The enormous size of commercial trucks in comparison to other motor vehicles creates a heightened risk of serious injury when they are involved in an accident. It is important for truck drivers and other drivers to be careful and attentive in their actions to prevent accidents when possible. A failure to do so can result in significant damages to those involved.
A truck accident recently occurred in New York City involving a 24-foot truck and a sedan. Both vehicles were travelling in the same direction when the truck ran into the car, causing the car to go onto a nearby sidewalk. The car then struck a light pole on the sidewalk. The truck also went off the road and hit three cars in a dealership lot. Rescue officials had to remove the roof of the car to extract the driver. The driver was taken to a nearby hospital in critical condition. Three passengers in the car were also injured in the accident, though not as seriously as the driver.
Liability for any damages that arise from an accident involving a commercial truck is determined by applying the theory of negligence, just like with other motor vehicle accidents. Under this theory, an injured victim must prove certain elements to establish that a defendant was negligent and thus liable for their injuries. These elements are a defendant that owed the victim a duty to apply reasonable care in the operation of their truck, a breach of that duty, an accident caused by the breach and injuries to the plaintiff caused by the accident.
Additionally, in accidents in which a tractor-trailer is involved, there may be multiple defendants that can be held liable for a plaintiff's injuries. In addition to the truck driver, contractors, trucking companies and insurance companies may share liability based on the circumstances surrounding the accident. Anyone injured in an accident involving a commercial truck may seek the advice of an attorney experienced in such matters to determine their rights and responsibilities.