Few vehicles grab our attention like the 80,000-pound monsters known across the nation as semi-trucks, 18-wheelers, or trailer tractors. We travel alongside these behemoths every day, watching their every move and doing our part to avoid an incident.
But sadly, we often see they are the cause of tragedy.
In 2015 alone, there were over 32,000 fatal crashes on the nation’s roadways, with nearly 4,000 (11.9%) involving at least one large truck or bus. That doesn’t account for an additional 476,000 nonfatal crashes. And the number of incidents involving these large truck is only increasing.
- Read more about Louisiana personal injury truck accident law.
What Makes Commercial Vehicles & Semi-Trucks So Dangerous
Large commercial vehicles are classified by weight – Class A and Class B.
Both categories of vehicles generally weigh over 26,000 pounds and include a number of larger trucks including dump trucks, garbage trucks, passenger buses, and semi-trucks.
18-wheelers, also known as semi-trailers and tractor-trailers, are the largest of these commercial-type vehicles and can be especially dangerous on the road for a number of reasons including:
- 18-wheelers can haul up to 80,000 lbs. but with certain permits can carry a gross weight that is even higher. Comparatively, the average passenger vehicle weighs approximately 5,000 pounds.
- On average, tractor trailers are over 13 feet high, 20 feet wide, and can reach lengths of 80-feet long.
- Semi-trailers take 40% longer than passenger vehicles to come to a complete stop.
- Because of a 18-wheelers higher ground clearance, passenger vehicles are in danger of underriding trucks in a traffic accident.
- Even when driving without an attached trailer, semi-trucks can be extremely challenging to handle. Slick roads and bad weather can contribute greatly to an accident.
While being a safe and vigilant driver is always in your best interest, accidents still do occur. When you’re involved in a commercial truck accident that is beyond your control, the trustworthy team of New Orleans lawyers at Cardone Law Firm is here for you.
With over 40 years of experience and a valuable number of working relationships with doctors, engineers, private investigators, and reconstruction experts, find comfort in knowing that our New Orleans personal injury attorneys have your best interest in mind.
Finding Resolution After A Commercial Truck Accident
If you or a loved one has been involved in a truck accident in the New Orleans area, our team of expert lawyers understand exactly what information needs to be gathered in order to build an impeccable case.
At Cardone Law Firm, our personal injury lawyers gather valuable information about the driver, company, and truck records, in order to better understand the situation.
The Importance of Truck Records
State and federal mandates require that commercial vehicles undergo inspection in order to prevent equipment failure that can lead to traffic accidents. When inspections uncover maintenance issues or repair needs, the trucking companies are notified and should comply with these requirements. These maintenance repairs are then recorded by the trucking companies. Failure to do so essentially demonstrates that there was a lack of care and duty. Absence of information can be used to build your case by proving that a lack of maintenance on their end played a part in your accident.
The Value of Driver Records
Companies that employ commercial truck drivers are responsible for evaluating their employees, as well as maintaining driving records, any history of tickets for speeding, or other traffic violations. Evaluation reviews and instances of write-ups can prove to be critical elements in a tractor trailer accident investigation. Our lawyers are able to utilize these driving records to better understand the situation and can help to uncover additional information such as:
- Complaints against the commercial truck driver.
- History of accidents.
- Any reprimands or terminations that occurred in other positions held by the driver.
- Drug and alcohol test results.
These records can be used to determine if the employer failed to recognize a dangerous employee. A lack of meaningful action on their end can be shown that they bear responsibility in the accident as well.
The Role of Employer Records
While companies may not be partial to providing this information, our dependable attorneys at Cardone Law Firm can help you to obtain these documents.
One of the key elements that can be used to determine the responsibility of the employer is understanding the level of training and guidance provided to their drivers. Training guides and courses are used to educate the employee on safety requirements and company policies.
Our ability to gather these documents and training guides will allow us to understand:
- Driver safety training.
- Company protocols.
- The level of training provided to employees.
- The tools used to measure the employee’s understanding of company standards.
- The date of training.
- The effects of company policy on driver’s ability to safely complete work.
Additionally, our experienced and trustful team often utilize the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Safety and Fitness Electronic Records System (SAFER) to uncover company history related to safety ratings, company safety records, and crash information.
When an accident changes your world, you need a dependable law firm to fight for you. Trust in Cardone Law Firm.
Your comfort, health, recovery, and financial well being are of utmost importance to the Louisiana truck accident attorneys of Cardone Law Firm. We’ve spent decades fighting for those who have suffered a personal injury and need help when they can’t defend themselves.
For a free confidential consultation, please contact us today at 504-522-3333.
Together we can win.