It’s hard to imagine many roadway events scarier than being hit by an 80,000lb 18-wheeler vehicle, but this is the reality for over 130,000 Americans injured by large truck crashes each year. Suffering any type of motor vehicle accident can be frightening and overwhelming, but collisions with commercial fleet vehicles present a particular set of challenges to obtaining your rightful settlement. Full fleet and even smaller trucking companies have robust legal and insurance resources at their fingertips, not to mention experience protecting their interests in the aftermath of an accident.
In the aftermath of a serious truck collision, your priority should be working to heal your injuries and put your life back together. Leave the hard work of fighting the insurance companies to your specialized accident attorney. Thompson Law has the track record of success and tenacity to stand up to big businesses and help you collect your rightful compensation. Call us today to put Lion Law to work for you!
The Fast Facts:
18 Wheeler Realities and Risks
Tractor Trailers are categorized as any vehicle weighing between 26,001 and 80,000 pounds, spread over 18 conventional wheels.
At 65 miles per hour, it takes a tractor trailer 525 feet to stop.
Transportation Occupations are in the top 10 sources of employment for the city of Irving, representing 4.09% of citizens.
There were 3272 traffic crashes in Irving last year. If one ticket was given out per accident, it would nearly fill the indoor theater of the Toyota Music Factory Pavilion.
There were 433 fatal Truck-Trailer crashes in Texas in 2017, and 4657 nationwide, meaning Texas contributed 9.3% of the total for that year.
After gaining a Texas Driver license, you can take your Commercial Driver License (CDL) test in just 14 days after receiving your Commercial Learner Permit (CPL). A Class A CDL is what allows operation of an 18 wheeler.
The US’s largest trucking company, UPS, reported it’s 2017 revenue at $65.872 billion. That is equal to $274,040 per person in the city of Irving.
The Teamsters Union, which includes truck drivers, was founded over 100 years ago and is the 4th largest labor union.
If the other vehicle involved in your crash was an 18 wheeler or another commercial vehicle, call an attorney immediately. Companies who own commercial vehicles and 18 wheelers often have their own team of investigators who will arrive on the scene immediately working on the driver’s defense case. The sooner you involve an attorney of your own, the better your chances are of receiving compensation for your injuries and damages.
What Are Negligent Actions by Drivers of 18 Wheelers and Commercial Vehicles?Kirk2018-11-18T22:00:33-06:00
Drivers of 18 wheelers and other commercial vehicles are held to a higher standard of driving. If they neglect to turn on their flashing lights when they’re on the side of the road, don’t move over far enough onto the shoulder, don’t properly secure their cargo, or don’t leave enough clearance when making a left turn, and in many other cases, the driver could be considered negligent. If you want to know if the driver of the 18 wheeler involved in your case was negligent, contact a personal injury attorney.
The Trucking Company Just Called Me About My Accident. Are They Really Trying to Help Me?Kirk2018-11-18T22:01:15-06:00
No. They aren’t trying to help you. They’re trying to protect their drivers and reduce their costs. That’s why they have a team of lawyers ready to flock to the scene of any accident. Don’t accept any form of compensation until you talk to your attorney. Most victims of 18 wheeler crashes sustain more injuries than victims of normal crashes, and can receive higher compensation as a result. Don’t let them fool you into accepting a smaller payout for your injuries and damages. Your injuries could require years of medications and surgeries, and the company will try everything to avoid making huge payouts. Call your attorney and let them do the negotiating on your behalf.
Can I have a free consultation about my case?cbraun2020-01-23T13:00:51-06:00
Yes! Thompson Law is available24 hours a day, 7 days a weekto provide free consultations. If you have been injured in a truck wreck or car accident, hurt in a slip and fall incident, or otherwise injured from the negligence of another person or party, give us a call any time at 1-800-LION-LAW. We can speak to you over the phone, chat online through our website or social media outlets, or arrange an in-person meeting at your convenience. Our team is ready to help!
I’ve Been in an Accident With an 18 Wheeler. Who’s Responsible – The Company or The Driver?Kirk2020-01-23T12:18:56-06:00
Many times it can be the fault of both the driver and the 18 wheeler company. Truck drivers can be at fault just like any other motorist for failing to follow the rules of the road. However, 18 wheeler companies and their employees have federal laws they are required to follow that govern things like how many consecutive hours of driving are allowable, minimum numbers of resting hours between jobs, when and how to do inspections, and so on. Also, the 18 wheeler companies have specific duties and responsibilities regarding training their drivers and supervising their work. When trucking companies refuse to follow standard rules, regulations, and practices regarding the commercial and transportation industry, people can get hurt and companies can be found at fault for contributing to or causing the collision through their irresponsible decisions. An experienced 18-wheeler accident lawyer will know what violations to look for and how to hold both the driver and the company responsible for endangering the motoring public on the roads we all share.
I’m in the hospital or unable to travel. How do I meet with a lawyer?cbraun2020-01-23T13:01:23-06:00
Thompson Law is available 24/7 to provide free consultations and to sign up new clients. We can sign you up over the phone or we can send one of our experienced licensed investigators to meet you at the hospital or at your home if you prefer. Whether you live in Arlington, Ft. Worth, El Paso, McAllen, or even outside of the state of Texas, we are always here to assist you and provide the resources you need at a difficult time. We do the hard work for you so that you can focus on healing from your injuries.
I was just in an accident. What do I need to do first?cbraun2020-01-23T15:44:56-06:00
Being in a wreck, especially on the highway, can be a terrifying experience. Remember these 6 steps to make sure you are safe and to help preserve your legal case right from the start:
GET SAFE. Stop your vehicle/move it to a safe place if you are able. Stay close to the scene without obstructing traffic. Activate your emergency flashing lights to prevent other cars from striking you.
CALL 9-1-1. If you are seriously injured, be sure you request an ambulance when you call. A police report may become critical evidence in determining liability in your case. The police will respond to wrecks involving injuries but may not send a unit for cases involving property damage only.
TAKE PHOTOS. If you are able to safely do so, take photos of your vehicle, the other vehicle (including the license plate), and the surrounding scene of the accident. You will also want to photograph the other driver’s license and insurance card.
GATHER INFO. After making sure you and passengers are okay, exchange contact information and insurance information with the other driver.
FIND WITNESSES. If there are witnesses to the accident, take down their names and contact information. Their statements may help resolve any liability disputes.
CALL THOMPSON LAW. The experienced team of attorneys, investigators and paralegals are ready to assist you right away. You can even call us to meet you at the scene of an accident.
I was a passenger in an accident. Can I still claim damages?cbraun2020-01-23T13:01:51-06:00
Yes! Passengers in auto accidents are entitled to make claims for their damages and injuries too. As a negligence-free passenger, who you make a claim against (one or both drivers and their insurance companies), and what coverages are available (third-party liability, first-party coverages, and/or personal injury protection), depends on the specific facts and circumstances of the car wreck. Injured passengers should call the personal injury attorneys at Thompson Law to assist in navigating these complex issues so that they may receive the fair compensation they deserve.
After an accident, how do my medical expenses and other damages get paid?cbraun2020-01-23T13:02:50-06:00
An insurance company will not pay medical expenses or other damages as they come due; rather, after they have accepted liability, the insurance company will make a one-time, lump-sum final payment only at the end of your case. Dealing with medical expenses, and obtaining the proper medical care, after an accident can be tricky. But it does not have to be! Call the personal injury attorneys at Thompson Law, who can explain how to deal with the “day-of” hospital bills, how to continue to receive the care you need, and ultimately how to recover an appropriate settlement that takes care of your bills from the incident as well as fair and just compensation for you.
How long is the case process?cbraun2020-01-23T13:03:34-06:00
Let’s be honest: this isn’t a legal show on TV and your case will not settle in the next hour – or even tomorrow. The true answer is: it depends. We find that most cases settle within 7-10 months from date of incident; but the timeframe in your case could be shorter or longer depending on: the facts and circumstances of the accident; the length of time it takes you to complete medical treatment; and the character of the insurance company, or companies, involved in your case. In the event that your case cannot settle pre-litigation and it becomes necessary to file a lawsuit, that process alone can take 1 to 2 years due to the court system and legal process necessary to prepare for trial. But because so much of the timeline depends on the facts and circumstances of your unique case, call Thompson Law today to discuss.
18 Wheeler Crashes
Causes of Semi Trailer Collisions
Tractor trailers can be notoriously dangerous on the road. Their size, weight, and handling ability make them exceedingly precarious when they are not being operated with the driver’s full attention and uncompromised ability. Despite what we know about the damage these big rigs can cause when things go wrong, modern expectations of long-haul drivers can be extremely demanding, forcing the owner-operators and employees who drive these vehicles to cut corners in order to meet tight timetables and cover as much mileage as possible.
Driver Fatigue - Long hours, limited or off-cycle sleep opportunities, and physically demanding onload/offload contribute to physically and mentally tired drivers
Cargo issues - Overweight, unbalance, improperly loaded cargo can lead to leaks, spills, or handling difficulties
Road time limits – Max time limits for drivers are surprisingly high, only requiring a break after the 14th consecutive hour on the road.
Treacherous Roads - Inclement weather, icy roads, and low visibility are all complicating factors for every vehicle, but never so much so as with semis, which much longer amounts of time to stop or change course.
Mechanical – Large trucks with heavy cargo loads and vast amounts of mileage covered result in large amounts of required maintenance and repair, the most common being tire and engine issues.
Types of Tractor Trailer Crashes
Jackknife: When the rear wheels of the trailer lock up and the trailer swings to create a sharp angle with the truck
Rear End: Due to the weight of a trailer and cargo, these trucks are much harder to stop than cars, SUVs, or other standard vehicles
Broadside: Also called a T-bone collision, one automobile collides with the side panel of another
Sideswipe: This type of impact occurs commonly with large trucks that require wide turns
Rollover: Since the requirement for antilock brakes went into effect, rollovers have surpassed jackknifing as the most dangerous semi accidents
Head On: Often due to fatigue or drowsiness resulting in lane wandering
Single Vehicle: One tractor trailer colliding with debris, stationary objects or going off the road, resulting in damage or injury
Multi-Vehicle: One or more semi trucks colliding with one or more vehicles or objects, and one of the deadliest forms of vehicular collision
As Irving Grows, so does the city’s need for 18 Wheelers
With the growth Irving has experienced in recent years, it comes as no surprise that more deliveries than ever are shipping in and out of this prospering area. Local attractions likeToyota Music Factory, Four SeasonsLas Colinas, Irving Convention Center at Las Colinas, Irving Arts Center, and more, plus the proximity to DFW draw huge concentrations of crowds for special and seasonal events, and just a brief excursion through Irving’s roadways at the wrong time can leave you stranded in a stand-still jam.
With the 10.8% population increase Irving experienced in less than 7 years, and the addition of residential and commercial developments, tractor trailer traffic has increased accordingly. Unfortunately, with this increase in traffic, has come an even higher rate of accident. In the period from 2013-2017 while the population increased by 4.99%, the number of commercial vehicle accidents (CMVs) increased by 61%.In 2019, Irving has already experienced some of the state’s most serious and surprisingcollisions.
After an 18 Wheeler Accident
What to do When You Have Been Hit by a Tractor Trailer
If there are serious injuries at the scene, the first thing to do is call 911 for emergency medical help. Speedy response to take care of those injured on the scene is truly a matter of life and death in 18 wheeler accidents. Upon arrival, emergency professionals such as EMS, police and firefighters will direct the next steps to best take care of people and property.
Recording the effects of the accident accurately is extremely important to arming your Thompson Law team.Having the best information possible as they represent you in your claim can make all the difference in the results. Take pictures, record allIDinformation, and comply fully with emergency responders to help them ensure accuracy and detail in theirreports.
Never make a statement to any representatives from insurance companies or the companies associated with the fleet vehicle. Do not apologize to anyone involved in the collision, because even as a figure of speech this can be construed as an admission of guilt.
Leave the scene carefully by instruction of the emergency professionals. As soon as you safely make a call, reach out to Lion Law (844) 308-8180for help with your next steps to rightful repair and recovery.
Injuries Resulting from 18 Wheeler Accidents
The size of these vehicles results in some of the most devastating and impactful damage that occurs in roadway accidents. Tractor trailers cause catastrophic collisions frequently involving multiple vehicles. Common injuries from an 18 wheeler accident may be:
Broken and fractured bones
Whiplash, muscle injuries, sprains
Cuts, scratches, bruises
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Spine and disk injuries
The single important thing you can do following a serious 18 wheeler accident is take care of your health. At Lion Law, we want every client to recover as fully as possible and receive the best compensation possible. Please feel free to reach out anytime 24/7(844) 308-8180. We are here to help, and look forward to assisting you in your steps forward to repair and recovery.
The Thompson Law Difference
If you have been injured in an 18 Wheeler accident in Irving, the time to call Lion Law is right now! Your dedicated team will guide you through the process of seeking treatment, protect your interests in negotiations with all at-fault parties, and go to battle for the compensation you deserve.
Don’t be afraid to stand up to the big trucking companies and insurance companies. After a truck wreck you need an expert advocate and a tenacious attorney to have your back. Ryan “The Lion” Thompson is the truck accident lawyer who can make all the difference for your case.
Texas law limits the time you have to file a claim so reach out now to speak with one of our knowledgeablerepresentatives about your accident. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, the Lion Law team (844) 308-8180is here to help.
Contact us for a
Dallas: 3300 Oak Lawn Ave., Suite 300, Dallas, TX 75219
Fort Worth: 5500 E Loop 820 S, Suite 109, Fort Worth, TX 76119