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Big Truck Accidents

Atlanta Tractor-Trailer Lawyer

Truck accidents — particularly those involving “big trucks,” such as a trailer truck or large passenger bus — expose others on the road to unique dangers.

Though negligent operation of a vehicle is always dangerous, the negligent operation of a truck may lead to an accident that has a higher chance of causing catastrophic injuries, or even death. Big trucks are not only less maneuverable than smaller vehicles, but the force of impact tends to be significantly greater. As such, the injuries suffered by the victims of a truck accident are more likely to be severe.

Crash data seems to support these conclusions. According to a recent report conducted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, in 2016 alone, there were 4,400 fatal crashes and 119,000 injury crashes involving large trucks.

If you’ve been injured in a big truck accident, we encourage you to contact the Law Firm of Walter Gabriel, LLC to learn more about how we can help you secure the compensation you deserve. Attorney Walter Gabriel has built a career representing the interests of those who have been harmed in various personal injury scenarios, including accidents that involve big trucks. He has worked on multiple sides of a dispute — as a prosecutor and now as a plaintiff’s-side attorney — and is therefore well-positioned to develop creative solutions to a challenging accident case.

Factors Contributing to Truck Accidents

A number of factors can contribute to truck accidents, including but not limited to:

  • Failure to properly maintain equipment
  • Driver is unlicensed (or has an expired or inadequate license)
  • Improper loading
  • Negligent operation of vehicle on sharp turns
  • Poor weather conditions
  • Speeding
  • Reckless driving
  • Intoxicated driving
  • Distracted driving (i.e., cell phone use)
  • Fatigue.

In the trucking industry, it’s quite common for employers to impose challenging schedules (and incentives) on their drivers. As such, drivers are often fatigued and sleep-deprived, and they use stimulants to help tackle their schedule. This can expose others to an unreasonable risk of harm.

Liability Issues in Big Truck Accident Lawsuits

Big truck accidents often involve commercial vehicles in which the driver is an employee acting within the course and scope of their employment. Depending on the circumstances, you may be entitled to sue and recover damages from their employer pursuant to various theories of liability.

Vicarious Liability

In Georgia, as in other states, employers are strictly liable for damages caused by their employees during the course and scope of their employment (i.e., while performing the functions of their employment, such as driving a truck).  If you are injured due to the negligence of a truck driver, then you have a right of action against their employer for damages, so long as the truck driver was “on duty.”

Negligent Hiring, Training, Supervision

The state of Georgia also recognizes an independent negligence claim brought against the employer for failing to adequately hire, train, or supervise an employee (thus contributing to the plaintiff’s injuries).

How does this work?

Suppose that you are seriously injured by a truck driver who was intoxicated at the time of the accident. After securing the assistance of an attorney, you discover that the truck driver was employed by a shipping company. If the shipping company knew that the truck driver was a struggling alcoholic, then they could arguably be held liable for negligently hiring and supervising the driver because the company should have refused to hire the driver after learning of the issue, or the employer should have prevented them from driving until the issue was resolved.

Contact the Law Firm of Walter Gabriel, LLC for a Free and Confidential Consultation

The Law Firm of Walter Gabriel, LLC is a personal injury firm with extensive experience handling motor vehicle accident claims, including those that involve “big trucks” category vehicles — 18-wheelers, vans, buses, and other large vehicles. Successfully litigating such disputes requires a deep understanding of the hierarchies of responsibility that contributed to or otherwise influenced the accident.

We are a fundamentally client-oriented firm. We closely collaborate with our clients and take the time to learn about their goals and concerns. This informational advantage enables us to act swiftly and decisively when opportunities arise in litigation.

Call (318) 445-2121 or send us a message online to request a free, confidential, and no-obligation consultation with an experienced Atlanta truck accident lawyer at the Law Firm of Walter Gabriel, LLC.