A fully loaded commercial truck can weigh up to 30 times as much as a car, so if the two collide the driver of the car is at far more risk of severe injury. If you have suffered significant injuries in a truck accident in Nashville, near the Vanderbilt hospital area or any part of Middle Tennessee, it is essential that you have an experienced personal injury attorney at your side, one with comprehensive knowledge of local, state, and federal law, and one who is dedicated to fighting energetically to win you the compensation you deserve. Cummings Law, in Nashville, is just such a practice. When you don’t know where to turn, turn to us. Don’t let an insurance agent take advantage of you as they work to protect their company’s profit margin. Brian Cummings will protect your interests and your finances while you concentrate on healing from your recent trauma.
Reasons for Truck Accidents
Though some of the reasons for truck accidents are the same as the reasons for car accidents, truckers are at greater risk of being involved in an accident because:
- Truckers constantly travel long distances and so are simply on the road for more hours
- Truck parts and mechanisms usually get far more wear than car parts
- Trucking companies sometimes fail to keep up with their required vehicle inspections
- Trucks take longer periods of time to come to a stop
- Trucks, because of their tremendous size and weight, are more difficult to maneuver
- Truckers work long hours, are pressured to meet deadlines, and too often work with insufficient breaks for nourishment or rest
- Trucks are sometimes improperly loaded and so more likely to tip or be hard to control
- Truckers have sometimes been given insufficient training for their jobs
Too many truck drivers are overworked and dangerously fatigued during their work hours — which frequently extend through the night when driving is generally more difficult because of limited visibility. Too often, in fear of dozing, truckers take stimulant drugs to stay aware which can easily lead to drug abuse or addiction.
Not only does the trucking profession often create problems for its drivers, truck drivers, because they spend a great deal of time in their vehicles, are often at fault themselves for:
- Failing to take required rest periods
- Speeding, tailgating, weaving among lanes
- Driving while distracted (texting, talking on cell phones, eating)
- Driving while intoxicated or impaired by drugs
- Making illegal turns, not obeying traffic signals
It should be noted that truck drivers, because of the grave risk they pose to those in cars, are held to higher standards than other drivers. If a truck driver is found to be intoxicated, for example, his or her blood alcohol content (BAC) must be .04 or lower, whereas the cut-off for drivers of cars is .08.
Other Reasons for Trucking Accidents
In addition to the potential negligence of trucking companies and their drivers, there are times when bad weather, poorly maintained roadways, or objects or animals on the roadway, cause or contribute to truck accidents. Unfortunately, trucking accidents, once they occur, are all too often exacerbated by spillage of truck contents onto the road, contents that may be slippery, flammable, or toxic. There is also always the chance that the truck has a defective part, in which case the manufacturer, rather than the trucking company or individual driver, may be liable for the accident. When you bring your truck accident claim to Cummings Law, we will ferret out the cause of your injuries and hold the responsible person, company, or government agency accountable.
Types of Compensation You Can Receive for Truck Accident Injuries
The two most typical types of compensation you can receive for the personal injuries following a truck accident are:
These are awarded to reimburse the calculable costs you have incurred, or will incur, as a result of your injuries, including:
- Medical, surgical, rehabilitative, and pharmaceutical out-of-pocket expenses
- Lost wages for the period of time you are unable to work
- Lost future wages
- Long-term disability and long-term care
- Property damage (such as loss of your vehicle)
These are damages more difficult to assign monetary value, but it is, nonetheless, extremely important that you receive them if justice is to be served. Brian Cummings is experienced at determining non-economic damages based on strict legal guidelines to compensate you for:
- Physical pain
- Emotional anguish
- Impairment or disfigurement
- Loss of limbs
- Loss of sight or hearing
- Loss of consortium or companionship
- Loss of enjoyment of life
This variety of compensation is only awarded if the party who harmed you behaved in an especially malicious, intentional, fraudulent or reckless manner. Examples of such cases are ones in which the defendant was inebriated, drug-impaired or otherwise engaging in criminal behavior at the time of the accident. Punitive damages are designed both to punish the offender and to prevent others from behaving in a similarly abhorrent manner.
How Fault Is Determined in Tennessee
Because the laws determining fault in truck accidents differ from one state to the other, it is imperative that you have a truck accident attorney who has comprehensive knowledge of Tennessee fault laws in your corner. In Tennessee, where Modified Comparative Fault prevails, it is possible for both parties to be found partially at fault for a truck accident. As long as you are found to be less than 50 percent responsible for the crash, you are entitled to receive some compensation. To illustrate, if you are found to bear 10 percent of the responsibility for the accident and the court awards you $1,000,000, you will receive $900,000 (the awarded damages minus 10 percent). The only catch is that if you are found to be 50 percent or more responsible for the truck accident in Tennessee, you will receive nothing in damages.
Contact A Nashville Truck Accident Attorney
If you have been injured in a truck accident in Middle Tennessee, reaching out to Cummings Law is a wise move. We have the resources to accumulate relevant physical or photographic evidence of the accident, interview witnesses, examine medical records, and, if necessary, hire experts to testify on your behalf. Brian Cummings is an agile negotiator as well as a sharp litigator, so in many cases, we can negotiate a just settlement and avoid going to trial altogether. Whether or not litigation is necessary, we are determined to obtain the highest possible compensation for you and your family. We understand the calamity you have been through and will treat you with the compassion and respect you deserve. We can be reached by phone or by filling out a contact form on our website.