On average, 3,000 to 5,000 people die each year in vehicle accidents involving trucks. Over three-fourths of those injured in a truck accident are not truck drivers. In spite of stringent federal and Indiana state regulations, commercial vehicles remain the most deadly cause of fatal accidents in the country.
Indiana State Regulations
The size and weight of the average truck pose a serious threat to the safety of non-commercial drivers. As such, all truck drivers must have an adequate amount of rest and steer clear of any substances that may impair their state of mind. These substances include alcohol, illegal drugs, and prescription drugs.
Additionally, those in charge of loading commercial trucks must adequately distribute the weight in a way that does not prohibit the driver from being able to maneuver the vehicle.
Lastly, not all roads allow commercial trucks. They must adhere to state traffic regulations, which restrict them to roads that give them adequate space.
Many federal regulations are similar to those in the state of Indiana. However, when injuries occur in a truck accident, the most strict laws will bear greater authority in a personal injury lawsuit.
Federal regulations address how often a truck driver must inspect all the equipment in their vehicle. Brakes, tires, hitches, and more must meet federal requirements. Those who manufacture the equipment parts must also maintain minimum quality standards to make sure they are not endangering the truck driver and other drivers on the road.
All federal regulations pertaining to commercial vehicles are moderated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration(FMCSA) within the US Department of Transportation.
Liable Parties in Commercial Trucking
If you or someone you love is injured in a truck accident, you should speak with a personal injury attorney right away. You are entitled to compensation for your injuries, but liable parties may try to coerce you into accepting responsibility for the truck accident.
In a traditional vehicle accident, only the drivers involved are potentially liable for injuries and property damage. In a truck accident, however, several organizations and individuals may share the blame for injuries and property damage. The truck driver may be liable. Both state and federal regulations place a greater burden of care upon them, and they are required to take adequate breaks and maintain their vehicle equipment.
The company that hired the driver may also be liable. They are ultimately responsible for the negligence of their drivers. The loaders may also be liable. Whether it’s a loading company or a few individuals, they are expected to follow state and federal regulations when it comes to weight distribution. Lastly, the vehicle parts manufacturers may be liable for defective parts.
There could be as many as four different individuals or organizations that share liability for your injuries. Because each of these groups knows the gravity of the situation, companies will be eager to put the issue to rest before having to present their negligence to a courtroom.
Seeking Compensation After a Truck Accident
Speaking with an Indiana truck accident attorney will help you take on personnel representing the truck driver. Also, your attorney can help you seek compensation for hospital bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.
For more information about how an Indiana truck accident attorney can help you with your case, contact Stewart & Stewart Attorneys at 800-333-3529, or visit our website.