Commercial truck accident victims need to seek medical and legal help soon after the accident says Boca Raton car accident lawyer Joe Osborne.
Commercial trucks because of their size and the dangers posed by fatigued or impatient drivers can easily cause serious injuries or death if they’re involved in an accident. Fatal truck accidents happen nearly eleven times every day in the United States on average, killing nearly 4,000 people every year according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Boca Raton car accident lawyer Joe Osborne discusses how complex truck accident cases can be in a podcast available on YouTube.
He suggests an accident victim not waste any time in reaching out to a car accident attorney. “It’s imperative that a victim contact an attorney right away. When a tractor-trailer driver is involved in an accident the owner will move quickly to conduct its own investigation to see if the driver was or was not negligent.”
“They’re getting all their ducks in a row to make sure that if claims are brought they can quickly do everything they can to try and minimize their exposure. If a company is going to get out ahead of you in a case like this it’s very, very important that you hire a qualified car accident lawyer who can conduct a similar investigation and make sure that your claim is protected,” Osborne says.
He says there are many possible causes for a tractor trailer to be involved in an accident.
- Mechanical failures such as tires and brakes.
- Drivers can be fatigued and distracted because they’ve been behind the wheel for hours. Driving logs can be reviewed to see how long someone has been on the road.
- The driver may not know what he or she is doing. A review of the driver’s record of past speeding, accidents or rule violations could show past problems.
- Because of a shortage of drivers trucking companies are hiring inexperienced drivers who may not have enough training or the right kind of training.
In a tractor-trailer accident case the driver’s employer may be held responsible, according to Osborne, because Florida is a vicarious liability state. That means if a driver injures somebody while driving the employer’s truck while on the job the company can be vicariously liable and held responsible for the injuries caused by the driver.
Another reason to act quickly is that Florida law requires that for accident victims to obtain certain benefits through their insurance policies they need to seek medical care and treatment within 14 days of an accident. “Even though you may not know the full extent of your injuries or may not even know if you need to see a doctor it can be important to establish that doctor-patient relationship to access to those benefits,” Osborne says.
“It’s not uncommon, depending upon the type of collision, a day or two after an accident you may feel like you’re okay and you dodged the bullet until five, six, seven days later when the inflammation starts to die down, the swelling dies down and the injury really starts to show itself through pain or other problems. If it’s a week after the accident before you see a doctor that can really have an impact on your overall recovery.”
Osborne states it’s “really imperative” that depending on how severe the collision was that you see the right physician who can evaluate and treat your injuries. Your diagnosis and treatment also need to be fully, properly documented.
If you or a family member have any questions about truck accident law or have been injured by a commercial truck in the South Florida area, contact Boca Raton car accident lawyer Joe Osborne at (561) 293-2600 or fill out this online contact form. You can discuss your case, how the law may apply and your best legal options to protect your rights and obtain compensation for your injuries.