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Three San Bernardino residents were killed by a big rig on the 110 block of 5th street in October of 2019. Commercial trucking accidents have the potential to cause serious injuries and even fatalities. Determining liability after any trucking accident, especially when fatalities are involved, can become a logistical nightmare. 

Trucking accidents are not like car accidents. Truck accidents tend to be more catastrophic from an injury perspective. Furthermore, they are also more complex from a legal standpoint, as multiple parties can all be held liable and because they involve more costly commercial trucking policies.

Truck accidents are caused by a diverse range of circumstances. Depending on what actually happened, the truck driver, the trucking company, or even the truck manufacturer can all be held liable for an accident.

Furthermore, even a driver who was injured in a commercial trucking accident 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 trucking accident may still be able to recover some damages.

If you have suffered injuries after a trucking accident in the city of San Bernardino, you may be entitled to compensation for your

medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and possibly more. Please don’t hesitate to contact us 24/7 at (909) 787-2178 or feel free to email us at [email protected] to schedule a free consultation with our experienced, caring and compassionate legal team.  At West Coast Trial Lawyers, we are always here to answer any questions you may have about truck accident claims in the city of San Bernardino.

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 trucking accident.

  1. 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.
  1. 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 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. 
  1. 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.
  1. Always Be Patient: Sometimes you just have to accept that trucks have no other choice but to move slowly. Honking or changing lanes constantly 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 for the recovery of financial compensation for their injuries. 

There are three (3) elements considered in determining if a truck driver was negligent: 

  • 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 behind the wheel. For example, a duty of care for a truck driver requires a driver to watch for pedestrians, other vehicles, and obstacles. It also means controlling the movement and speed of their truck. Overall, a duty of care requires caution while operating the truck.

What is strict liability as it relates to a San Bernardino trucking 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 trucking company could have failed to perform the 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. 

Financial Compensation For San Bernardino Trucking Accidents

Commercial trucking accidents happen. However, if you were injured because of someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. 

Below is a brief explanation of financial compensation a San Bernardino truck accident victim may be entitled to. 

Damages are a type of monetary award that is determined by a court of law to compensate a truck accident victim for property loss or injuries sustained as a result of someone’s negligence. 

Economic Damages: Economic damages are awarded to compensate truck accident victims for losses that a dollar amount can objectively be attached to. Economic damages are calculated by determining the out of pocket losses an aggrieved individual has or will expect to incur as a result of their injuries. 

A few examples of economic losses include medical bills, loss of earning capacity, lost wages, and more.

Non-Economic Damages:

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

Call us today at (909) 787-2178 or email [email protected] to schedule a free consultation with our experienced, caring and compassionate legal team.


If you have been injured in an accident, you can count on the legal team at West Coast Trial Lawyers to fight for your rights every step of the way. Contact us today to schedule your free case evaluation with a personal injury attorney.
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