Injured In A Colorado Truck Accident?Get the help you need today.
Experienced Truck Accident Lawyer
Serving Denver & the Greater Colorado Area for Three Decades
Trucking accidents are on the rise nationally, and their effects can be devastating to both truck drivers and other motorists. Besides causing serious personal injuries and fatalities, accidents often lead to lost time at work, emotional anxiety, lower quality of life, and more.
If you’ve been injured in a truck accident or any other type of auto accident in Colorado, you can contact me for a free consultation at (303) 454-8000 or toll-free at (800) ROSEN-911, or by filling out the form on the right.
I’ve handled thousands of truck accident and personal injury cases. I’ve seen a case just like yours, and I can help you through it!
Whether you’re a commercial truck driver or a fellow motorist on the road, it’s important to be aware of the leading causes of truck accidents and what all drivers can do to prevent them.
Injured in a truck accident in Colorado?
Get the facts you need to know…
If you have survived an accident with a large commercial truck, now you need to survive the legal aftermath to recover damages. Here are answers to some of the important questions you probably have.
What Is the First Thing I Should Do If I Am Involved in an Accident With a Truck?
Call the police. Seek medical attention. Take photos, if you can, of the damage. And obtain insurance information for the truck involved.
If I’m Injured in a Truck Accident Caused by the Truck, Who Is Liable?
The driver of the truck, the trucking company, and the truck’s manufacturer—if you can prove that the accident was caused by some mechanical defect in the truck—may all be found liable for the accident.
What If the Accident Happened at Least Partly Because of Bad Weather Conditions?
It can be hard to figure out who is at fault when an accident happens during bad weather. The assignment of liability will largely depend on how severe weather conditions were and the speed at which the drivers were traveling. If conditions were blinding, as during a blizzard, insurance companies may classify the accident as an “act of God”—an event occurring entirely from natural causes that could not have been reasonably foreseen and prevented—making it harder for you to recover damages. An experienced truck accident attorney can aggressively defend your position and increase your chances of recovery.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Truck Accidents?
Truck accidents that are the fault of the truck driver are most commonly caused by:
- Fatigue, excessive speed to meet tight deadlines, equipment failure, mountain road conditions, overloading or improper loading, inclement weather, driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or prescribed medications, and distracted driving (texting).
- The cargo being hauled can also cause accidents, including hazardous or flammable materials, oil spills, and chemical releases.
But not all truck accidents are caused by the truck driver. Lawcore.com reports that the majority of truck accidents are actually caused by errors on the part of those who drive smaller vehicles.
Smaller vehicle errors include:
- Driving in the blind spots of the trucks, cutting into a lane directly in front of a truck, following a truck too closely, trying to pass a truck on the wrong side of the road, abandoning a stalled car in the middle of a traffic lane instead of the shoulder of the road, distracted driving, and driving under the influence.
How Is an Accident Involving a Truck Different From a Typical Automobile Accident?
Because of the size and weight of these rigs, the injuries sustained in tractor-trailer accidents are often more severe. Such accidents also tend to involve several insurance companies; the trucking company may be insured by one carrier and the goods being transported by another. And many federal laws apply specifically to truck drivers but not to other drivers.
What Are the Unique Responsibilities of Truck Drivers on the Road?
Because they operate large vehicles, truck drivers have a special responsibility to other drivers on the road to operate their truck safely. They must maintain a safe speed, check their blind spots before making turns or changing lanes, and watch for other vehicles when making wide turns. They are prohibited from drinking and driving, operating a cell phone while driving, driving while fatigued, and exceeding federal hours-of-service safety regulations.
Truck Accidents on the Rise: Disturbing Statistics
As the number of cars and trucks on the road steadily increase, it’s unfortunately not surprising that truck accidents are growing. Commercial trucks can be 80 feet long and weigh as much as 40 tons, and motorists who collide with them are likely to suffer serious and even fatal injuries. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, about 500,000 truck accidents occur every year in the U.S.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 4,067 Americans died in traffic accidents involving large trucks in 2015, up 4.1 percent from 2014. In Colorado, 64 drivers were killed in collisions involving trucks in the same year.
Other national statistics that drivers may find surprising include:
- 68 percent of all fatal truck accidents occur in rural areas, not cities.
- Two-thirds of all fatal truck accidents happen during the day as opposed to at night.
- Fatal truck accidents occurred more often on weekends.
Laws That Impact the Trucking Industry
The Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Enhancement Act of 2012 requires truck operators to use electric onboard recorders (EOBRs) to help deal with driver fatigue, implements higher fines for carriers that continue to operate illegally after being shut down for safety violations, and sets up a clearinghouse of alcohol and controlled substance test records of drivers.
Beginning in January 2012, a federal law was put in place by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration with prohibitive restrictions for truckers, including:
- Texting, dialing, and even holding a phone while operating a truck, but allowing drivers to use hands-free mobile devices requiring only a single touch.
Operators who violate this law may face over $2000 in fines and the loss of their license. According to an ABC7.com report, the law came as a response to an accident involving a truck driver who was using his cell phone when he caused an accident that killed 11 people in Kentucky in 2011.
Do I Need to Hire a Truck Accident Attorney?
Truck accidents tend to be a lot more complicated than accidents involving only automobiles. The driver usually works for a large trucking company that is represented by a truck insurance company. Depending on the truck’s cargo, the goods being transported may also be insured—so now another insurance company is also involved. Moreover, truck insurance companies routinely order extensive investigations of accidents involving trucks. Trying to handle all this without the help of an experienced truck accident attorney is usually a bad idea.
If you’ve been injured in a crash involving a large truck, contact the Law Offices of Daniel R. Rosen online or call (303) 454-8000 today.
Colorado Truck Accident Resources
Overcoming from a truck accident injury is overwhelming enough. Navigating the legal process doesn’t have to be. We’re here to guide you every step of the way.
What’s My Truck Accident Case Worth?
Learn the key factors that go into calculating damages in an auto accident case — a critical process that can greatly impact your settlement.
Common Causes of Large Truck Accidents
Injured in an accident involving a large truck? Learn about the different factors that may be to blame for large truck and tractor-trailer collisions.
Guide to Defensive Driving
Reduce your risk of collision by anticipating dangerous situations, including the mistakes of other drivers. This guide highlights important defensive driving skills every responsible driver should master.
Safety Regulations For Truckers & Their Employers
How is the trucking industry protecting you from dangerous collisions with their trucks? Explore the safety regulations imposed on the industry in an effort to curb accidents involving large trucks.
What's the Hurry? Tailgaters Need to Back Off
Following too close to another vehicle is a sure way to cause a collision. Follow these simple guidelines when following cars and large commercial trucks.
Sharing the Road Safely with Large Commercial Trucks
Learn why large commercial trucks present unique driving challenges for smaller vehicles and the techniques to avoid these collisions.