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Semi-Truck Accidents vs. Car Accidents

Semi-Truck Accidents vs. Car Accidents Not all motor vehicle accidents are alike. Depending on what type of accident in which you are involved, different factors and rules can affect the way your case proceeds. This is especially true if your crash involves a commercial truck or vehicle.

These types of cases are very complex and often involve multiple liable parties. They also tend to involve more severe injuries. Whether you are the trucker or the other driver, if you are hurt you really want an attorney with experience handling truck accident claims. Today, we want to take a look at the biggest differences between a collision involving passenger vehicles and one involving an 18-wheeler.

Injuries and damage

One of the differences between semi-truck accidents and car accidents is the amount of damage involved. The size and weight of a semi-truck allows it to cause a substantial amount of impact in an accident, which can result in catastrophic injuries. The damage sustained from passenger car accidents can vary. Some car accidents can cause severe injuries for drivers and passengers, while some car accidents can result in minor injuries.

Insurance policy coverage

Another difference between semi-truck accidents and car accidents are the amounts of insurance policy coverage. Even though both car and truck drivers are required to carry insurance policies, truck drivers must carry a higher amount of coverage. Because semi-trucks can cause greater amounts of damage, the liability coverage for injured passengers is greater. That means that victims of semi-truck accidents are eligible for larger amounts of compensation.

Types of liability

Another key difference between semi-truck accidents and car accidents are the different types of liability. In a car accident, liability is usually straightforward. The driver is typically the only liable party for the accident, and the amount of liability is determined based on how negligent the driver acted. Liability in semi-truck accidents, however, is more difficult to determine. There are other parties that can be held liable for a semi-truck accident.

For example, if the truck driver was employed by a company at the time of the semi-truck accident, their employer can also be held liable for the accident. Trucking companies possess what is known as “vicarious liability.” Vicarious liability is a legal concept that holds one party responsible for the actions of another party. Employers hold vicarious liability for the actions of their employees.

Truck manufacturers can also be held liable for a semi-truck accident. Some semi-truck accidents are caused because the truck contained faulty or defective parts. Even the most responsible, well-trained truck driver cannot avoid an accident when a tire blows out on the highway. When truck manufacturers design defective truck parts, they can bear responsibility for a truck accident.

Available evidence

Another key difference is the type of evidence that can be used to prove liability in a semi-truck or car accident. Even though injured parties in both accidents can use evidence like photos and witness statements, there is additional documentation available in semi-truck accidents. Truck drivers are required by federal law to carry at least six months of log records. These log records provide information such as the type of cargo it is carrying, inspections performed on the truck, and a “black box” containing data like driver actions and truck speed. The information on these records can be valuable for your truck accident case.

Different rules for semi-truck and car drivers

Unlike motorists, there are specific rules that truck drivers must abide by while operating semi-trucks. Some of the rules include hours-of-service regulations and record-keeping regulations. The hours-of-service regulations from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) that prevent drivers from traveling roadways after a particular amount of hours. A truck driver cannot continue to drive after traveling for more than 11 hours a day, for example. Truck drivers who have violated these rules have a greater chance of being held liable for truck accidents.

Seeking compensation for semi-truck crashes in Chattanooga

The compensation a truck accident victim can receive from a semi-truck accident is typically greater than the compensation from a car accident. Because the damage from a semi-truck accident can result in catastrophic injuries, a truck accident victim is entitled to larger amounts of compensation. However, a car accident victim could receive an equal amount of compensation if they suffered similar catastrophic injuries.

Even though both types of accidents can result in a serious injury, a semi-truck accident can result in much more serious injuries. Regardless of the type of accident in which you are involved, you need a lawyer who can provide high-quality legal representation. At Wagner & Wagner Attorneys at Law, our Chattanooga truck accident attorneys want to help you and your family recover as comfortably as possible.

One way that our injury attorneys can help is by identifying the appropriate liable parties in your semi-truck or car accident. In regard to your truck accident, you may be able to hold several parties liable and receive compensation from all parties for your injuries. However, pursuing compensation from all parties includes negotiating with all of the parties’ insurance companies. Considering negotiations with various insurance companies can seem overwhelming, especially when you are focusing on recovery. Our attorneys can do this on your behalf.

Another benefit our attorneys bring to the table is gathering the best evidence for your case. In many cases, the insurance companies will offer the compensation that you deserve when your attorneys are adamant about taking your case to trial. The more evidence that proves the other party’s negligence can strengthen your chances of receiving your fair and just compensation.

Allow the Chattanooga truck accident attorneys at Wagner & Wagner Attorneys at Law to provide the high-quality legal representation that you deserve. Our hard-hitting legal team is passionate about fighting for your legal rights inside and outside of the courtroom. Call us today at 423-756-7923, or complete our contact form to schedule a free consultation. We serve injured clients in Chattanooga, Cleveland, and North Georgia.