Truck accidents have a well-earned reputation for being incredibly destructive. Large blind spots, isolated drivers, and truck weigh-ins upwards of 35,000 pounds mean that sharing the road with a semi-truck exposes motorists, pedestrians, and bicyclists to a host of risks. Due to their sheer size, even an unladen semi-truck can effectively become a weapon that causes life-threatening injuries and extensive property damage.
A severe West Palm Beach truck accident can leave vulnerable road users permanently disabled or disfigured and struggling to make out-of-pocket payments on medical debt. It’s not uncommon for a truck accident to irreparably impact a victim’s mental health as well due to the intensity of a violent crash or loss of a loved one involved in the accident.
The combination of grueling physical recovery and emotional distress may cause truck accident survivors to miss work and further diminish their capacity to pay back unexpected expenses. If you have been injured in a West Palm Beach truck accident due to someone else’s negligence, it’s time to seek out professional legal counsel.
KMW Legal Can Help With Your Truck Accident Claim
Truck accident lawsuits are notorious for their complexity. Many parties can be liable and insurance carriers know that they may be on the hook for a large settlement, often making them more motivated to fight tooth and nail to diminish the damages they are held liable for.
Attempting to undertake the workload of a truck accident lawsuit on your own not only adds unneeded stress to your life, but also puts you at risk of compromising your ability to secure maximum compensation. You need a truck accident lawyer who has the expertise and work ethic to handle complicated cases, even when that means taking them to trial.
After a decade of practicing law, the attorneys of Keller, Melchiorre & Walsh have built a reputation for securing our clients favorable settlements that encompass both the financial and non-economic losses you have suffered. KMW Legal will relentlessly pursue fair compensation with a detailed approach tailored to your specific truck accident case.
Our team encourages you to schedule a free, no-obligation strategy session with us to give us the opportunity to explain your rights and legal options for compensation.
Common Causes of Trucks Accidents
The National Safety Council reports that “107,000 large trucks were involved in crashes resulting in an injury”, and 4,842 were connected to fatal accidents. Due to their capacity for destruction, semi-trucks carry an inherent risk when they share the road with other motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians. Many of the common causes of truck accidents are preventable, as they are based on negligent practices.
Drowsy Truck Drivers Threaten Lives
Truck drivers drive long stretches and often spend weeks away from their families on the road. The combination of isolation and taxing hours can result in a fatigued driver who is still under the pressure of a deadline to transport goods from one place to another.
Studies have shown that drowsy driving can be just as dangerous as drunk driving, and the FMCSA warns that many so-called tricks are ineffectual. Fatigued truck drivers can collide with other road users or run them off the road if they fall asleep at the wheel.
Drunk Driving Contributes to Serious Truck Accidents
Truck drivers have to be highly cognizant of their surroundings because they often have less room to maneuver around unexpected obstacles like road debris or have less time to react to another vehicle’s sudden braking. However, driving while drunk compromises cognitive function and a driver’s physical coordination. This can delay reaction times, causing truck drivers to ignore lane striping, rear-end stopped traffic, or run red lights.
Distracted Truck Drivers Are a Road Hazard
Trucks are capable of crushing virtually any car, pedestrian, bicyclist, or motorcycle in their path, making rubbernecking, texting while driving, or speeding particularly dangerous. A truck driver who becomes distracted by navigation equipment or a phone call may miss a car’s blinker indicating their intent to merge, or a pedestrian walking on the shoulder of the road.
Risky Manuervering Can Lead to Devastating Truck Accidents
Drivers who are improperly or inadequately trained put themselves and others at risk when they engage in risky behavior. When a truck driver makes unsafe lane changes or merges without looking, they are capable of running passenger vehicles or motorcyclists off the road or crushing them under their weight.
On top of that, trucks are physically limited in their ability to adapt to changing road conditions. Large trucks have a restricted turning radius and much longer braking distances. If a driver attempts to turn too tightly or brake too quickly they may cause a jackknife accident which creates a deadly obstacle for oncoming traffic.
Truck Accidents May Be Caused by Mechanical Failures
When manufacturers produce defective cargo restraints, faulty brake parts, or unreliable trailer hitches, the consequences can be catastrophic. Loose cargo can fall out of a truck or shift inside affecting the truck’s stability. Defective parts like faulty brakes or steering can lead to a loss of control of the truck.
Types of West Palm Beach Truck Accidents
Despite numerous safeguards for truck drivers, some number of truck accidents are bound to occur due to human error. Unfortunately, negligence can often have a high price in these types of truck accidents. Even if the truck spins out of control and doesn’t initially collide with another vehicle, it can leave a trail of devastation in its wake.
Other motorists may be unable to stop in time and become trapped under the trailer of the semi-truck, or they may collide with other cars and pedestrians in an attempt to evade the roadblock created by the wrecked truck.
Examples of Truck Accidents:
- Override accident
- Underride accident
- Rollover accident
- Runaway Truck
- Lost Load
- Rear-End Collision
- Head-on Collision
Truck Accident Lawsuits Are Subject to a Statute of Limitations
If you intend to file a personal injury lawsuit against a negligent truck driver, manufacturer, or owner, you have a limited time frame to do so. Florida Law dictates that claims based on negligence must be filed within 4 years of the incident, with some accommodations for extenuating circumstances. Insurance carriers for truck companies won’t hesitate to use filing deadlines to their advantage throughout the claims process to get your lawsuit thrown out.
Truck Accidents Can Cause Devastating Injuries or Fatalities
When trucks collide with smaller vehicles or even pedestrians the consequences are often tragic. The size of large trucks creates a dangerous combination of limited maneuverability and unstoppable momentum, inflicting a more traumatic impact on another in its path.
Common Truck Accident Injuries
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Traumatic Brain Injuries
- Disfigurement and Paralysis
- Dental and Mouth Injuries
- Fractures, Lacerations, and Contusions
- Severe Burns
- Crush Injuries
- Loss of Limb or Organ
- Neck and Back Injuries
After a traumatic truck accident, you may require months on bedrest after back surgery, develop social anxiety after being disfigured, lose your ability to walk, or require anti-rejection medication after an organ transplant. Even after taking some time to recover, many of KMW Legal’s clients are still unaware of the true magnitude of the future medical complications they will suffer, let alone the cost.
As experienced West Palm Beach truck accident lawyers, KMW Legal has in-depth knowledge of the extent of expenses you are likely to incur as a result of your injuries, which allows us to make informed recommendations when it comes to pursuing compensation in a truck accident settlement.
What Damages Can I Claim in a Truck Accident Lawsuit?
Many clients are surprised to find that they can claim expenses as compensatory damages beyond just medical bills and lost wages in a truck accident lawsuit. The principle behind compensatory damages is that you should be no worse off financially because of injuries or damages suffered due to someone else’s negligence.
For example, you may have had to hire a housekeeper, install a ramp in your home, or purchase a new vehicle to accommodate your wheelchair. You may even suffer from anxiety attacks or chronic pain after a truck accident that was caused by the negligence of a distracted truck driver, careless manufacturer, or sloppy cargo loader.
Similarly, if you have lost a loved one in a truck accident due to someone else’s recklessness, you should not be left to shoulder the sudden burden of burial costs and medical bills.
Common Examples of Truck Accident Damages
- Property Damage
- Totaled Vehicles
- Damage to Infrastructure or Homes
- Damage from Toxic and Harmful Chemicals Released
- Severe Injuries
- Permanent Disability or Disfigurement
- Medical Bills
- Hospital Stays
- Emotional Distress and PTSD
- Pain and Suffering
- Mobility Accommodations and Renovations
- Financial Setbacks
- Lost Wages
- Lost Earning Capacity
- Job Retraining
- Missed Promotions
- Wrongful Death
- Loss of Companionship
- Diminished Household Income
- Funeral Expenses
Damages like these are eligible for compensation in a truck accident lawsuit provided that your lawyer is able to demonstrate the connection between the negligent party’s actions, your injury, and the costs you have incurred. When there are multiple contributing causes, determining liability is best left to a qualified truck accident lawyer who can accurately apportion fault and corresponding responsibility for damages.
Who Pays in a Truck Accident Lawsuit?
In a truck accident lawsuit, there can be many sources of negligence. Many people immediately assume that the truck driver must be at fault, but this is not always the case. Manufacturers who design or produce faulty or defective parts can be accused of negligence in a product liability lawsuit if their failure contributed to the truck accident, resulting in injuries, and subsequent damages.
Cargo Loader and Maintenance Provider Truck Accident Liability
Cargo loaders who neglect to properly secure goods can be held liable for causing crashes, such as a lost load truck accident, if an unbalanced or unsecured load caused injuries. In addition to the makers and loaders of the truck, the owner of the truck can be held accountable if they failed to conduct regular maintenance inspections that would have caught mechanical issues with the truck.
Trucking Company Liability for Truck Accidents
The truck owner or the company that employs the truck driver may be found at fault if they did not provide satisfactory training, pushed a driver to work beyond safe limits, or were negligent in their hiring practices, resulting in an unqualified truck driver on the road. One or more of these parties may ultimately be held financially responsible for the damages of the injured party, but to protect your ability to recover a settlement you should seek a skilled lawyer with experience settling truck accident claims.
How Can a Truck Accident Attorney Help Me?
A serious truck accident can upend your health and finances. You may be left grappling with the loss of a loved one, struggling to make ends meet due to lost wages, or recovering from surgery after unexpected complications. However, injured truck accident victims should be aware that major trucking companies and their insurance carriers may be willing to go to great lengths to discredit your claim.
Insurance claims adjusters may reference your statement given in the immediate aftermath of a truck accident to imply that you are at fault, cite any delay in medical care as a perceived failure to mitigate damages, or attempt to entangle other parties in the lawsuit to diffuse blame.
They recognize that the long-term costs of serious injuries can be astronomical, making them highly motivated to skirt liability wherever possible. Truck insurance carriers have plenty of practice debating liability in truck accident lawsuits, which is why you need an expert lawyer of your own to give you a better chance at recovering compensation.
KMW Legal Can Help Protect Your Right to Compensation
At Keller, Melchiorre & Walsh, our decade in business has taught us that no two truck accidents are the same. Depending on factors like age, existing chronic conditions, and access to healthcare, some victims may require more long-term medical support than others or need to switch careers.
Additionally, the negligence responsible for the injuries can originate from different sources that require different qualifications to prove liability, depending on the type of lawsuit that is most appropriate. Many people who have been injured in a truck accident assume the most difficult part of recovering their damages will be proving negligence or parsing the legal language of complex insurance policies, but deadlines can also be a commonly underestimated obstacle.
KMW Legal’s skilled truck accident lawyers have successfully handled a wide variety of truck accident lawsuits in the West Palm Beach area, allowing us to anticipate the intricacies of complex claims, adjust our strategy accordingly, and stay on top of deadlines. We will employ our resources to conduct a meticulous investigation, negotiate settlement deals on your behalf, and keep in close contact with you to ensure you are consulted throughout the process of filing a truck accident lawsuit.
KMW Legal is Proud to Serve Truck Accident Victims in West Palm Beach, Florida
West Palm Beach has a population of 117,415 residents, with a rich history and thriving arts scene. KMW Legal is gratified to be entrusted by this growing community to protect their rights and help them rebuild their lives after being injured due to someone else’s negligence.
The attorneys of Keller, Melchiorre & Walsh have dutifully served West Palm Beach for a decade, working tirelessly to obtain fair settlements for victims of devastating truck accidents. You can rest assured that you are our priority, not an opportunity to settle for a smaller sum just to close the case. We are prepared to utilize our expertise and leverage our extensive resources to secure injured West Palm Beach clients fair settlements.
Contact a West Palm Beach Truck Accident Attorney
We know that truck accidents have the capacity to cause catastrophic damage to the health, finances, and emotional well-being of injured victims. You may be struggling to pay back medical debt on a reduced income, supervising accommodations to your home, planning a funeral service, or dealing with bouts of anxiety following a serious truck accident.
In your time of need, you deserve a team you can depend on to respect your goals and secure a winning settlement. The founding partners of KMW Legal have trial experience which makes our firm uniquely adept at navigating negotiations with powerful insurance companies, allowing us to build a reputation for success.
At Keller, Melchiorre & Walsh, we’ll take the time to listen to your story and walk you through all the implications of the personalized approach we develop for your case. Our former clients will testify to our expertise and work ethic that makes us winning West Palm Beach truck accident attorneys. Reach out to our team today to schedule a no-cost, no-commitment strategy session to discuss your options for moving forward with a truck accident lawsuit.