Over the years, we have helped countless accident victims through the difficult aftermath of a truck accident. Our NYC personal injury attorneys have the legal knowledge, resources, and experience to help you seek full compensation from the truck driver or trucking company responsible for your accident.
Many of our clients come to us with questions about their rights, about New York personal injury law and about trucking regulations, and we are able to provide them with the reliable legal counsel they need. Our legal team has provided you with answers to some of the most commonly asked accident questions below, and we invite you to call our office for a free, no-obligation consultation.
What are some of the common problems with large trucks?
Large 18-wheelers and other commercial trucks are simply not built in the same manner as their smaller counterparts. Commercial trucks are much more complex and difficult to operate, which is why truck drivers must have a special Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) in order to drive these trucks. Some of the most common failures with these trucks deal with the braking systems and lighting systems.
According to the Department of Transportation, almost 30% of all truck accidents involved some sort of brake failure. Federal regulations have been created to ensure that braking systems and other aspects of commercial trucks are held to certain safety standards. When accidents happen as a result of defective products, you may be able to seek compensation from the trucking company, the manufacturer, or the designer of the defective product.
Are truck drivers subject to drug and alcohol testing?
Truck drivers are required to be on the road constantly, driving for extended periods of time while being away from their home and their families. Many truck drivers turn to alcohol or drugs as a coping mechanism or to stay awake during their long shifts, and this puts other drivers on the road at risk. For this reason, federal law requires truck drivers to submit to random tests for the presence of drugs or alcohol in their systems.
Trucking companies must administer a drug and alcohol test before a driver can be hired, and they are also required to test 10% of their drivers at random for drugs and alcohol use while on duty. When a truck driver is involved in a fatal accident or an accident causing serious injury, he or she will be required to undergo this testing as well. You have a legal right to seek compensation if you are injured in an accident in which the truck driver was cited for drug or alcohol abuse, and our attorneys can help you gather the evidence you need.
Are there certain hours when a truck driver cannot drive?
Truck drivers are restricted in the number of hours that they can drive by federal hours-of-service regulations. These rules were created to keep tired driversoff the road and reduce the number of large truck accidents, and are based off of extensive research by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Truck drivers who are behind the wheel for more than eight hours in a row are automatically twice as likely to be involved in a crash, and fatigue is one of the most commonly cited elements in serious crashes.
When should I file a truck accident claim?
After a serious accident, you may be uncertain as to whether or not you should pursue an accident claim. Keep in mind that you will probably not receive financial compensation for the property damage and medical expenses you have incurred unless you take legal action, and our firm is here to help. It is wise to call a truck accident attorney immediately after your accident to preserve the evidence you need, and you must file a claim within the time frame that is allotted in the state of New York. The New York Statute of Limitations allows injury victims a three-year window in which to file a personal injury lawsuit from the date of an accident.
What should I do after a truck accident?
The period of time directly following a truck accident can have a substantial impact on your ability to recover maximum compensation for your injuries and damages. First, you should seek medical attention from a doctor or medical professional who can help you identify any injuries you may have. Some injuries are internal and may not reveal themselves until a later time, so you should see a doctor even if you do not think you are injured. Secondly, you should take photos and document the accident scene as well as you can. Include shots of your vehicle and the truck from multiple angles, and try to gather the phone numbers and names of witnesses. You should also leave your vehicle as it is until it can be appraised for damages, as this repair estimate will become an important part of your injury claim.
For further information or answers to any other questions that you may have, please do not hesitate to call us at Greenberg & Stein, P.C.