Newport News Truck Accident Lawyers
Big Rig Accidents Call for Big Representation
Kalfus & Nachman PC and the team of truck accident lawyers in Newport News have a reputation for going big when working on accident claims while still giving our clients the attention that only a small firm can deliver.
While we work diligently on your case and allow you to focus on your health, we will also be going head-to-head with large trucking companies and even larger insurance corporations. After you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a truck accident, there is really no other name in Virginia that you should choose to represent you!
Why Do Truck Accidents Happen
Truck accidents are a constant issue on America’s highways. Based on National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data, a severe truck accident that causes death or a permanent injury occurs about four times every hour or approximately 100 times a day. This statistic does not even include minor truck accidents that cause more vehicular damage than physical injury.
Why are there so many truck accidents, though? What are the causes of so many tractor-trailer crashes? It might not come as a surprise, but many truck accidents can be traced back not to the negligence of the motorist in the smaller vehicle but instead to the mistakes of the truck driver and their employer, the parent trucking company.
Four of the worst yet most common causes of truck accidents are:
- Truck driver fatigue: Many truck drivers can be scheduled to work up to 14 hours a day and 70 days a week. Naturally, such long shifts lead to truck driver exhaustion, which puts everyone in danger. Fatigue will cause a trucker to have reduced reaction times, poor vehicle control, and blurred vision, assuming they do not simply fall asleep behind the wheel.
- Drug impairment: When a truck driver is fatigued, they can be tempted to use prescription medicines and over-the-counter substances to keep themselves awake. Unfortunately, the side effects of these drugs include general malaise and exaggerated exhaustion once the medicine wears off.
- Incorrectly loaded cargo: The cargo in or on the trailer of a commercial truck can drastically affect how the whole vehicle handles in transit. If the freight is not loaded correctly, it can cause braking and tipping hazards, as well as a risk of loose objects falling into the road behind the truck.
- Truck part defects: Every part of a big rig needs to be in top condition before it rolls onto the highway. Regular maintenance is usually required to check for any part issues that might cause a crash if they go unnoticed.
Trucking Company Liability After a Crash
Typically, the trucking company is the party that answers a truck accident claim, not the individual truck driver. This liability assignment is somewhat new, though. In the past, trucking companies could hire truckers are independent contractors and sidestep any liability after a truck accident because they were not “technically” the employers of the trucker who caused the crash.
Now, rules set by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) allow trucking companies to be held liable for the negligence of their truckers – whether they are employees or independent contractors – through the legal concept of respondeat superior.
Proof of liability is still crucial for a truck accident claim, though. You can be certain that the responding trucking company will try to defeat your argument using any method they can manage. If you want your claim to have a stronger chance of being successful, then you should allow our Newport News truck accident attorneys to manage it, gather evidence, and construct your argument to take into settlement negotiations or litigation.
Useful evidence to use a truck accident claim includes:
- Dashcam footage
- Truck driver’s shift logs
- Trucking company’s hiring practices
- Eyewitness statements
- First responder reports
- Medical records
Always Ready to Fight for Our Clients
Our Newport News truck accident lawyers of Kalfus & Nachman PC know that trucking and insurance companies are always eager to fight back against any injury claim brought against them. Lucky for our clients, we love to fight back. When faced with a challenge, our team rises to the occasion because it is both our passion and the right thing to do for the people in our communities.