Commercial Truck Accidents
Devastating truck accidents are unfortunately common in the Bluegrass State. To be sure, statistics provided in the 2015 Kentucky Traffic Collision Facts report show that a total of 9,932 trucks were involved in accidents on Kentucky roadways during that year, with 108 of these leading to fatalities, and many more causing serious injuries. Of course, because of the massive size of these tractor-trailers, many victims of a truck accident sustain injuries that lead to lifelong disabilities.
In the rarest of cases, it may truly be an accident, an event that could not have been avoided or prevented. In many instances, however, it is the result of negligence on behalf of the truck driver, the trucking company, or another related party.
Ultimately, determining whose negligent actions led to a serious accident in Kentucky is necessary in order to discover the liable party. And, in turn, by establishing the party liable for the crash, a victim can file a personal injury claim in order to recover the compensation they deserve.
Understanding the Concept of Negligence
Before moving forward, however, it is necessary to understand the concept of negligence, as well as how it may lead to a truck accident. In general, negligence is considered a “failure to behave with the level of care that someone of ordinary prudence would have exercised under the same circumstances,” according to the Cornell University Legal Information Institute. This means that negligence can constitute both an action or a failure to act, depending on the circumstances of a case.
Consider, for example, a situation wherein the trucker is traveling 10 miles per hour over the speed limit and crashes into another motorist. Here, the trucker’s actions could be considered negligent, as a reasonable person under the same circumstances likely would not have been traveling so fast.
It’s important to note, however, that not all actions or inactions that potentially contribute to an incident will be considered negligent. For example, in a case where the mishap occurs during inclement weather, an injured victim may claim that the trucker was traveling too fast for conditions. This is not a guaranteed strategy though, as it is up to a judge or jury to determine whether or not a reasonable person would have acted in the same manner. Because of this, all truck accident victims are encouraged to work with a legal professional who has experience handling complex accident cases.
Negligent Parties in Truck Accident Cases
The victims may initially believe that the only person to be held liable is the driver of the truck. This isn’t the case, however; instead, a variety of different parties may have been responsible for causing the wreck.
Certainly, if the truck driver was speeding when the accident occurred, then they could be partially held liable for damages. However, in some cases, trucking companies will encourage drivers to complete their journey in the shortest timeframe possible, thereby incentivizing drivers to speed. In this case, the trucking company could potentially be held liable, as well.
Or, imagine a scenario in which the truck experienced a tire blowout and crashed into multiple cars on the highway. Here, it may have been negligence on behalf of the tire manufacturer that resulted in the tire blowout, or the mechanic who last repaired or changed the tires may have negligently serviced the truck.
In reality, because the actions or inactions of so many parties may have contributed to a wreck, claims can be highly complex. This is one of the many reasons it is important to reach out to an experienced attorney for help with your case.
Contact a Dedicated Attorney in Louisville
If you or a loved one has sustained serious injuries in a truck crash in Kentucky, don’t hesitate to reach out to us for help. At the Slechter Law Firm, our skilled attorneys can examine the specifics of your case to help discover who can be held liable for your damages. Contact us today for a consultation on your case.