San Bernardino Truck Accident Attorney
Get Help With Your Truck Accident Case
Commercial trucking accidents have the potential to cause serious injuries and even fatalities. Determining liability after any truck accident, especially when fatalities are involved, can become a logistical nightmare.
Truck accidents are not like car accidents. They tend to be more catastrophic from an injury perspective. Furthermore, they are complex from a legal standpoint, as multiple parties can all be held liable, such as a truck driver, other drivers, truck manufacturer, or the truck company. Even a driver who was injured due to strong impact can share a degree of responsibility for causing the accident. However, it is important to know that an injured driver who is found partially responsible for causing a truck accident may still be able to recover some damages.
If you have suffered injuries after a truck accident, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and possibly more. At West Coast Trial Lawyers, our San Bernardino truck accident attorneys have over 60 years of collective legal experience in handling personal injury cases. With our track record of winning over $1 billion in settlements for our clients, we have been recognized as one of the top personal injury law firms in San Bernardino.
Contact our 24/7 legal team today by calling (909) 787-2178 or emailing [email protected] to schedule a free consultation at our San Bernardino personal injury law firm.
4 Tips for Safely Driving Around a Truck
Before discussing how responsibility for a commercial trucking accident is determined, below are four important tips for minimizing the possibility of a truck accident.
- Never cut off a truck. Cutting off any kind of vehicle on the freeway is always a big risk. However, it is especially dangerous to cut off a semi-truck. Cutting off a truck may end up forcing a truck driver to suddenly slow down to avoid hitting you. Large trucks do not have the ability to react in time to sudden changes on the road. Even a skilled driver may still end up hitting a vehicle that cut them off, which can cause serious property damage and injuries.
- Stay out of the blind zone. Commercial trucks have large blind spots. The rule is that if you cannot see the truck driver in their side view mirror, they likely cannot see you either. If possible, you must slow down or speed up when in a driver’s blind spot and always make sure you are visible to a truck driver.
- Never tailgate. Tailgating a truck is worse than driving in a truck driver’s blind spot because a trucker driver has no way of seeing you. If an accident were to occur while you were tailgating, you may end up underneath the truck’s body. It is recommended to always maintain a safe distance from the truck, especially when you are following a truck uphill.
- Always be patient. Sometimes you just have to accept that trucks have no other choice but to move slowly. Constantly honking or changing lanes will not accomplish anything and may only create unnecessary distractions for other drivers.
Truck Accident Liability: Negligence or Strict Liability?
Determining liability for a commercial trucking accident typically involves one, and sometimes both, of the following two legal theories: negligence or strict liability.
What is negligence as it relates to a San Bernardino trucking accident? According to California negligence law, truck drivers who are negligent can be held liable for any injuries or losses caused to others as a result. Therefore, drivers who were injured by negligent truck drivers can file a personal injury lawsuit to recover compensation for their injuries.
There are three (3) elements considered in determining if a truck driver was negligent:
- The truck driver owed the accident victim a duty of care.
- The truck driver breached their duty of care.
- The truck driver’s breach was a significant factor that caused a victim’s injuries and property loss.
What is a duty of care? A duty of care is a legal requirement for every truck driver to be mindful of other drivers and always use reasonable caution while on the road. For example, a duty of care for a truck driver requires them to watch out for pedestrians, vehicles, and other obstacles. It also means controlling the movement and speed of their truck.
What is strict liability as it relates to a truck accident? Some commercial trucking accidents are not caused by truck driver negligence. For example, if a commercial truck’s brakes were to malfunction and cause a collision, several parties can be held liable. It’s possible that the brakes were defective. The truck company could have failed to perform necessary maintenance to make sure the brakes were working.
Please consult with an experienced San Bernardino truck accident attorney to determine whether you can bring a claim based on a theory of strict liability.
Available Damages for a Truck Accident
Commercial trucking accidents happen. However, if you were injured because of someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. There are two types of damages a victim may recover from a truck accident, which are called economic damages and non-economic damages.
Economic damages are awarded to compensate truck accident victims for losses that a dollar amount can objectively be attached to. It is calculated by determining the out-of-pocket losses an aggrieved individual has or will expect to incur as a result of their injuries. Recoverable economic damages an individual may be granted include medical bills, loss of earning capacity, and property damage.
Non-economic damages are awarded to compensate truck accident victims for losses that are thought of as subjective. Non-economic damages may include compensation for loss of enjoyment of life, emotional distress, and pain and suffering.
West Coast Trial Lawyers Is Always Here to Help
If you or a loved one were involved in a truck accident, West Coast Trial Lawyers has San Bernardino truck accident attorneys with over 60 years of collective legal experience in handling personal injury cases. We are confident that we will get you the maximum compensation you deserve for your losses.