Truck accidents cause some of the most devastating damage on the road, and they happen more often than you think. In 2020, there were 13,825 motor vehicle crashes involving semi-trucks in Texas. More than 500 people were killed, and more than 7,000 people were injured, with many receiving treatment for critical injuries. Lives are lost and others changed forever when someone is negligent behind the wheel of a 40-ton vehicle.
If you have been injured in an 18-wheeler accident, or if a loved one has been incapacitated or killed, you have the right to pursue compensation for any damages, including overwhelming medical and funeral expenses, lost income, and any additional pain and suffering you’ve been forced to endure. In Texas, you also may be able to hold a party accountable through the awarding of punitive damages.
At my firm, The Law Office of Aaron Fonseca, I am dedicated to working with clients in Edinburg, McAllen, and Mission, Texas, as well as throughout the Rio Grande Valley to help them seek the justice they deserve. With so many individuals facing significant injuries, and countless others dealing with the loss of a loved one due to the negligent actions of another, I’m proud to do all that I can to help these victims get the compensation they need for their pain and suffering.
Due to their size and weight, the operation of semi-trucks is subject to stricter federal and state laws designed to maintain safety while on the road. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations and Title 7 of the Texas Transportation Code govern numerous aspects of semi-truck operations, including driver training and qualifications, inspection and operation of the vehicles and trailers, compliance reviews and audits, and minimum requirements for liability insurance coverage.
There is a two-year statute of limitations for personal injury and wrongful death claims in Texas. If you have been injured in an accident involving a semi-truck, or a loved one has been killed, you have two years from the date of the crash or the date of death resulting from crash injuries to either settle an insurance claim against the liable parties or to file a lawsuit in the appropriate Texas court.
Liability or fault for a semi-truck accident can often lie with more than one individual or entity. Under the law, you can file a claim or lawsuit against any party whose negligence contributed to the crash, including any of the following:
The Truck Driver - If the driver failed to inspect the semi-truck properly, logged excessive hours on the road and was fatigued, or simply failed to pay attention, the driver can be held liable.
The Trucking Company - If the trucking company failed to adequately train or supervise the driver, placed profit over safety, or places a driver with a poor safety record back on the road, the company itself can be held liable.
The Manufacturer - If the manufacturer of the semi-truck or trailer, or of the parts used on the truck, provided faulty parts, like defective brakes or a compromised coupling mechanism that led to the crash, they can be held liable.
Maintenance Personnel - Anyone who failed to inspect, repair, and maintain the vehicle can be held liable.
Cargo Loaders - The person or persons who improperly loaded cargo that caused shifting or falling cargo that led to a crash can also be held liable.
There are a number of other factors that should be considered when determining liability for a crash, including potential negligence or comparative fault on the part of any other drivers involved in the crash, as well as road and weather conditions at the time of the accident.
Because trucking companies are required to carry high limits on liability insurance policies, there is usually substantial money at stake. Trucking insurance companies retain aggressive attorneys to fight off injury claims and defend their business — and so should you.
The investigation of a semi-truck accident is critical to documenting evidence of negligence against any party who might have contributed to the crash. You need an experienced truck accident attorney who knows how to preserve evidence, investigate the circumstances of the crash, interview witnesses, research the history of the truck driver, and retain crash reconstructionists and other experts if necessary. You’ll also need an experienced Texas personal injury attorney on your side to negotiate aggressively with the insurer, and if the claim cannot be settled, to litigate your case in court.
If a loved one has been incapacitated or killed in a truck accident, you should talk to an attorney as soon as possible to ensure the preservation of critical evidence and explore the possibility of a wrongful death claim.
Federal and state laws require the trucking industry to comply with rigorous safety standards. You need an attorney who knows those regulations and how to determine if those standards were met. If you’ve been injured in a crash involving a semi-truck or other commercial vehicle, or if a loved one has been incapacitated or killed, you shouldn’t have to face this challenge on your own. The statute of limitations is brief, and proving negligence will be the key to holding the guilty party accountable and winning the compensation you need to recover.
Above all, you need someone with reliable legal expertise and experience fighting for you to make sure that every party liable for your injuries or your loved one’s death is held accountable. At The Law Office of Aaron Fonseca, I have spent years working with accident victims to protect their rights and help them seek the justice they deserve. Call or reach out to my firm today to schedule a free case consultation and learn more about how I can help you with your case.
Individuals and their families from Edinburg, Texas and throughout the Rio Grande Valley turn to The Law Office of Aaron Fonseca to pursue personal injury and wrongful death claims after devastating crashes involving semi-trucks. Over the years I have helped countless individuals and families, and I may be able to help you too. Call my office today to schedule a free consultation. Let me help you take that first step toward getting the justice you deserve.