Helping Truck Accident Victims Across Arizona
The aftermath of a truck wreck can be an extremely difficult time due to the often life-altering injuries you’ve had to deal with. Semi truck accident cases are extremely complex because there are vast amounts of federal and state safety and insurance regulations, as well as industry standards that govern the trucking industry. It is crucial to obtain a personal injury lawyer who is knowledgeable in the often overlapping system of trucking laws and standards.
The diligent Arizona truck accident lawyers at Ramos Law have the skills and experience to undertake this highly technical work. If you have been involved in an accident with a large truck, contact us as soon as possible, or complete this form for a no-cost evaluation of your situation.
Dr. Joseph Ramos gives context and clears up any misconceptions as to the media description of “Brake Failure” in tractor trailer accidents.
Why Having a Truck Accident Lawyer is Vital
Navigating the aftermath of a large truck accident is very different than typical automobile collisions. Semi truck claims are more complicated to resolve due to the possible layers of insurance companies involved. The trucking company, the truck driver, the cargo shipper, and the trailer owner could all have separate insurance providers. If more than one party is liable, it may broaden the amount of insurance coverage available to pay for your injuries.
Due to the damage a large truck may cause, commercial truck drivers and trucking companies are required by law to carry much higher amounts of liability insurance than automobile drivers. That raises the financial stakes after an accident, which means you especially need an experienced truck accident attorney who will know what to do when going up against the trucking company’s legal defense team.
Unfortunately, you may also end up fighting with your own insurance company — the same insurance company you pay to protect you and your family may not be there for you like you thought they would be. It is not uncommon to have to fight with two insurance companies, yours and the large truck’s. Having the seasoned attorneys at Ramos Law representing you could make the difference in you being properly compensated for your damages, injuries, or loss after your accident with a semi truck.
The statute of limitations for an Arizona truck accident is two years. For wrongful death claims, the two-year time frame begins at the date of the victim’s death, which may come later than the date of the accident. In all situations, the sooner you begin your case, the better!
How Our Truck Accident Lawyers Can Help
Oftentimes, large truck crashes are caused by circumstances that could have been prevented; however, the cause may be quite difficult to find because of the many possible factors involved. Our Arizona truck accident attorneys can expertly navigate the investigation and help you receive the justice you deserve. We consider applicable federal laws, state laws, municipal laws, the records and certifications of the driver and the large truck, and the policies of the shipping and trucking companies.
We will investigate the collision and gather evidence to support your claim, including:
- Review police and accident reports
- Analyze vehicle damage
- Interview witnesses and those involved in the accident
- Determine all the responsible parties
- Examine the truck driver’s maintenance records and logs to ensure they were not falsified
- Discover all the insurance policies available to provide compensation
Common Causes for Arizona Large Truck Crashes
While there are usually a complex set of issues behind nearly all large truck accidents, some of the factors involved may include:
- Truck driver error or negligence
- Driving too fast for road or weather conditions
- Working under pressure
- Fatigue and falling asleep at the wheel
- Distracted driving
- Following too closely to respond to unexpected situations
- Speeding and other traffic violations
- Unfamiliarity with the surroundings
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Cargo overloaded/improperly loaded onto a truck
- Vehicle-related failure
- Brake issues
- Tire issues
Trucking Accident Statistics
According to the 2018 Large Truck Traffic Safety Fact Sheet produced by The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA):
- 4,951 people killed in crashes involving large trucks
- 71 percent of people killed in large truck crashes were occupants of other vehicles
- In 3 percent of fatal large truck accidents, the truck driver had a BAC of .08 or more
- Large-truck drivers involved in fatal crashes had a higher percentage (21.2%) of previously recorded crashes compared to drivers of other vehicle types
According to the 2019 Arizona Motor Vehicle Crash Facts produced by the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT):
- 1,912 truck tractors (with or without a semi trailer) were involved in crashes
- 414 resulted in injury
- 60 resulted in death
- 47 tanker trucks were involved in crashes
- 7 resulted in injury
- 1 resulted in death
- 9,471 other truck combinations were involved in crashes
- 2139 resulted in injury
- 16 resulted in death
Common Truck Accident Injuries
18-wheelers often weigh thousands of pounds more than the average motor vehicle and carry thousands of pounds more in cargo. Because of the huge weight and size difference, victims of semi-truck accidents often suffer devastating and life-altering injuries.
Some of the most common injuries after a large truck accident include:
- Head and brain injuries
- Back and neck injuries
- Rib and torso injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Internal injuries
- Loss of limbs
Truck Accident Compensation
The time after a large truck wreck can be uncertain and overwhelming both financially and emotionally. If you have been injured in a semi truck accident, you may be entitled to compensation including:
- Reimbursement for medical bills, prescription medications, and physical therapy
- The estimated cost of future medical treatment
- Pain and suffering
- Current and future lost wages
- The cost to replace or fix your automobile
- The cost of a rental car while your vehicle is undergoing repair
Arizona Trucking Accident Frequently Asked Questions
Arizona is a comparative negligence state, meaning that fault can be apportioned between different persons depending on their level of fault. For example, if both parties share fault, the insurance company can apportion liability accordingly, putting fifty percent fault on each driver if the fault is equally shared, or any combination thereof (80/20, 70/30, 60/40, etc…). If you are involved in an accident with a privately-owned truck that is considered to be at fault, you would have a claim against that driver’s insurance company. If the at-fault truck is a company vehicle, the claim would likely be against the employer’s insurance company, as the employer is vicariously liable for most actions of the employee if it occurs while they are working. Should a lawsuit have to be filed, the suit would be against both the employee individually and the employer. Make sure to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney if you are involved in an accident involving a truck.
In most cases, the statute of limitations in the state of AZ for a truck accident case is two years from the date of the accident. This means you must either settle the claim or file a lawsuit before the two years expires. If the truck is owned by a government entity, such as the state, municipality, county, or school district, the statute of limitations is one year from the date of the accident. However, there are important procedural deadlines that must be met in any case involving a government entity, and these deadlines can be as little as six months from the date of the accident. For this reason, it is very important that you consult with an experienced personal injury attorney immediately if you are involved in an accident involving a truck.
If you are injured in an accident with a semi-truck in Arizona and the semi driver is at fault, you can make a claim against that driver’s insurance company, or the employer’s insurance company if it is a company vehicle. The bodily injury claim would include special damages (compensation for any medical bills or lost wages incurred due to the accident) and general damages (compensation for pain and suffering). If you are unable to settle the claim with the insurance company within the applicable statute of limitations, either because the offer is unacceptable or the insurance company does not agree that their driver is at fault, you may file a lawsuit against the driver and the driver’s employer if the truck is a company vehicle. Be sure to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney if you are injured in an accident involving a semi-truck.
Truck Accident Lawyers Serving Phoenix and Surrounding Areas
- El Mirage
- Fountain Hills
- Paradise Valley
- Sun City
- Sun City West