A local teacher was killed in a commercial truck accident on Highway 99 near Fowler. According to the California Highway Patrol, she was traveling south on Highway 99 when she began to slow down for traffic. Allegedly, the driver of a 2010 Freightliner truck did not see the victim’s vehicle slow down and was unable to top the truck before it collided into the rear of the vehicle forcing it over the shoulder of the highway and into a cement wall.
Who is Responsible in a Commercial Truck Accident?
In most commercial truck accidents, the driver of the truck is held responsible for the crash. Common driver errors that can cause a commercial truck accident include:
- Inexperienced and/or improperly trained drivers
- Speeding or other traffic infractions
- Distracted driving
- Drowsy and fatigued driving
- Driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs
- Reckless driving
However, other parties may be liable for a commercial truck accident. Depending on the facts of the case, a trucking company, repair shop, shipper, or truck manufacturer may be held liable for damages in a commercial truck accident.
Other Defendants in a Commercial Truck Accident
Some other parties that may be named as a defendant in a commercial truck accident lawsuit include:
- Trucking Company – If the trucking company pushed the driver to exceed the limit on driving hours, the company may be held liable with the driver in the event of a commercial truck accident. Other reasons why a trucking company may be held liable for injuries in a collision include improper training; failing to screen drivers; failure to maintain the equipment; and, violation of federal trucking laws.
- Shipper – If cargo is improperly loaded causing the cargo to shift during transit, it can cause an accident. This can result in the shipper being held liable for the injuries in a commercial truck accident. Another reason a shipper may be named as a defendant is if the shipper is shipping hazardous materials and does not inform the truck driver or the trucking company so that proper hazmat protocols can be followed.
- Repair Shop – Repair shops that perform faulty repairs or use worn or incorrect parts to make repairs can be held liable if those repairs cause a commercial truck accident. In many cases, the trucking company will name the repair shop as a third party defendant claiming the repairs is what actually caused the collision.
- Truck and/or Parts Manufacturer – The truck, trailer, or parts may be defective. If this is the case, the manufacturer may be held liable for the damages in an accident. Again, the trucking company may name the manufacturer as a third party defendant alleging the accident is the result of a defective product or the accident victim may name the manufacturer directly as a defendant.
A commercial truck accident must be handled differently from other motor vehicle accidents due to the federal laws governing commercial trucking. Trucking companies and their insurance companies have teams of professionals working for them to limit the liability in a commercial truck accident. You need an experienced truck accident attorney on your side to protect your interests and fight for your right to receive full compensation for your injuries.
Do You Need A Fresno Truck Accident Attorney?
If you have been injured in a commercial truck accident, you need an experienced trucking accident attorney to protect your rights. Call Torem & Associates at 1-800-954-4444 or use our convenient online contact form to schedule a free consultation.