requirement for all commercial truck drivers to obtain and carry a Commerical Driver’s Licence (CDL). They will need to prove their skills and knowledge before they can receive one of these licenses. For trucks required to transport hazardous cargo, drivers are required to undertake additional tests to secure their licenses.
Alcohol and Drug Intoxication
Truck drivers cannot operate their vehicles if they have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .02% or above. They are also banned from carrying alcohol aboard their vehicles unless it is part of their cargo. These drivers are frequently required to undergo random testing to ensure their sobriety.
To drive a large truck for several hours, drivers are required to meet a certain level of physical fitness and strength. Completing physical exams every two years is part of the job. If these exams suggest that a driver is not healthy enough to complete their job safely, their CDL can be taken away.
Unsecured cargo is a leading truck accident cause. Therefore, all commercial drivers must learn how to properly and securely load cargo. There are procedures for tieing down cargo that they must be made aware of.
State Laws Regarding Commercial Motor Vehicles
Not only are truck drivers subjected to federal regulations, but they are also subjected to laws created by Florida. Some of the regulations implemented for truck drivers by the state of Florida include:
- A driver is required to carry valid registration and tag at all times. They will also need to present a valid state or Department of Transportation number on their truck.
- A fuel decal is required for all vehicles that weigh 26,000 pounds or more, operate on the interstate, and/ or have three or more axles.
- A truck must be properly maintained and be operated in a safe, working order.
- A truck must weigh no more than 80,000 pounds. It must also not be any taller than 13’6″. Any truck that exceeds these limits is subject to fines and penalties. Truck drivers may also be forced to offload some of their cargo if they wish to proceed.
How to Act Following a Truck Accident
We hope that you are never unlucky enough to be involved in an Orlando truck accident. If you are, there are a few things you should do to protect your legal rights and financial health. Below we have listed some advice.
First of all, you should remain as calm as possible. If your body has been heavily impacted, you may have suffered spinal cord injuries. By moving, you risk making your injuries worse. You should remain as still as you can while you await help.
If you have not suffered a huge impact, you should remain calm. We understand that a truck accident can be traumatic and your adrenaline will be running high, but ensuring your safety and the safety of those around you is important.
To protect your safety, you should turn your hazard lights on. We also advise that you remain in your seat with your seatbelt on until it is safe to leave your vehicle.
You must call for emergency services if no one else has already done so. Orlando truck accidents will likely cause a great amount of damage. It is therefore a legal requirement to report the accident scene to law enforcement. By dialing 9-1-1, you can also request for paramedics to attend the scene.
Many people put off calling for emergency medical treatment because they fear medical expenses. You should not have to worry. If you have been injured, you must receive the necessary treatment. An Orlando truck accident lawyer can help you claim back these costs from your insurance company at a later date.
Seek Medical Treatment
While you await emergency services, you should examine your injuries and try to address them as best as you can. This is not easy and you should only attempt this if you are well enough to do so. For example, if you have received a cut or laceration, you should try your best to stanch the blood flow.
We recommend that all truck accident victims get checked over by a medical professional. Some injuries are not visible. Internal bleeding and organ damage can be life-threatening if left undetected.
One of the best things you can do following a truck accident is gather evidence. If you are well enough to do so, you should document the accident scene. This involves taking photos and videos, gathering contact information of witnesses, and gaining crucial information about the truck driver. If you have collided with a truck, you should find out the driver’s employer, the truck’s license plate number, and more.
The more evidence you can gather, the stronger your truck accident lawsuit will be. An Orlando truck accident attorney can examine this evidence to determine how much compensation you are entitled to.
Don’t Admit Fault
It is not uncommon for people to panic after being involved in a truck accident. However, you must remain calm for the sake of your personal injury claim. Anything you do say following an accident can be held against you. Therefore, admitting fault, apologizing, and giving unprepared statements are some of the worst things you can do. It is difficult to achieve a fair settlement once there is proof that you admitted fault.
We strongly advise that you contact a reputable truck accident attorney before making a statement. An attorney can advise you on how to act and what to say to protect your legal rights.
Should I Call the Police After an Orlando Truck Accident?
In minor truck accidents with minimal damage, the presence of police may not be necessary. However, most truck accident scenes will require the presence of police. If vehicles have been damaged and people have been injured, you should call the police. The police will be required to organize the accident scene and clear the road. They will also file a police report which will be vital to future compensation claims and lawsuits.
If the police do not respond to your truck accident, you are legally required to file a report of your accident. Florida Statute 316.066 states that a crash report must be completed and submitted within 10 days of a completed investigation. By failing to submit a report, you may face legal repercussions.
How to Claim for an Orlando Truck Accident in a No-Fault State
The state of Florida is a no-fault state when it comes to traffic accidents, including truck accidents. This means that regardless of who is at fault for an accident, the first place people turn to for compensation is their own Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance policy. To register a vehicle in Florida, a minimum PIP coverage of $10,000 is required.
However, it is not uncommon for damages in truck accidents to exceed a person’s PIP coverage. In accidents that have caused permanent disabilities and/ or severe injuries, victims can file third-party claims and personal injury lawsuits. Victims of major truck accident cases should contact reputable law firms. These cases can be worth thousands, even millions, of dollars. For the best chance a victim has of recovering a fair settlement, they need an experienced attorney backing their case.
How Can an Orlando Truck Accident Lawyer Help Me?
An Orlando truck accident lawyer can help you in a variety of ways. The main reason why a person will hire a lawyer is for help to recover compensation and file a lawsuit. A lawyer will examine and investigate accident cases to determine how much compensation their client is entitled to. They will also represent their client in court and handle all of the necessary legal negotiations and paperwork.
Although, there is so much more a lawyer can do you for. They can be a hugely supportive figure in your life. Suffering a truck accident is very traumatic and you may be facing a range of stresses. You may have lost a loved one, lost wages, suffered severe injuries, and are suffering with your mental health. We are here for you. Seeking compensation after such a traumatic experience can bring you additional, unnecessary stress. Your lawyer will relieve you from all of this stress so you can focus on your rest and recovery. They can guide you through the whole process and be a figure of reassurance. Our legal team only acts with the interests of our clients at heart.
Do I Need to Hire Orlando Truck Accident Lawyers?
You don’t need to hire a lawyer after a truck accident as you have the right to represent your case. If you want to, you can handle the negotiations with insurance companies alone and represent your case in the courtroom.
However, we strongly advise against this. Although you can recover compensation by yourself, you will likely not receive the full amount of what you are entitled to. There are a few reasons for this. First of all insurance companies will hand you a lowball offer in hopes that you accept. Insurance companies strive to make a profit and handing out as little money as possible is their goal.
An experienced lawyer will investigate your case to determine a fair financial figure that you are entitled to. They will battle with your insurance company to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. Furthermore, the backing of a reputable lawyer will hugely strengthen your case. Your claims will be taken more seriously in negotiations with insurance companies and the courtroom.
How Much do Orlando Truck Accident Lawyers Cost?
Hiring a truck accident lawyer couldn’t be more affordable. Many people in Orlando wrongly assume that seeking legal representation is too expensive for the average person. It could not be easier to hire a lawyer. At The Law Place, our lawyers work on a contingency fee basis. This simply means that you do not have to face any upfront costs and you only have to pay legal fees if your lawyer helps you achieve compensation. This fee structure is more commonly referred to as a no-win-no-fee basis. You, therefore, have nothing to lose by hiring a lawyer.
Our law firm abides by all the rules and regulations produced by the Florida Bar Association. The Florida Bar monitors the work of all law firms in the state. You can feel rest assured that you are dealing with a reputable law firm.
When to Contact an Orlando Truck Accident Lawyer
You should contact a truck accident lawyer as soon as possible after suffering a truck accident in Florida. This is because the law does not grant you infinite time to file compensation claims and lawsuits. According to Florida’s statute of limitations, injury victims only have two years to file personal injury claims.
Although this may seem like plenty of time, the years can pass very quickly. If you fail to claim in time, your case will be barred and it is unlikely that you will be able to recover compensation.
Furthermore, it is important to act quickly to ensure that you can gather relevant and valid evidence. The legitimacy of certain forms of evidence weakens as time passes and this can negatively impact your personal injury lawsuit. For example, witness testimonies are weakened as there is larger scope for them to forget or skew certain aspects of your accident. In addition, surveillance footage is frequently wiped and this footage could be hugely beneficial to your case.
How Much Money Could I Achieve for My Truck Accident Injuries?
The amount of compensation that you could achieve following your accident will depend on several factors. These include:
- The severity of your injuries.
- The amount of property damage.
- Whether you have lost wages.
- Whether your earning capacity has been impacted.
- The impact the accident has had on your mental health.
- Where fault lies.
There is no such thing as an average truck accident settlement. One of our attorneys at The Law Place will be able to give you a rough estimation of what your case could be worth in your free consultation using their experience. However, you will receive a more solid understanding of how much compensation you are entitled to when an attorney can investigate your case.
How Long does a Personal Injury Lawsuit Take to Settle?
All personal injury lawsuits are different. Complex lawsuits involving trucking companies will generally take longer to settle than minor injury lawsuits. Many factors can determine the length of a lawsuit. We recommend that you hire a reputable attorney if you wish to have an efficient lawsuit. An attorney will aggressively represent your interests to ensure that you receive the justice you deserve as quickly as possible.
We understand that you may be eager to receive some money as soon as possible, but we won’t hesitate to prolong your case if you are not being offered the compensation you deserve. Your attorney will not stop fighting until you are satisfied with the settlement being offered.
Orlando truck accident lawyer, FAQ
What makes truck accidents different from regular car accidents in Orlando?
Truck accidents often involve larger damages due to the sheer size and weight of commercial vehicles. Additionally, commercial truck accidents may have more complex liability issues, with multiple parties potentially at fault, including the trucking company, driver, or manufacturer.
How is fault determined in an Orlando trucking accident?
Determining fault in a trucking accident often requires extensive investigation. This can involve examining the driver’s logbooks, the vehicle’s maintenance records, and the circumstances of the crash. An experienced truck accident lawyer can help gather and analyze this crucial evidence.
Are there specific regulations governing commercial truck operations in Florida?
Yes, commercial trucks are governed by both state and federal regulations. These regulations cover aspects like driver training, hours of service, vehicle maintenance, and cargo handling. Violations can play a significant role in truck crashes.
What kind of compensation can I expect from Florida truck accident claims?
Compensation in truck accident cases may cover medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, property damage, and other related expenses. Each case is unique, so it’s essential to discuss specifics with a Florida truck accident attorney.
How soon should I contact a lawyer after a truck accident in Orlando?
It’s advisable to contact an attorney as soon as possible after the accident. Early legal intervention can ensure evidence is preserved and can also provide guidance on dealing with insurance companies.
What challenges might I face when filing a claim against a trucking company?
Trucking companies often have robust legal teams and insurance coverage. They may try to downplay their liability or shift the blame. Having an experienced truck accident lawyer on your side can help level the playing field.
How can a Florida truck accident attorney help in my truck accident case?
An attorney can assist in various ways, including gathering evidence, negotiating with insurance companies, understanding the complexities of trucking regulations, and representing you in court if needed.
What are common causes of truck crashes in Orlando?
Common causes include driver fatigue, equipment malfunctions, speeding, overloaded cargo, and inadequate driver training, among others.
Can I file a claim if a loved one died in a truck accident?
Yes, immediate family members can file a wrongful death claim seeking compensation for losses such as funeral expenses, loss of companionship, and more.
Contact The Law Place Today!
Orlando truck accidents are catastrophic and can change lives forever. If you or someone you love has suffered injuries in a truck accident, you owe it to yourself to contact reputable attorneys. With legal help, you will greatly improve the chance you have of recovering the compensation you deserve.
Our team of attorneys at The Law Place has over 75 years of combined experience. We have helped countless clients achieve the justice they are entitled to and we can help you too. Don’t hesitate for another moment. The sooner you act, the better.
To organize your free legal consultation with an Orlando truck accident attorney, call us now at (941)-444-4444.