Tractor Trailer Cases
Commercial trucks are a common sight on the roads in Georgia, and while they allow companies to transport goods in a cost-effective and efficient manner, they also pose a risk of harm to all other travelers. Due to their immense size and weight, when commercial trucks are involved in accidents, they typically cause catastrophic injuries. If you were injured or suffered the loss of a family member due to a truck accident, it is critical to retain an attorney who will fight to help you protect your interests. At Cook Law Group, our Gainesville truck accident lawyers work to hold truck drivers and the companies that employ them accountable for the harm caused by their negligence.Common Causes of Truck Accidents
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Regulations, which aim to reduce truck accidents and ensure that commercial trucks are operated in a safe manner, set forth the duties imposed on commercial truck drivers and companies that own commercial trucks. The FMCSA Regulations establish the maximum amount of time that drivers can stay behind the wheel without taking a break, maximum truck weights, and obligations regarding truck inspections and maintenance. When drivers or trucking companies violate these regulations, it often leads to accidents.
For example, drivers who have logged too many hours behind the wheel are often fatigued and unable to drive safely. Additionally, when drivers or trucking companies fail to conduct regular inspections, they often miss defects that cause safety concerns and ultimately lead to accidents. Truck accidents are also caused by driving at excessive speeds, failing to check blind spots, or unevenly distributed loads, which cause trucks to tip over. The truck accident attorneys at our Gainesville firm can investigate the specific cause of your crash.Lawsuits Arising Out of Truck Accidents
While there are numerous scenarios that may bring about a truck accident, the primary factor that causes most accidents is driver negligence. As a result, in most claims based on truck accidents, the plaintiff will name the truck driver as the defendant and will set forth a negligence claim in pursuit of damages. In Georgia, a plaintiff asserting a negligence claim against a defendant must prove that the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty to exercise reasonable care but breached the duty. In truck accident cases, the duty owed may be the general duty to drive in a safe manner that is imposed on all motorists, a specific duty imposed by the FMCSA Regulations, or a combination of both. The plaintiff must also prove that the defendant’s breach of the duty caused the accident and that the accident caused the plaintiff to suffer measurable damages, such as bodily harm and property damage.
Usually, truck drivers do not own the trucks that they operate but instead drive the trucks as employees of trucking companies. Thus, in cases in which a defendant driver was acting as an employee at the time of the accident, the plaintiff and their Gainesville truck accident attorney may be able to pursue a vicarious liability claim against the driver’s employer for the driver’s negligence. Generally, a plaintiff must demonstrate that a driver was in the course and scope of employment at the time of the accident to prove a vicarious liability claim. In some situations, the defendant employer may also be directly liable for the plaintiff’s harm. For example, the plaintiff might be able to show that the defendant employer knew or should have known that the defendant driver posed a risk of harm to other people but permitted the defendant driver to operate a truck regardless. Employers who fail to check the background of their drivers or retain drivers whom they know are dangerous can be held liable for punitive damages and attorneys’ fees.Speak to an Experienced Georgia Attorney
Commercial truck drivers have a duty to protect other motorists by driving in a safe manner. If you were injured in a truck accident, you should speak to an attorney regarding the claims that you may be able to pursue in a civil lawsuit. The experienced attorneys at Cook Law Group assist victims in truck accident cases in cities such as Gainesville, Albany, Columbus, Savannah, Macon, Augusta, Athens, and Valdosta. We have handled many trucking cases and have repeatedly been asked to speak at seminars on such cases. In most cases we perform a full reconstruction of the collision to determine exactly what caused the wreck and what would have prevented it. You can contact the truck accident lawyers at our Gainesville firm by calling us at 678-928-3899 or using our form online to set up a meeting.