Dallas Truck Accident Lawyers
For more than 40 years, the Turley Law Firm has been a dedicated source of legal support and compassionate advocacy for injured people. Due to the size of the vehicles involved, some of the most catastrophic auto injury cases our Dallas lawyers see originate from truck accidents.
If you or a family member has been injured in a collision with an 18-wheeler, call the Turley Law Firm today at (214) 691-4025 to begin building your truck accident case. Our experienced Dallas truck accident attorneys accept tractor-trailer claims from in and around Dallas as well as roads throughout Texas, the Southwestern region, and areas across the country.
Common Causes of Dallas Truck Accidents
Big rigs require a great deal of diligence to drive and maintenance to stay on the road safely. Unfortunately, due to truck driver negligence and other causes, this doesn’t always happen – and the consequences can be dire.
Our Dallas Truck Accident Lawyers have extensive experience pursuing truck accident claims stemming from:
- Aggressive driving: Aggressive tailgating, deliberate obstruction and rude gestures all constitute aggressive driving. Other forms of aggressive driving can include excessive speed, disregard of traffic controls, failure to signal or yield and frequent or unsafe lane changes.
- Excess weight or improperly secured loads: There are specific rules and regulations that specify the protocol for loading and securing cargo. Regardless of who loads the truck, drivers must inspect prior to departure and periodically during transport. Typically, improperly loaded trucks haul cargo that is overloaded, poorly secured or unbalanced.
- Improper truck maintenance: Under federal law, truck drivers are required to perform a specific set of safety and equipment checks each time they take to the road, even after short breaks. Failure to maintain the cab, trailer, tires or hydraulic brakes of a tractor-trailer rig can have devastating results.
- Truck driver fatigue: Federal regulations place stern restrictions on the amount of hours drivers are allowed to work between rest cycles. However, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) still finds that 13 percent of all commercial truck accidents result from operator fatigue.
- Substance abuse: Driving on drugs or alcohol impairs reaction time, motor skills and judgment. However, fighting fatigue with stimulants is fairly commonplace in the truck driving community. A study by the Center for Substance Abuse Prevention (CSAP) found that 17 out of 20 truckers say they can easily get meth at truck stops.
- Insufficient driver training: Every licensed truck driver must pass examinations of driving skill, industry rules and regulated safety precautions. However, every year, inexperienced drivers take to the roads without necessary training. It is the responsibility of employers to ensure drivers are trained, competent and follow all necessary protocols.
- Defective Vehicle: Not all crashes result from negligent drivers or trucking company practices. Sometimes a vehicle or a specific part is insufficiently safe, endangering the driver, passengers and other people on the road. These defects can include tire blowouts, brake failure, faulty electrical systems or acceleration issues.
These issues can occur in any industry reliant on semi trucks for transporting goods. In Texas, Oklahoma, and other petroleum-producing states, serious truck accidents often occur because of unsafe driver behavior and poor training in the handling of oil field trucks.
Common Dallas Truck Accident Injuries
Accidents involving large trucks are among the most serious and most deadly in the United States. When the driver of a 10,000-pound vehicle engages in dangerous driving habits, every vehicle, driver and passenger sharing the road is in peril. Injuries from truck accidents range from minor cuts and bruises to catastrophic, life-changing injuries and even death. Common truck accident injuries include:
- Pinched nerve: Abrupt movement and force placed on the body during a truck accident can place excess pressure upon a nerve, pinching it. This can result in uncomfortable inflammation and disrupted functionality of the nerve. Symptoms of a pinched nerve include numbness, pain, tingling and muscle weakness or twitching.
- Fracture: When excessive force is applied to bone, it can crack or break. Often times, fractures are treated with casts or splints to realign the bone. In some cases, fractures are more complicated and require surgery and rehabilitation. Depending on the severity of the injury, victims may be incapacitated for weeks or months, unable to work.
- Amputation: The loss of a limb can have a profound physical and mental impact on a person’s life. An amputee may be unable to perform occupational duties or even accomplish the small and necessary tasks of daily life. These sudden shifts in self-reliance and self-image can result in deep depression and grief.
- Paralysis: Truck accidents can cause serious spinal cord injuries that sometimes result in paralysis. Depending on the severity and type of paralysis, a victim may be impaired temporarily or permanently. Treatment and care of paralyzed individuals may involve surgeries, nursing care and intense physical, occupational or speech therapies.
- Brain injury: Brain injuries can result in cognitive issues such as headache, memory loss, attention deficits, difficult thinking, mood swings and frustration. More severe cases of traumatic brain injury can cause impaired function of limbs, abnormal speech, emotional problems and even states of comatose.
- Death: The sudden loss of a loved is one of the most devastating experiences anyone can endure. Cherished personal connections are destroyed, families are left emotionally broken and lacking crucial income while unbudgeted medical, funeral and burial costs rise. In addition to loss of companionship, guidance and income, surviving loved ones often require ongoing therapy to cope with the tragedy.
Damages in a Dallas Truck Accident Case
When you reach out to the Turley Law Firm, you and your family will have dedicated legal support on your side. Our Dallas truck accident lawyers have access to expert witnesses and other legal resources to hold the truck driver, his employer, and other negligent parties responsible.
During the course of your case we will investigate all avenues for maximizing the compensation you could recover for damages such as:
- Medical costs: When calculating the potential value of a claim, the cost of medical care is one of the most important elements we examine. In addition to your current medical bills, we take careful consideration of your future medical expenses. Proving future costs that may endure a lifetime requires our substantial personal injury experience and the use of qualified experts.
- Loss of income: If your injuries or rehabilitation inhibit your ability to work, causing you to lose income, you have the right to compensation. If the injury is severe enough that you can no longer perform your occupational duties, you can sue for loss of future earnings. If the truck accident results in death, a family member can sue on behalf of the deceased for potentially lost income, based on the work-life expectancy of the victim.
- Property damage: Vehicle damage accounts for the majority of property damage awards. In addition to the vehicle itself, you may be entitled to compensation for valuable materials that were also damaged in the crash. Property damage is based on the value of the property before the accident, not replacement value.
- Pain and suffering: This is one of the most difficult elements to prove in a truck accident case, because no one truly knows your pain but you. However, pain can be evidenced by the length and intensity of your therapy and recovery as well as your pain medication use and lifestyle adjustments. It is critical that every aspect of your life that was affected by your accident is proven through evidence and witness testimony.
- Mental anguish and emotional distress: These damages are often confused with pain and suffering, but they are not the same. Following an accident, it is very common for victims to feel shock, fear, grief, anxiety, embarrassment and shame. Different states have specific qualifications for mental anguish and emotional distress claims, so the location of your accident and the recommendations of your attorney are key factors.
- End of life expenses: In the unfortunate event that a wrongful death results from a truck accident, family members may be able to gain compensation for lost future income, funeral and burial costs, loss of guidance and companionship and other costs related to medical care and treatment.
- Punitive damages: These damages are not based on specific injuries and subsequent medical bills or property damage. Punitive damages are a way to punish the defendant for gross negligence or intentional conduct that led to the injuries.
Federal Regulations in Truck Accident Cases
Claims involving tractor-trailers and other commercial vehicle accidents are more complicated than typical car accident cases. The trucking industry is governed by a number of federal regulations, and any type of large corporation will have a dedicated legal team protecting its interests in the event of a lawsuit.
Successful truck accident cases require an acute understanding of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations and how to effectively use them at trial. The regulations apply to all employers, employees and commercial motor vehicles for hire that transport property or passengers in interstate commerce, weighing 10,000 pounds or more.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations comprehensively cover several aspects of commercial trucking practices, including:
- Controlled substances and alcohol use and testing
- Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) standards, requirements and penalties
- Compliance with CDL program
- Qualifications of drivers
- Parts and accessories for safe operation
- Hours of service for drivers
- Inspection, repair and maintenance
- Transportation of hazardous materials, driving and parking rules
- Employee safety and health standards
Why Choose the Turley Law Firm for your Dallas Truck Accident Case?
The experienced Dallas truck accident attorneys at the Turley Law Firm have been successfully helping truck accident victims fight for the justice and compensation they deserve for more than four decades. We understand the complexities of these cases and the turmoil they can inflict on the lives of victims.
The legal team at the Turley Law Firm will conduct a full investigation into your truck accident case to determine what caused the collision. We will carefully examine:
- The scene of the accident
- The driver’s personnel file
- Post-crash reports by police and other parties
- Eyewitness testimony at the scene
In some cases the trucking company itself could have contributed to the accident. Depending on the circumstances, we will take action on your behalf against the negligent driver and his/her employer, too.
Our attorneys are distinguished not just by experience but by a compassion for people who have been hurt by circumstances beyond their control. Please call the Turley Law Firm at (214) 691-4025 today to schedule a free truck accident consultation at our office in Dallas.