Residents of Beverly Hills are very much accustomed to traffic and seeing accidents on the road. Crashes that involve a semi-truck are not as frequent as car crashes, but when they do happen, they’re extremely dangerous and sometimes fatal. Due to the massive size and weight of these tractor-trailers and semis, there are special rules that apply to these commercial trucks.
If you’ve been injured from an accident involving a semi-truck, you’ll have to prove that the truck driver or another party was liable. Crashes involving semi-trucks are severe and costly, so it’s essential to seek out and consult a skilled truck accident attorney as soon as possible to receive the highest compensation for your injuries.
Which Party is Held Liable for a Semi-Truck Accident?
There are multiple parties involved in a commercial truck accident. It’s not always a cut-and-dry process to determine who bears the legal burden for the crash. The following details possible parties that can be held liable for these semi-truck accidents:
When the Fault could be with the Truck Driver
When investigating a truck accident, an experienced attorney will look at the truck driver’s actions first. The following are factors that are considered when determining fault:
- How fast the driver was going
- How the driver behaved during the accident
- Whether the driver violated any state or federal laws
Possible laws that a truck driver could violate include the hours of service rule set by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and whether the truck driver violated drug and alcohol regulations, also set by the FMCSA. Researching whether the truck driver disregarded traffic laws, like failing to yield or check for blind spots, are also behaviors to consider.
When the Fault could be with the Trucking Company
Depending on whether the truck driver is an employee or an independent contractor, the trucking company will also be investigated. If the truck driver is a part of a trucking company, the company could be liable, since trucking companies are supposed to ensure that their drivers are fully trained with the proper credentials to drive and operate a semi-truck safely.
If the truck driver is an independent contractor, then the driver could very well be solely liable for the accident.
When the Fault could be with the Manufacturer
If any parts of the semi-truck had defects, the truck manufacturer could be held liable for the crash. The following are possible instances when the manufacturer might be held responsible:
- Brake failure
- Steering system failure
- Tire blowouts
Any part of the truck’s system that’s faulty can be the reason for the manufacturer’s liability. An experienced truck accident attorney will investigate all these matters thoroughly when deciding which party is liable.
Required Evidence for Proving Liability
Multiple parties can be at fault for the crash, and an experienced personal injury attorney on your side will thoroughly investigate the matter. Examples for evidence that can be used to establish a legal burden for the truck accident include the following:
- Damage to the vehicles
- Physical evidence from all vehicles and the accident scene
- The camera on the truck
- The truck driver logs
- Results of drug and alcohol screenings
- Eyewitness reports
- Records of cargo
- The accident report
- National Transportation Safety Board Investigation Report
Examining all evidence is key for proving whether the truck driver, the truck company, or the truck manufacturer was at fault for causing the accident. The sooner you contact a personal injury lawyer to represent you and investigate the scene, the stronger your chances of ensuring that all possible evidence can be documented and preserved.
Professional Truck Accident Attorneys in Beverly Hills
At Setareh Law, we can explain to you how fault is determined and offer legal advice through a free consultation. As an experienced and aggressive truck accident personal injury law firm, we’ll work to determine if you’re entitled to compensation to cover expenses for medical care, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering.
Our team is dedicated to representing clients throughout California. Call us at 310-659-1826 or fill out our form online today.