Despite our best efforts to drive safely, many people experience auto collisions through no fault of their own. If that accident involved a truck, victims may find themselves dealing with serious injuries and extensive property damage. This traumatic experience leaves survivors and victims reeling. It’s normal to feel overwhelmed by what to do next. If you suffered injuries in a trucking accident, seek the legal advice of a qualified Atlanta truck accident lawyer. You have rights and may be entitled to receive compensation for the harm you suffered. Read on to learn more about trucking accidents and what you may be entitled to recover.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
Truck accidents can occur for any number of reasons. Most crashes stem from some form of driver error, which is why it’s so vital to retain an Atlanta truck accident attorney. Your attorney gets to work immediately to investigate the cause of the accident and gather relevant evidence to establish the truck driver’s liability. The most common causes of truck accidents include:
- Driver fatigue. Truck drivers should pull off the road or seek rest if they feel tired. Driving while fatigued can be as dangerous as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol because it limits a driver’s reaction time and awareness of their surroundings.
- Driving under the influence. Despite being against the law, unfortunately, many drivers get behind the wheel while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If it’s determined that the driver who caused your accident was also under the influence, they will also likely face criminal charges for their actions.
- Distracted driving. Truck drivers often find themselves in unfamiliar locations and must refer to their GPS or phones to find their way. However, they should never do this while driving. Looking down at your phone for even three seconds equates to driving the length of a football field blindfolded.
- Failure to maintain. Trucking companies and drivers have a duty to monitor the condition of their trucks. If any issues arise, they must address them immediately before putting the truck out on the roadway. Blown-out tires, faulty brakes, and other mechanical issues frequently cause avoidable accidents.
- Improper loading. Truck drivers should be trained to properly load their trucks to avoid imbalances that can cause a driver to lose control of the vehicle. Your attorney investigates whether the truck was improperly loaded and whether a driver or a cargo company’s negligence contributed to the collision.
Atlanta truck accident lawyers work to determine the cause of your truck collision. Once the cause is determined, it is easier to establish liability and support your claim for recovery.
Common Injuries Suffered in Truck Accidents
Due to the size differential between commercial trucks and passenger vehicles, these collisions can be especially devastating. While injuries may range in severity, the most common injuries seen by a truck accident attorney in Atlanta, GA, include the following:
- Traumatic brain injuries,
- Internal injuries,
- Internal bleeding,
- Spinal cord injuries,
- Back injuries,
- Broken bones,
- Severe lacerations and bruising,
- Disfiguration, and
Recovery from severe and catastrophic injuries can range from months to years. Some victims may never get back to how they were before an accident. It’s crucial to seek out a truck accident attorney in Atlanta to assist you in your case. You may be facing an inability to work and a lifetime of medical needs. Obtaining the compensation to cover those costs helps to alleviate unnecessary stress and pain for you and your family.
Recoverable Damages After a Truck Accident
Atlanta truck accident lawyers help their clients recover in the form of compensatory damages and, in special cases, punitive damages. There are two types of compensatory damages, economic and noneconomic, covering various losses typically suffered by injured victims in personal injury cases.
Economic damages are direct financial losses directly resulting from the car accident. Common examples of economic damages include the following:
- Medical expenses,
- Lost wages,
- Loss of future earnings,
- Costs for replacing or repairing damaged property,
- Payment for household chores needed while injured, including child care services and cleaning services, and
- Expenses for equipment needed due to your injury, such as wheelchairs.
Receipts, invoices, and pay stubs provide your attorney with assistance on how to calculate these losses and also support your demand for recovery.
Noneconomic damages are more difficult to calculate as they compensate a victim for subjective injuries resulting from an accident. Common examples include:
- Pain and suffering,
- Emotional distress,
- Loss of consortium,
- Loss of enjoyment of life, and
- Permanent injury or disability.
Despite the difficulty in proving these damages, these losses are vital to a victim’s recovery.
Courts award punitive damages not to compensate victims for their losses, but rather to punish the wrongdoer for their conduct. It must be shown that the liable party acted in a willful or particularly egregious manner in causing the accident. Courts do not award punitive damages often. For example, a judge may require a driver who caused an accident while intoxicated to pay punitive damages if there were other present factors, such as the driver had multiple drunk driving offenses. Georgia law does not cap Punitive damages in personal injury cases and awards can sometimes be substantially larger than compensatory damages.
Seek the assistance of an Atlanta truck accident lawyer to prove these losses and recover the compensation to which you are entitled.
How Long Do I Have to File My Claim?
It’s important to remember that there is a statute of limitations for filing any potential claim you may have against the truck driver that caused your accident. Failing to file within this statutory period bars a person from filing their claim. You never want to lose your opportunity to pursue justice for the harm you suffered due to someone else’s negligence. In Georgia, the statute of limitations for personal injury and other civil cases is two years from the date of the accident. There are rare situations where the statute of limitations may be “tolled” or delayed. Even if you may be permitted extra time due to one of these exceptions, it’s important to speak to an attorney as soon as possible to avoid missing your day in court.
Contact an Atlanta Truck Accident Lawyer
At Evans Litigation and Trial, LLC, those injured in truck accidents receive the benefit of a dedicated trucking attorney serving clients across Georgia. Our legal team is committed and passionately focused on helping truck accident victims and their families. We provide relentless advocacy and secure rightful compensation for those affected by devastating trucking accidents. We understand the hardships you may be facing and are ready to fight for your rights. Contact us today by phone or email to learn how we can help guide you through the complexities of trucking accident cases.