What Type of Vehicle Is Considered a Truck?
In Texas, a truck refers to a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) or a motor vehicle with a gross weight, registered weight, or gross weight rating of more than 26,000 pounds, that is used to transport property, goods, or passengers for business purposes. There are many types of commercial motor vehicles, including:
- Tractor-trailers or 18-wheelers.
- Delivery trucks.
- Flatbed trucks.
- Cement and concrete trucks.
- Dump trucks.
- Logging trucks.
- Oil transport trucks.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, motor vehicle crashes involving large trucks have steadily increased each year since 2019. This increase occurred despite stay-at-home orders and other pandemic-related restrictions. Continue reading to learn more about truck accidents in Dallas, how truck accidents differ from car accidents, and how Godsey Martin, PC can help you with your case.
How Do Truck Accidents Differ From Car Accidents?
Trucks are usually twice the size and thousands of pounds heavier than most passenger vehicles. In addition to the size and weight differences, truck accidents differ from car accidents in the following ways:
Most trucks carry heavy cargo, which adds to the weight of the trucks. Heavier trucks are harder to maneuver and bring to a stop. Certain trucks carry hazardous materials, which can increase the danger to other drivers and pedestrians on the road.
Because of the weight and size of most trucks, accidents involving them can cause severe and life-threatening injuries. These accidents may even result in the death of passengers and pedestrians.
The trucking industry also has its own set of legal requirements. This industry is governed by a complex set of local, state, and federal laws that do not apply to passenger or noncommercial vehicles.
What Are Some Common Causes of Truck Accidents?
Many of the same factors that contribute to car accidents, such as distracted, fatigued, or intoxicated drivers and speeding, can also cause truck accidents. Causes specific to truck accidents include:
- Ignoring traffic regulations.
- Improperly loaded cargo.
- Overweight or overloaded trucks.
- Lack of or improper driver training.
- Improper or poor truck maintenance.
- Truck defects.
What Types of Injuries Are Possible in a Truck Accident?
Due to the size and weight of trucks, many of the injuries common in other vehicle accidents are typically more severe. Many injuries suffered in truck accidents require immediate medical attention. Potential injuries suffered in truck accident cases include:
- Brain, neck, and shoulder injuries.
- Back and spinal cord injuries.
- Broken or fractured bones.
- Loss of limbs or organs.
- Burns, disfigurement, and scarring.
- Internal injuries.
Who May Be Liable in a Truck Accident?
Truck accidents involve multiple parties, in addition to the injured parties. Depending on the circumstances of the accident, the following parties could be liable in a truck accident:
- The driver of the truck.
- The owner of the truck.
- The trucking company.
- Any mechanic or service provider who recently worked on the truck.
- The manufacturer of the truck or parts.
- A third-party shipping company.
What Should You Do After a Truck Accident?
It’s important to know what to do after being involved in a truck accident. Here are the first key steps to take.
The first thing to do after an accident is to get help. Call 911 to send law enforcement and first responders to the scene of the crash. Once authorities arrive, they can complete a police report. Be sure to seek medical attention even if you don’t suspect any injuries.
Exchange Contact Information
Exchange contact and insurance information with everyone involved. Don’t forget to take note of any witnesses. Obtain the name and contact information of the driver’s employer or the trucking company.
Secure any physical evidence from the accident, including photographs of:
- The driver’s license and license plate of parties involved.
- The accident scene, including any traffic signs and tire or track marks.
- Any damage to your property or vehicle.
- Your injuries and any injuries others with you sustained.
When Should You Hire an Attorney?
Because of the complex nature of the laws governing truck accidents and the two-year statute of limitation of the filing of claims, contact an attorney as soon as possible following your truck accident. You should also consult or hire an attorney before speaking with an insurance company or accepting any settlement.
Having a knowledgeable truck accident attorney by your side will help you prevent any costly mistakes that can negatively affect your claim and determine the best course of action to maximize your compensation.
How Can Godsey Martin, PC Help You After Your Truck Accident?
We understand that each truck accident case is unique and the process of filing a claim is a complex one that may seem overwhelming at first. Our law firm of over 90 knowledgeable attorneys provides you with a dedicated, professional, and personalized experience from the first day you enter our offices.
With our extensive knowledge of Texas personal injury law, Godsey Martin, PC will assist you with every aspect of your truck accident case, including:
- Explaining your legal rights and options.
- Filing your claim with the insurance companies or the court.
- Obtaining necessary evidence for the case.
- Referring you to qualified medical professionals, including doctors and physical therapists.
- Managing all correspondence with insurance companies and their lawyers.
- Negotiating settlements with insurance companies and their lawyers.
- Getting compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other damages associated with the accident.
Contact us today for a free consultation about your truck accident case. There is no upfront cost with us. All our personal injury claims and cases are taken on a contingency fee basis. We do not collect a fee unless you get paid. Call our Dallas office to start your case today!
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Our legal team, located in Dallas and Houston, understands the steps that need to be taken to help accident victims get their life back on track. We will stand by your side throughout the entire legal process, fighting the insurance companies and the negligent driver responsible in order to provide you the money and justice you deserve. Click or call us today to begin your case.