18 Wheeler Accident Lawyer

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Every year, tens of thousands of people are injured in accidents with 18-wheelers. While new laws and regulations have been passed to make trucking safer, the number of accidents has continued to climb for over a decade. Much of the problem is caused by desperate trucking companies looking to fill seats, cut costs, and meet deadlines.

Despite tougher regulations within the trucking industry, truck accidents have continued to rise. If you have been involved in an accident with an 18-wheeler, call Mike Morse Law Firm today. We are a tough team of experienced personal injury attorneys – the largest in the state, in fact. With our extensive resources, we have been able to help clients receive over $1 billion in damages.

You can reach us 24/7 at (855) MIKE-WINS or by filling out the online form. There is no fee unless you win your case, so do not hesitate to reach out today.

The Main Causes of 18-Wheeler Accidents

18-wheeler accidents are uncomfortably common. The main causes of these accidents are listed below.

Fatigued driving

This is a major problem within the industry. There are laws on the books that help to regulate how many hours a driver is on the road. At the same time, some trucking companies try to push the limits of the law. 

According to the FMCSA, a driver is limited to 11 hours per day or as many as 60 to 70 hours in a week. These are driving times and do not include time at the shipper. 

While commercial truck drivers cannot exceed their hours of service, they are pushed to their limits daily. Being on the road that long and away from home for weeks at a time can cause exhaustion and fatigue.

Distracted driving

Being distracted while driving is another big problem. Drivers can get quite lonely and bored on the open road. There is very little to do other than watching the dashes and lines of the highway for hours at a time. Distractions can include looking at scenery, changing the radio station, eating, talking on the phone, and so much more rather than focusing on the road. Due to an 18-wheeler’s long stopping distance, all it takes is a few seconds of glancing away from what’s going on in front of him for a driver to cause a major accident.

Under the influence

Everyone knows that driving while under the influence is illegal and irresponsible, but that is perhaps especially the case while driving an 18-wheeler. All it takes is a single drink of alcohol to impair one’s driving and decrease reaction time. Many drivers might also think it is okay to partake during their off-time, but this might leave them hungover or still intoxicated hours later. 

Improperly loaded trailers

It is not uncommon for a shipper to improperly load a truck. Shippers have also been known to overload a truck beyond its legal weight limit. This can cause the trailer to be severely imbalanced. A sharp turn is all that is needed to send the truck over on its side. Unsecured items can also fall out of the truck and strike other vehicles, causing an accident.

Bad weather

Everyone understands that bad weather can make driving more dangerous. 18-wheelers can be more susceptible to losing control when roads are slick. Visibility can also be a problem when you have slow reaction times.

Speeding

Driving too fast to make a deadline is never a good idea. Still, some drivers push their trucks to the limit. Having to stop suddenly can force the truck to jackknife and lose control.

Failing to keep up with maintenance and inspections

Commercial truck drivers are often required to perform a pre-trip and post-trip inspection of their vehicles. These inspections pinpoint specific areas of the truck in question to ensure everything is in good working condition. 

The problem is that drivers can get too comfortable or lazy and skip or abbreviate these necessary checks. This can result in tire blowouts or brakes that wear down and do not work as well. If something is wrong, drivers might forgo getting maintenance on their rigs. 

Truck defects

While it is always easy to blame the driver for an accident, he or she is not to blame in every case. Sometimes it is the truck or part manufacturer who is to blame. When defects cause accidents that result in injuries, manufacturers can be held liable for their mistakes.

Lack of training

There is currently a deficit of 80,000 drivers in the US. This is causing all sorts of havoc throughout our supply chain. Companies are eager to push recruits through training and get them on the road. Many of these greenhorn drivers are not yet equipped to be out there. The lack of training may be the main reason why truck accidents have been on the rise.

If you have been hurt in a commercial vehicle accident, hiring an 18-wheeler accident lawyer is the best way to recover damages. Your attorney will be able to investigate the causes of the accident and go after those responsible for your injuries to make them pay.

What to Do After an Accident With an 18-Wheeler

18-wheelers can inflict extensive damage. If you are ever unlucky enough to find yourself involved in an accident with one, you might not know what to do next. 

Here is a list of steps you can take to help you in your case against the trucking company:

  • Call 911
  • Get medical attention, even if you do not think you are injured
  • Stay on the scene until the police arrive
  • Take all the names of everyone involved, including witnesses and the other driver
  • Record addresses, phone numbers, and badge numbers
  • Take photographs of the accident scene and your injuries if you are able
  • Refrain from admitting fault to anyone
  • Contact your insurance company to let them know what happened
  • Discuss the details of your accident only with the police and don’t even post about it online

18-Wheeler Accident Cases Are Complex

While most accident cases can be difficult to litigate, truck accidents can be especially troublesome. Proving responsibility in an accident takes a lot of evidence. The most difficult part can be challenging the trucking companies themselves. They rarely admit they are liable for an accident involving one of their drivers.

There are thousands of trucking accidents each year. These companies are prepared, with highly-trained lawyers standing ready to attack your claim. They can show up on-site within hours of the incident, and they know all the best strategies they can use to deny responsibility and avoid paying for your injuries. They will comb through the scene looking for anything they can use to reduce your claim.

Why not arm yourself with the largest personal injury firm in Michigan? Mike Morse Law Firm stands ready to help you. We have spent over 25 years negotiating fair settlements from insurance companies. We use all the latest science and advanced trial tactics to ensure our clients are well taken care of.

If you need a tough and knowledgeable personal injury attorney, call Mike Morse Law Firm today at (855) MIKE-WINS. We are available 24/7 to take your call. There is no fee unless you win.

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