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Truck Accidents

Florida Truck Accident Lawyer

The Florida Truck Accident Lawyer You Need for Top Compensation

The minute a crash occurs the trucking company and its insurance provider are putting their wheels in motion to defend against liability. Their goal? To avoid taking responsibility for the devastation they have caused so they don’t have to pay you the money you and your family are owed. You need to manage your new normal of life with a serious and permanent disability or without a deceased loved one. You need an experienced Florida truck accident lawyer on your side. The Searcy Denney truck accident legal team takes immediate action to protect your right to just compensation. truck accident with SUV

Our Florida Truck Accident Attorneys Help Accident Victims Recover Top Compensation

While all car accident cases present challenging issues, truck accident cases are unique. From the complexities of large commercial trucks to the trucking and insurance companies involved, in order to secure just compensation after an accident, you need to be able efficiently and effectively pursue your claim without letting mistakes jeopardize your legal rights. This requires extensive experience in truck wreck settlements and litigation, and the ability to convince defense attorneys and judges that you are entitled to a sizable monetary award.

Damages awarded in truck accidents include:

  • Medical expenses
  • Estimated future medical costs
  • Lost wages
  • Future lost earnings ability
 

Reasons for Trucking Accidents in Florida

One of the jobs of a Florida truck accident lawyer is to determine why the accident happened, whether it was the result of driver negligence; the trucking company’s negligence; a failure on the part of the truck or parts manufacturers; or a combination of all of these. 

Truck Driver Negligence

Truck driver negligence typically plays at least some part in causing truck accidents. For instance, many big rig wrecks result from: 

  • Truck driver speeding. Because 18-wheeler drivers’ jobs often depend on reaching their destinations at a certain time, it is not surprising that speeding is a common occurrence. Unfortunately, when truck drivers exceed the speed limit or drive too fast for conditions, serious truck wrecks can happen.  
  • Distracted driving. Mobile phones, tablets and GPS equipment help truck drivers alleviate their loneliness during long stretches on the road, stay in touch with dispatchers, and find best routes. But when a trucker uses technology while driving they are putting everyone in danger. 
  • Driving in a reckless manner. Erratic driving — tailgating and switching lanes too quickly, for example — puts everyone at risk. A Florida truck accident lawyer will help you hold a reckless truck driver responsible for your accident.  
  • Driver sleep deprivation. Federal laws restrict how many hours a truck driver can be on the road, but that doesn’t prevent many from driving too long, too far, and when they are drowsy. Many truck drivers suffer from sleep apnea or other sleep disorders making the problem of sleep deprivation even worse. 
  • Truck driver DUI. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is always a recipe for disaster, but even more so when the driver is operating a giant vehicle capable of causing unimaginable injury to other drivers and their passengers. While consuming alcohol and illegal narcotics is certainly a problem, many truckers who take prescription and OTC medicines can also become dangerously impaired. 

Trucking Company Negligence

Trucking companies have a responsibility to ensure that they create a safe environment for everyone on the road when their trucks are in operation. If a trucking company fails to meet this responsibility, your Florida truck accident lawyer can hold it legally liable for any accidents and injuries that occur. Common ways that trucking company negligence contributes to accidents include: 

  • Negligent hiring practices. It is the responsibility of the trucking company to put its trucks in the hands of competent and healthy drivers who have the appropriate licenses to operate big rigs on the road. If the trucking company bypasses proper hiring procedures or takes shortcuts — something that typically happens in times of driver shortages — then it is liable for the actions of its employees and/or contractors. 
  • Driver training failures. It is also up to the trucking companies to ensure that its drivers are properly trained in operating the vehicle in question. Failure to do so constitutes negligence. 
  • Hours of service violations. Federal law restricts how many hours a driver can operate a vehicle in any 24-hour period. Requiring drivers to meet schedules that necessitate a violation of these restrictions can result in accidents.
  • Vehicle maintenance issues. It is up to the trucking company to make sure that its fleet is properly maintained and that all of its rigs are in good working order. Meticulous maintenance records are required to be kept by all commercial vehicle owners. 

Manufacturer Liability in Florida Truck Accidents 

When a truck accident is found to be caused by a defective part — such as malfunctioning brakes or faulty tires — the truck’s manufacturer and/or the parts manufacturer may be held liable for the resulting damages. Proving manufacturer liability in a trucking accident is a complex process, requiring truck manufacturing industry knowledge, as well as experience analyzing manufacturing and maintenance records. It takes the skills of an accomplished Florida truck accident lawyer to establish a strong case for manufacturer liability.

The differences between car and truck accidents.

How is Fault Determined in Truck Accidents?

Before the judge or jury awards you damages. it is necessary to prove who or what caused the collision. While truck driver negligence is the primary factor in most cases, other causes of liability need to be examined. Uncovering fault is complicated because there could be several parties who share in the blame. A commercial truck driver who owns and operates the truck, could be liable for negligence if they operated the truck under unsafe conditions or if they failed to maintain the vehicle properly. Trucking companies, truck part manufacturers, and cargo loading companies are also potential defendants in your lawsuit. Your Florida truck accident lawyer will examine all possible parties for blame in order to maximize damages. 

Steps to Take After a Truck Accident in Florida

As soon as you retain Searcy Denney, our legal team jumps into action, meeting and often exceeding the efforts and skills of our trucking company adversaries. Before the accident scene is cleared and witnesses and important evidence disappear, your Florida truck accident law firm will dispatch experts to:

  • Talk to witnesses and gather preliminary statements and contact information
  • Examine and photograph physical evidence, including skid marks, guardrails, debris scatter and distances of signs and posts from the road
  • Observe the driver’s demeanor for signs of intoxication, exhaustion or agitation
  • Take note of the surroundings, weather, malfunctioning traffic lights or other factors that may be of importance

We also take immediate steps to ensure all evidence is preserved, including the entire rig, its cargo, the driver’s cell phone, and any other electronics or items that will help us piece together how the crash occurred. We have experts on hand to review and analyze the contents of the big truck’s event data recorder (EDR) — often referred to as the black box — that contains some of the most important details required to make our case. This indestructible instrument will tell us important facts such as the speed the semi truck was traveling, whether brakes were applied, details about the driver’s steering, and the exact events leading up to and time of the crash.

Why You Need a Florida Truck Accident Lawyer 

Because semi truck accidents happen so frequently, trucking companies and their insurers maintain an at-the-ready defense team whose sole purpose is to try to eliminate — or at least mitigate — the driver and/or company’s responsibility for the accident that has caused you so much suffering. To succeed against their well-oiled defense machine, you need a strong and aggressive legal team of your own. It is important that this team is headed up by a Florida truck accident lawyer whose law firm has a track record of fighting the trucking and insurance companies and succeeding. 

Not every personal injury lawyer or car accident law firm has the knowledge, resources, experience, and reputation needed to successfully represent a client in a catastrophic truck accident case. Because truck accident cases are taken on a contingency basis — which means you don’t pay anything for expenses or fees unless and until you recover damages — hiring a firm that lacks financial depth can lead to premature and low settlements. The bottom line is you need a firm like Searcy Denney that not only has experienced truck accident attorneys, but that can also absorb all the expenses until you win your court case or reach a settlement you are happy with.

Our Accident Case Results

As a top personal injury firm with a 40-year history of securing large verdicts and negotiating  multi-million dollar settlements for our clients, every time a Searcy Denney lawyer takes on a Florida truck wreck case, the opposing side knows that our client means business. This is evident with our track record of success in pursuing negligence claims in commercial vehicle accident cases. We are fierce negotiators and we are not afraid to battle it out in the courtroom, a fact that is not lost on our adversaries who want to avoid the expense of a lengthy trial. Included among our Florida truck accident lawyer case results are:

Call a Florida Truck Accident Lawyer for Help Today

As soon as you or a loved one are in an accident with a large commercial vehicle, it is critical to your case for financial compensation and recovery that you contact an experienced Florida truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. To schedule an appointment with a Searcy Denney truck wreck attorney please fill in our Contact Form or call us at 1-855-413-5906 to arrange for your free, confidential consultation at our West Palm Beach or Tallahassee office. No recovery, no fee.

Searcy Denney Scarola Barnhart & Shipley, PA

What Our Clients Have To Say

" Cannot say enough about Mr. Ward and his team. Joanna and Mr. Ward helped me through a very difficult time while being extremely professional and prompt. I would highly recommend. "