Liability In Florida Commercial Truck Accidents
Truck accidents are a serious problem in Florida. According to a report from the United States Department of Transportation, around 4,000 Americans are killed in commercial truck accidents each year. In Florida alone, the number is nearly 250. Many thousands more suffer serious injuries. Injured truck accident victims face a confusing process when attempting to make an accident claim. Figuring out liability, insurance, and the regulations can feel overwhelming. But, an experienced Tampa truck accident attorney can sort out your case and help you recover the compensation you deserve.
Sorting out Liability
Commercial trucking is a massive and complex business operation. The business complexity can create a confusing legal situation. One of the biggest issues is determining who is liable for an accident. Any combination of the following parties might bear the blame for your Florida truck accident injuries:
- Truck driver;
- Employer of the driver;
- Owner of the truck;
- Owner of the trailer
- Manufacturer of any part of the truck; or
- Company leasing the truck or trailer.
It is critical that you get your case in the hands of an experienced truck accident attorney immediately after an accident. Sometimes those parties, and their insurers, will start finger pointing and make the process even more confusing. Ultimately, a successful truck accident injury claim is all about the evidence. When your attorney hits the ground immediately, the evidence becomes easier to gather and your attorney can assemble it in a compelling manner.
Key Evidence In Florida Truck Accidents Cases
- The black box: Commercial trucks are almost always equipped with an electronic data recorder commonly referred to as a ‘black box’. This data provides crucial supporting evidence. The truck company may try to block your access to this data, but your attorney will make sure that you get fair access to the evidence. You have the right to electronic data.
- Witness statements: Eyewitnesses provide useful testimony. Sometimes they back up your version of the story. Other times they support your story by adding a new fact entirely. Unfortunately, as each day passes, eyewitness become more difficult to track down. That is why it is so important to get moving quickly in your case.
- Truck company records: Your attorney may be able to compel the trucking company to turn over any information that is relevant to your case. Commercial trucking is a heavily regulated industry. The companies are legally obligated to follow all state and federal trucking safety regulations. For example, the companies must follow rules about driver work time limits, truck inspections, and truck maintenance. Further, the company’s record of vehicle repairs and the drivers road record may be relevant. If the evidence shows that the company was violating a safety regulation, that can help you prove negligence.
Contact An Experienced Tampa Truck Accident Attorney
Large commercials trucks are responsible for more than their fair share of serious highway accident injuries in Florida. The complexity of the business and the law makes truck accident claims especially challenging. You need the services of an experienced truck accident attorney. At the Pawlowski//Mastrilli Law Group we work hard to get justice for the victims of commercial truck accidents. If you have been injured by a truck in Florida, please call our Tampa Bay office today (813) 803-6518 to learn more about your legal options.