Truck Accident Lawyers Serving Parkland
If you're planning on taking a trip for the purposes of enjoying a vacation or just a quick getaway, Parkland, Florida is a perfect choice. With exceptional weather and beautiful park-like surroundings, Parkland offers both residents and visitors the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors. If you enjoy golfing, there is the Parkland Golf Club. And if you like cooling off on a hot afternoon, you have the scenic Quiet Waters Park. Unfortunately, there are some negative considerations, as well. This involves the possibility of truck-related accidents on Parkland's roadways.
While enjoying the beautiful weather and many attractions in Parkland, Florida, you may also notice the relatively large number of 18-wheel commercial vehicles that populate the highways as well. In most cases, drivers just take these oversized vehicles for granted. Others may experience a momentary twinge of nervousness as a result of being intimidated by the vehicle's immense size. This is understandable given the fact that these vehicles average around 80,000 lbs. and can be 30 times the size of the average passenger car. That, plus the fact that it can cross a driver's mind that all of this machinery is being controlled by a single individual who, like all humans, are prone to making errors from time to time. This observation is justified by the fact that commercial vehicle accidents occur throughout the state on a regular basis. If you, or a loved one has been injured in one of these accidents then you may consider seeking the help of a truck accident lawyer serving Parkland.
Of course, commercial truck accidents can occur for a wide range of causes. In some cases, a truck part can fail due to wear or being defective in the first place. These are a couple of reasons why trucks are required by law to undergo regular inspections in order to check for situations involving parts that need to be replaced. Poor weather-related road conditions may also play a key role when it comes to a truck accident. But the most tragic of accidents may arise due to the negligence of someone who has failed to perform their job in a proper manner. This can represent a true tragedy, since these are the types of accidents that could have been avoided in the first place.
If you have suffered an injury or have lost a loved one in a Parkland truck accident, the truck accident attorneys at Frankl & Kominsky may be able to assist you in determining who was responsible for that accident.Different Types of Truck Accidents
Needless to say, there are many different types of truck accidents, depending on the particular circumstances. Some of these include:
- Commercial Trucks – These types of trucks can run under a strict schedule that may result in driver fatigue.
- Semi Trucks – Accidents can occur when these huge trucks have been loaded beyond their legal capacity.
- Tractor Trailer Trucks – A tractor trailer truck can run the risk of a "jack-knife" accident if the load hasn't been properly distributed.
- Company or Rented Trucks – These trucks can sometimes be driven by unqualified drivers or drivers that lack proper supervision.
- Moving Trucks – These trucks tend to carry different types of asymmetrical loads such as house furniture. If not loaded properly, an accident may occur when the vehicle swerves on a sharp turn.
- Work Trucks – These trucks can be driven by employees who haven't received the proper training.
As was previously mentioned, some truck accidents result from situations in which no one was really at fault. These include accidents related to sudden weather changes and parts that fail unexpectedly. However, it's the types of truck accident that results from avoidable reasons that tend to be the most common. These include:
- Lack of truck driving experience
- Overloading trucks
- Operating oversized trucks on narrow roads
- Failure to see other vehicles due to the truck's large blind spot
- Failing to obey traffic laws
- Driving for too long without taking a break
- Failure to monitor the driving hours of the truck driver
- Not keep the tractor and/or trailer in a safe, working condition
- Hiring an unqualified or unfit truck driver
- Failure to properly supervise the truck driver
- Failure to properly train the truck driver
- Selecting an unqualified or unfit truck company
It doesn't take much to figure out that this is probably one of the most common types of accidents. The reason for this has to do with the wide range of situations that pertain to these situations. Remember – a commercial 18-wheeler is basically a huge machine that is propelled by a flammable fuel mixture and travelling at a high rate of speed. This goliath is also being controlled by a single person who may have become impaired due to fatigue or other reasons. Needless to say, operating an 18-wheeler requires complete and total attention every moment. Even a slight miscalculation may result in a catastrophic accident in which a fatality is definitely a possibility.
Imagine a situation in which a truck driver has become over-fatigued due to an extensive trip that covered hundreds of miles. Suppose that individual is rushing to meet a critical deadline and this didn't take the mandatory break times in order to meet that deadline? This is just one of the situations that may result in another accident involving moving trucks. Other driver-related situations that may lead to accidents include:
- Taking non-prescription drugs as a means to stay awake for extended periods of time
- Disregarding if the truck they're driving has had its regular inspections
- Agreeing to drive an overloaded truck in return for a ‘bonus'
- Attempting to save time by using a back road that is unsuitable for large trucks
- Trying to save time by not taking mandatory sleep/rest breaks
- Ignoring local safe driving laws
- Driving too aggressively
As you might expect, commercial 18-wheelers tend to spend much more time on the road than the average passenger car. This means that it's critical that they receive their regular inspections in order to check for worn parts. For example, if worn brakes and/or tires give out when a truck is travelling at a high rate of speed, then this could very well lead to a major accident as the driver suddenly loses control of the vehicle.
Equipment Failure - Defective parts on a truck may not be the fault of the driver, but they can turn deadly. Your attorney may be able to tell if a trucking company or manufacturer could potentially be liable for your accident in addition to the truck driver.
- The defective truck or a particular part was "unreasonably dangerous"
- The truck was being operated as the manufacturer intended
- The truck's performance had not changed since its initial purchase
There are specific mandatory laws that are designed to keep a truck from being overloaded. These mandatory standards are based on the type of truck that is being loaded. The reason has to do with the fact that an overloaded truck can cause the driver to lose control to the truck's lack of balance. This lack of balance can cause the truck to tip over and create a situation in which the truck, and surrounding vehicles, will be placed in immediate danger. This is especially true in situations in which the truck happens to be travelling in inclement weather such as rain or snow. Unfortunately, there are trucking companies that try to increase their profit margin by overloading their vehicles.Serious injuries After a Truck Crash
Like most vehicle accidents, truck accidents can result in a number of different injuries. However, these injuries can be more severe due to the size of a commercial truck. Injuries may include:
- Injuries to the knee, shoulder, or hip
- Nerve Damage
- Injuries to the Spine
- Back and Neck Injuries
- Cuts and Bruises
- Traumatic Brain Injuries
- Broken or Fractured Bones
The types of damages that may be included in a truck accident claim include:
- Medical expenses
- Current and future lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Mental anguish
- Other accident-related expenses
- Therapy and rehabilitation
- Vehicle or home modifications to accommodate a disability
- Loss of Consortium - losing a spouse, parent or child in the case of a fatality
- Pain and Suffering
- Repair or replacement of your vehicle
Trucking companies that may try to increase profits by overloading their vehicles can result in serious problems. Even with all the programs that are in place in order to keep overloaded trucks off the roads, this is still an existing problem.
Federal commercial truck weight limits can be seen at: The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
Semi Trailers – The maximum weight that a semi is allowed to carry is:
- 20,000 lb (9,100 kg) on a single axle
- 34,000 lb (15,000 kg) on a tandem
- 80,000 lb (36,000 kg) total for any vehicle or combination
- The maximum weight, per axel, is 20,000 pounds with the axles spaced no less than 40 inches apart and no more than 96 inches apart. Its maximum width is 8.5 ft (2.6 m) and no maximum height.
U.S. Semitruck – The maximum weight (with full trailer) is 80,000 pounds that is distributed over 18 wheels. (23 U.S.C. 127).
Trucks must also be equipped with a rear-end underride protection device according to 49 C.F.R. s. 393.86
It is equipped with a substantial rear-end underride protection device meeting the requirements of 49 C.F.R. s. 393.86, "Rear End Protection."Florida Truck Laws
In Parkland (and throughout Florida), the law (s. 316.550) states:
- In a truck tractor-semitrailer combination, the semitrailer cannot exceed 48 feet in its overall outside dimensions. This is measured from the unit's front to its rear. This will usually exclude energy conservation and safety devices that have been approved to be utilized on open roads, by the Parkland Department of Transportation.
- In order to operate a semi trailer that is over than 48 feet in its lengths, may only operate in Parkland if a special permit is used s. 550.
When it comes to Parkland truck accidents involving company trucks, a truck accident attorney may be able to assist you in determining who is liable for the crash. It could be the truck driver, the trucking company or the loading company. It may even be a combination of two or three possible parties.
An employer may be held responsible for its employees' actions, as long as the employees acted in the scope of their employment. This means a trucking company or another large corporation can potentially be held liable for the injuries you sustained in a South Florida commercial truck accident.
Occasionally, truck accidents occur because of negligent actions on the part of a truck maintenance company, truck manufacturer, parts manufacturer, or even a tire company. We can help you determine who is liable for your injuries, and pursue a claim for compensation based on that party's insurance policy.
It is important to note, however, automobile collisions can be the result of a variety of factors, and sometimes multiple parties can accept some blame for one accident. In some cases, you may share the responsibility for your accident with the trucking company. This does not prevent you from collecting compensation, although it does reduce your available compensation based on the theory of comparative negligence.What are Some Commercial Truck Accident Statistics in the U.S.?
National statistics, for large truck and bus accidents have reported:
- About 59% of the deaths involving commercial trucks have occurred on major roadways that were not part of any interstate or freeway system. Also, 9% have occurred on smaller roadways.
- Truck accidents occur most frequently during the hours between 6 a.m. - 3 p.m., when 47% have been documented. Also, during those times, 47% of fatalities have also been reported.
- About 16% of commercial truck accidents happen on the weekend (Saturday and Sunday).
If you decide to file a lawsuit for your truck accident, it's important to understand that there is a statute of limitations. In a personal injury case, you will have just 4 years from the time of the accident in order to file your lawsuit. If you fail to file your lawsuit within the four years, your case will likely be dismissed. There are some exceptions to this, but these are quite rare. In addition, if the accident victim has been killed, then the victim's estate will only have 2 years from the date of death in order to file a wrongful death claim. You can find the specific information here: Florida Statute section 95.11(3)(a). If you have any questions, speak to an experienced personal injury lawyer for assistance.What to Do After a Truck Accident in Parkland
So as to protect your rights when seeking damages for your truck accident claim here are some suggestions on what you may choose to do:
- Never accept any cash or sign any checks that are presented to you by the other party's insurance company or attorney
- Never sign any document unless it is approved by your own attorney.
- Never discuss any details of your truck accident (other than with your own attorney)
- Never post your accident details on social media
Seek the advice of a personal injury truck accident attorney serving Parkland, who can offer guidance and assistance in pursuing the care and compensation that you rightfully deserve. Therefore, if you or a loved one are involved in a Parkland truck accident, contact an experienced and dedicated personal injury attorney.Start Your Free Consultation with Our Personal Injury Lawyers
At Frankl & Kominsky, we offer our clients diligent legal representation along with superior client support.
- No Fee Unless We Win
- Over $75 Million in Accident & Injury Settlements
- Over 40 Years of Combined Legal Experience
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For your truck accident injury claim or in the case of the death of a loved one, discuss your claim with a Truck Accident Personal Injury Attorney Serving Parkland Today! Turn to Frankl & Kominsky for comprehensive legal guidance. Call 561-800-8000 or use our Contact Form to set up a free consultation.