Kansas City Truck Accident Attorneys
Accidents Involving Big Rigs, Semis, 18-Wheelers & More
Navigating the aftermath of a devastating truck accident can be overwhelming, particularly when confronting the aggressive tactics often employed by trucking companies to dispute claims and lawsuits. It is in such challenging times that you may require the steadfast support of a legal professional who understands the intricacies of the law and how defendants typically react in these types of cases. The Law Office of Tom Wagstaff Jr. stands ready to offer both legal and moral support.
Make our Kansas City truck accident lawyers your first choice after a serious accident with a commercial truck. Our firm has renowned trial lawyers who are known for their successes in complex cases that required litigation to solve. We stand committed to fighting for justice for our clients and have a proven track record in handling serious injury claims, such as those involving truck accidents. When faced with the tenacity of a trucking company that won’t take your claim seriously, make us your first call for comprehensive legal counsel.
Schedule a free consultation with our firm by dialing (816) 597-4556 now.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
Truck accidents are frequently the result of negligence on the part of the truck driver or the trucking company. This negligence can manifest in various ways, ranging from reckless driving behavior to failure to adhere to mandatory safety norms. It is essential to understand these common causes as it could strengthen your claim and help you secure the justice and compensation you deserve.
Our firm can handle truck accident cases involving these types of negligence and more:
- Truck driver exhaustion: Long hours on the road without adequate rest can lead to fatigue, reducing a driver's ability to react quickly to road conditions or unexpected situations.
- Truck driver impairment: A trucker may be impaired due to alcohol, drugs, or prescription medications that affect the driver's ability to safely operate the vehicle.
- Speeding: Operating a large, heavy vehicle at high speeds significantly increases the risk of an accident, as it takes longer for a truck to stop or adjust its course.
- Overloaded trailer: Overloading a trailer beyond its capacity can lead to loss of control over the vehicle, increasing the chances of a rollover or jackknife accident. An overweight trailer will also increase the distance the truck needs to come to a complete stop.
- Poor truck maintenance: Failure to properly maintain a truck may result in mechanical failures like brake failure or tire blowouts, which can cause catastrophic accidents.
Evidence to Build a Truck Accident Claim
The Law Office of Tom Wagstaff Jr. is well-equipped to conduct thorough investigations into truck accidents on behalf of our clients. With a deep understanding of the many facets involved in such cases, we meticulously examine all situations to find compelling evidence. Our process can include collaborating with third-party experts such as accident reconstructionists, mechanical engineers, and safety inspectors to build a robust case that proves that liability belongs to the defendant, not you.
The following types of evidence can be instrumental in building a strong truck accident claim:
- Eyewitness testimony: Statements from people who witnessed the accident can provide valuable insights into what happened, including details about the truck driver's behavior, traffic conditions, and more.
- Dashcam footage: Video footage from dashcams or nearby security cameras can provide a clear, objective account of the incident, supporting your version of events.
- Electronic onboard recorder (EOBR) data: Most modern trucks are equipped with EOBRs that track crucial data like speed, braking, and hours of service. This data can reveal if the driver was speeding, braking erratically, or violating hours-of-service regulations at the time of the accident.
- Trucking company accident records: These records can show if the trucking company has a history of accidents, which may indicate negligence in terms of training, maintenance, or adherence to safety standards.
- Accident reconstruction by an expert: A specialist in accident reconstruction can analyze the scene, vehicle damage, and other evidence to reconstruct the sequence of events leading up to the accident. This can provide a scientific explanation of how and why the accident occurred, further strengthening your claim.
Important Trucking Industry Regulations
Trucking industry regulations are designed to prevent accidents and promote safety on the roads. These rules, set by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), are meant to ensure that truck drivers operate within safe parameters and that trucking companies maintain their vehicles adequately. When a truck driver or trucking company violates these regulations, there is an increased risk of a truck accident.
Key trucking regulations set by the FMCSA include:
- Hours-of-service limits: To prevent fatigue-related accidents, the FMCSA has established limits on how long truck drivers can be on duty and how much of that time they can spend driving. For example, a truck driver typically cannot drive more than 11 hours following 10 consecutive hours off duty.
- Break requirements: The FMCSA requires truck drivers to take rest breaks after a certain period of driving. For example, if 8 hours have passed since the last off-duty or sleeper-berth period of at least 30 minutes, the driver usually must take a break before driving again.
- Truck weight limits: There are specific weight limits for trucks depending on their size and type. Most semi-trucks must not weigh more than 80,000 pounds when all parts are weighed together, including the trailer and its cargo.
- Truck speed limits: Trucks often have lower speed limits than other vehicles due to their size and weight. Along most highways, commercial trucks are limited to 55 mph, a bit slower than smaller passenger vehicles.
Liable Parties for Truck Accidents
The truck driver can be held responsible if their actions or negligence directly contributed to the accident. This could include circumstances such as driving while fatigued, driving under the influence, speeding, or other forms of reckless behavior. The trucking company could also bear liability, especially if there's evidence of negligence on their part. This could involve inadequate training of drivers, failure to conduct proper background checks, poor vehicle maintenance, or violating federal trucking regulations, among others. The type of employment contract between the truck driver and the trucking company can also play a role in determining liability.
Injuries Suffered in Truck Accidents
Truck accidents often result in more severe injuries compared to car accidents due to the sheer size and weight of commercial trucks. Our Kansas City truck accident lawyers have extensive experience working with medical experts who can provide comprehensive insight into your injuries and disabilities resulting from a truck accident. With their help, we can better know just how your injuries will affect you and your future well-being.
Common injuries suffered in truck accidents include:
- Head injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken bones
- Internal injuries
Our law firm also handles wrongful death claims. Losing a loved one in a truck accident is a tragic event, and we understand the emotional toll it takes on surviving family members. Let us provide compassionate legal guidance if you lost a loved one in a truck accident. We’d be honored to help you navigate through complex legal processes during such difficult times.
Compensation for Truck Accident Claimants
In a truck accident claim, you may be able to demand compensation for:
- Economic damages: These are tangible costs that can be calculated using financial records, bills, and receipts. They represent your financial losses due to the truck accident. Economic damages can cover both past and future expenses, such as medical bills (from emergency treatment, surgery, rehabilitation, medication, etc.), loss of income (if you can’t work or have a diminished earning capacity as a result of the accident), property damage (the cost of repairing or replacing a damaged vehicle), and other out-of-pocket expenses related to the accident.
- Non-economic damages: These are intangible losses that don't have a specific monetary value but greatly affect your quality of life. Non-economic damages are meant to compensate for the pain and suffering caused by the accident, such as physical pain, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment of life, traumatization, and more. Like economic damages, non-economic damages can account for both current and future suffering.
We’re Ready to Help – Contact Us Today
The Law Office of Tom Wagstaff Jr. is here to provide reliable legal support and guidance for your Kansas City truck accident claim. Our wealth of experience in handling complicated, high-stakes lawsuits equips us to effectively seek the maximum compensation for your damages. We understand the intricacies involved in trucking accident cases and are committed to standing by your side, ensuring your rights are protected every step of the way.
Talk with a Kansas City truck accident lawyer by dialing (816) 597-4556 today.
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