Clearwater Trucking Accident Lawyer
If you have ever driven on a major Florida road, then you have probably shared the road with a semi-truck. As you drove beside that 18-wheeler, or even pulled next to one at a traffic light, you perhaps observed how large that commercial vehicle was — American tractor-trailers can weigh up to 80,000 pounds; that’s more than 20 cars! And due to their large size, semi-trucks often cause serious, even fatal, consequences when they’re involved in accidents.
After a semi truck accident, there is a lot to consider. The factors that caused the accident are examined. In some cases, accident reconstruction is necessary. If one party is responsible for another’s injuries, then damages are usually also in order. A trusted trucking accident attorney with Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes can see you through your case. We will help you find the compensation you deserve.
How Many Accidents are Caused by Semi Trucks?
According to the most recent IIHS statistics for large trucks, about half a million trucking accidents occur in the U.S. every year, and more than 80% are multiple-vehicle accidents. About 5,000 truck accidents result in death, and in the majority of cases (about 85%), the fatalities aren’t to the truck drivers but rather to passenger vehicle occupants, motorcycle riders, and pedestrians. Fatal truck accidents also are on the rise: the number of deaths from large truck accidents was 31% higher in 2018 than in 2009.
Where do Trucking Accidents Occur?
Are there any roads safe from fatal semi-truck accidents? It does not seem to be the case. Interstates like I-275 are where about one-third of fatal trucking accidents occur, while the majority (about 52%) occur on major city roads and highways, such as Dale Mabry Highway in Tampa or Gulf to Bay Blvd in Clearwater. But even minor roads are where about one in eight truck accident deaths occur. Timing also plays a role: unlike car accidents, fatal semi-truck wrecks are more likely on weekdays than weekends; they also happen the most during the morning, lunchtime, and evening rush hours.
What are the Leading Causes of Trucking Accidents?
Driving a big rig is not like operating a passenger car. Because of their weight, for example, 18 wheelers require 20-40% more stopping distance than passenger vehicles. Bad road conditions, such as wet roads during Florida’s rainy season, can make the stopping distances even worse for trucks.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) studied the leading causes of large truck crashes and found there are a number of contributing factors related to the driver, tractor-trailer, or environment.
- Brake problems
- Tire problems
- Cargo shift
- Poor road conditions
- Bad weather
- Debris on road
- Driving too fast for road conditions
- Unfamiliar with roadway
- Using OTC or illicit drugs or alcohol
- Insufficient surveillance by supervisor
- Work-related pressure
- Illegal maneuver
- Distracted driving
- Following vehicles too closely
Common Truck Accident Injuries Our Attorneys See from Clients
Brain and Head Injuries
A brain injury can occur if a driver or passenger strikes their head with enough force against a solid object inside the vehicle or on the pavement. Brain injuries can affect a person’s ability to go to school, work, or enjoy regular activities. Traumatic brain injuries can also involve lifelong medical costs.
Whiplash and other neck injuries are common in rear-end or t-bone collisions, where a large amount of force comes from an unexpected direction. Unlike some truck accident injuries, neck injuries can’t always be avoided by wearing a seatbelt.
An injury to the spinal cord can result in various degrees of paralysis, such as monoplegia (one arm or leg), paraplegia (both legs), and quadriplegia (all limbs). Even injuries to back muscles may not be permanent but can prevent a person from working for weeks or months.
Cosmetic injuries can be just as life-changing as physical debilitations. Severe cuts from broken glass or debris or broken bones due to a collision with the airbags can create noticeable scars and forever alter a person’s appearance.
Not all injuries are evident from the outside. Sometimes the psychological shock from a large truck accident can be enough to cause post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or other mental conditions that cause pain and suffering.
There are nearly 14 fatalities from semi-truck crashes every day. Given the size of the vehicle involved, the probability of wrongful death from a truck accident is also multiple times higher than from a car crash.
These are just some of the types of personal injury cases that our truck accident attorneys can represent. To find out if you have a case, call us for a consultation.
Truck Accident Claim FAQs
Can I sue for being hit by a semi truck?
Yes but who? Truck driver or company?
How do I file a lawsuit against a trucking company?
Yes but must prove driver is at fault.
What is the average settlement for a trucking accident?
Huge range. Based on liability, property damage, medical expenses, lost wages, pain/suffering.
How long does it take to get a settlement after an accident?
Depends on the case and whether it’s settled in or out of court.
How can I prove my pain and suffering?
Document experience. Keep medical notes/evidence. Be honest.
Do I have to pay medical bills from my settlement?
Yes. Reimbursement for medical bills will likely be part of the settlement.
How much does a trucking injury lawyer charge?
Based on contingency fee percentage paid from the settlement.
Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes (formerly Perenich & Carroll) was founded in 1955. We are exclusively invested in helping personal injury victims — and their loved ones — win compensation and find justice. We approach every case with passion, experience, and dedication, and strive to provide the answers you need, when you need them.
If you are seeking help after a truck accident, please contact us. An experienced trucking accident attorney will see you through your case.