Types of Truck Accident Claims
Our West Palm Beach 18-Wheeler Accident Lawyer Explains the Crashes That Lead to Injuries
West Palm Beach truck accidents happen in many different ways, caused by a variety of factors and involving a wide range of different vehicles. What they have in common is that these kinds of accidents often come with serious consequences.
Trucks’ sheer size and the speed at which they regularly travel makes truck accidents often severe, causing serious injuries and even death, along with significant vehicle damage. That is not to mention that truck drivers are routinely pushed to the brink by their employers, leading to fatigue that increases the risk of a collision.
At Searcy Denney, we help people injured in trucking and other accidents get the full compensation available for their injuries. We understand the pain and stress that comes with being injured in a crash, especially when it was caused through no fault of your own. A West Palm Beach 18-wheeler accident lawyer at our firm will guide you through the legal process with experience and personal attention.
Tractor-Trailer Crashes in West Palm Beach
Tractor-trailers are some of the big rigs most commonly seen on highways in Florida and across the country. Also known as 18-wheelers, these trucks consist of a tractor – a six-wheel vehicle with a cabin for the driver – and a trailer used to haul cargo.
Tractor trailer crashes are far too common and can happen for a number of different reasons. Driver fatigue, intoxication and just plain error are often to blame when 18-wheelers collide with cars.
Improper truck maintenance and repair can also wreak havoc on the road. Trucks spend a significant amount of time on the road hauling heavy loads. They require regular maintenance and inspections to ensure that they are in working order.
A West Palm Beach 18-wheeler accident attorney will tell you that some of the most common maintenance-related issues that lead to accidents include:
- Brake failure
- Headlight defects
- Powertrain failure
- Suspension problems
- Tire blowouts
- Steering failure
For tractor-trailers, there is also the risk of a faulty trailer hitch. If the hitch malfunctions or the trailer otherwise becomes loose or unattached, it poses a significant obstacle for other drivers and can lead to a chain reaction crash.
Commercial truck companies are responsible for inspecting and maintaining their fleets. When a truck malfunctions and causes an accident, the company (and its insurer) is likely to be legally responsible for any injuries that happen as a result.
West Palm Beach Flatbed Truck Accidents
Flatbed trucks are commonly used to transport a wide range of items, including oversized and odd shaped objects, that are not prone to damage in weather.
These large vehicles feature a flat body and with no sides or roof around the bed of the truck. That makes them ideal for carrying loads that would be too wide for other types of trucks.
What makes flatbeds trucks useful is also what makes these vehicles dangerous, as any West Palm Beach 18-wheeler accident attorney will tell you. Flatbed trucks do not have walls, sides or a door to hold the cargo in place. If the cargo is not properly secured, it can slide around or even off of the truck. Loose cargo commonly causes two types of accidents:
- Jacknife: If the flatbed is a trailer, the shifting weight of moving or falling cargo on the trailer can push the vehicle so hard that it spins around.
- Rollover: The sudden movement or change in weight can also cause the truck to rollover completely.
Either of these types of accidents is likely to involve multiple cars behind the flatbed truck. That is not to mention the hazard that unsecured cargo poses to others on the road when it falls off and creates a sudden obstacle.
Dump Truck Collisions in South Florida
Dump trucks are commonly used to transport natural materials like rocks, stone, sand and waste. They often look like tractor-trailers, but the back end of the truck is open. The trucks are equipped with hydraulic ramps that lift the front end of the truck bed so as to “dump” material in the bed onto the ground below.
Dump truck accidents can be caused by a variety of factors, including driver error, vehicle maintenance issues and unsecured loads. When these accidents happen, they can raise complicated questions about who is legally liable for the crash. It is crucial to have an experienced West Palm Beach 18-wheeler accident lawyer in your corner.
Commercial dump truck operators are generally responsible for accidents caused by their drivers when the driver is acting within the scope of his or her job. The companies are also generally required to ensure that the driver is qualified to operate a dump truck, has been properly trained and is generally operating the vehicle in a reasonably safe manner.
Dump truck companies are also obligated to perform regular inspections and maintenance on the vehicles. When a dump truck malfunctions, however, the vehicle’s manufacturer may also share some of the blame. Truck defects often rear their ugly heads long after the vehicle has been produced and sold.
Tanker Truck Crashes in West Palm Beach
Tanker trucks are recognizable on the road for the long cylinders that they normally haul, carrying oil, fuel and other liquids and gasses.
These trucks are a potential safety hazard not only because of their size but also because of the types of material they haul. Chemicals, gases and other materials may be toxic if they spill out onto the road and into the air.
These crashes also often snarl traffic for hours on end because of the clean up required.
About Garbage Truck Accidents
Trash hauling trucks are a common sight on streets and roads throughout West Palm Beach and across South Florida. Although they provide a vital service to our communities, they also pose a potential safety hazard for drivers, cyclists and pedestrians.
The problem is that garbage and recycling trucks stop and start frequently and are often out on the street during early morning hours when it is still dark outside. Combine that with some drivers’ tendency to stop their trucks in the middle of the street, rather than to one side, and you have a recipe for possible disaster.
Speak with a West Palm Beach 18-Wheeler Accident Attorney
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, you have the right to seek compensation from those responsible. A West Palm Beach 18-wheeler accident lawyer at Searcy Denney can help.
Our offices are conveniently located in West Palm Beach and Tallahassee. Call us at 800-780-8607 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation with a West Palm Beach 18-wheeler accident attorney today.