An immediate investigation into a commercial truck accident by authorities may produce critical data for your truck accident attorney to be used in your personal injury or wrongful death case. Truck accident cases are always a bit tricky because of the need to determine who was responsible for the accident, what caused the accident and who is liable for the damages.
Harrell & Harrell, P.A., will provide a free case consultation with no cost or obligation to you. If your truck accident attorney determines you do have a case, a successful negotiation for a settlement in a truck accident case could occur at any point, including:
Since the truck and the trailer used for commercial shipping may belong to different entities (or may have been leased separately), determining ownership of the truck and hauler is an important and sometimes difficult first step. In most cases, a search of the vehicle’s DOT# (Department of Transportation Number) and MC# (Motor Carrier Number) found on the cab of the truck proves to be the most valuable link to legal ownership.
After a major truck accident, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) will usually conduct a complete accident investigation. Pertinent information taken from the truck’s cab is easily used to identify the manufacturer, make, model and Gross Vehicle Weight Rating for the commercial vehicle. The investigator’s bits and pieces of the accident are coupled with public records, such as insurance coverage, to establish ownership for the determination of exact liability and responsibility for compensation of accident damages. Based on the details of the investigator’s report, the Florida State Attorney’s office may choose to review the case for possible criminal violations by the truck driver and/or the trucking company who commissioned the payload.
A truck accident attorney knows the driver of any truck used for commerce is required to keep a log of his or her activities. The driver’s log can be useful in determining the driver’s compliance with state and federal regulations regarding the number of hours driving time, total number of rest periods, the vehicle’s inspection dates and the manufacturer’s recommended gross vehicle weight. Overloading the truck’s trailer is a violation that is often linked to more serious truck and transportation accidents. Since the manufacturer’s information advises the truck’s operator as to the maximum load (gross weight rating), liability may be established if the vehicle’s payload exceeded the combined weight for braking.
A truck driver must have a commercial driving license (CDL) to operate any truck and trailer with a gross vehicle weight of 26,000 lbs. or more. He or she must have passed a driver’s road test and be certified for the vehicle he or she is driving. Prior to hiring a commercial truck driver, the employer is responsible for a background check to determine the driving history, criminal history and employment history of the applicant truck driver. A current medical examination is also a legal duty of any employer before they put an individual behind the wheel of a truck used for commercial purposes. At Harrell & Harrell, we have experienced truck accident attorneys who understand all the legal requirements for commercial trucking.
If you’ve been injured or damaged (as the result of a trucking accident) by someone else’s negligence, unreasonable behavior or careless acts, call our Jacksonville office today at 904-251-1111 or 1-800-251-1111. Our experienced staff of truck accident attorneys will determine the best course of legal action for your personal injury or wrongful death claim.
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