Truck accidents are more fatal than other motor vehicle accidents. Common injuries in this type of accident are broken bones, dislocated discs in the spine, back and neck injuries, spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injury. Texas has a statute of limitations of two years for personal injury claims, but you should pursue compensation as quickly as possible.
Drastic difference in vehicle size and weight
The reason why truck accidents are fatal for the car driver is the drastic difference in size and weight of the vehicles. Even a small weight difference in vehicles matters, so when you have a big discrepancy, it’s more damaging. The average semi-truck weighs 80,000 pounds, and the average car is 5,000 pounds. Other reasons semi-trucks are more dangerous than standard cars are they are slower to stop and take up more space during turns.
If the truck was carrying hazardous materials, then this further increases the risk of serious injury or death. Spilled materials could cause an explosion or a fire. You must immediately remove yourself from the scene, if possible, for your safety. The HAZMAT truck driver should give you protective gear when you are incapable of exiting your car. They are also responsible for containing the spill to the best of their ability.
Liability isn’t as easy to determine
When you are in a truck accident, it’s not always the driver who is liable. Other possible entities you could seek compensation from are the company that employs the driver, the manufacturer of the truck and the customer who is responsible for the cargo on the truck. It depends on what led to the accident. A lawyer who’s familiar with motor vehicle accidents could look into what happened to try determining who is at fault.
Most semi-trucks have black boxes — event data recorders — that your lawyer might be able to access to determine how much liability the truck driver may have. The black box may reveal that the truck driver did or didn’t take some sort of action that contributed to the wreck.
Motor vehicle accidents involving semi-trucks are not only more devastating but more complex. You should take photos of the scene to help investigators determine liability. If you weren’t in good condition for taking pictures, have someone you trust or a lawyer go to the scene. Even skid marks could help law enforcement piece together who is responsible.