Tractor trailers deliver crucial goods and services on a daily basis. Unfortunately, these large vehicles, when operated by negligent drivers, put others at risk of severe and fatal injuries every day. If you or someone you love has been involved in an accident, a Cincinnati tractor trailer accident lawyer can explain your legal rights and options.
Filing a claim for a truck accident is different than if you were involved in a crash with another passenger vehicle. Proving fault isn’t always straightforward—especially if the trucker isn’t the negligent party. To get down to the bottom of what happened and properly value your claim so you have the means you need to recover as fully as possible, you’ll want an experienced legal representative by your side.
As personal injury lawyers, we recognize how devastating a tractor trailer accident can be, and we firmly believe the negligent party should be held responsible for their actions. Before we discuss the claims process and what you need to do after an accident, let’s take a look at how tractor trailer crashes affect those in Cincinnati.
Tractor Trailer Accidents in Cincinnati
If you drive through or around Cincinnati regularly, you know that you share the road with tractor trailers on just about every trip you take. With the number of large commercial vehicles on the roadways, it’s no surprise that accidents happen. Sometimes, however, those crashes resulted in serious or even fatal injuries.
For example, a driver was seriously hurt after a semi collided with their vehicle at the intersection of Bank Street and Winchell Avenue. At the time of the accident in April 2020, the cause of the crash was under investigation. The driver from the passenger vehicle had to be taken to the Intensive Care at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center. The tractor trailer driver, however, was not injured.
In the majority of tractor trailer accidents, the trucker walks away unscathed or with minor injuries. This is seldom the case for those in the smaller vehicle. This is because the trucker is afforded more protection by their larger, heavier vehicle. Passenger vehicles are often damaged beyond repair after an accident with a large truck.
Requirements for Driving Commercial Vehicles
In order to operate a tractor trailer, drivers have to meet both state and federal requirements. At the minimum, truckers need to meet the following qualifications:
- Have a valid, non-commercial driver’s license
- Be at least 21 years old
- Have at least one or two years of driving experience
- Provide proof of citizenship or lawful permanent residency
- Pass all applicable background screens
- Have no active driver’s license suspensions or revocations
- Be able to speak and read English to drive a commercial vehicle in the United States
- Get examined by a doctor on the National Medical Registry
- Pass a three-part test, including pre-trip vehicle inspection, basic vehicle control, and on-road driving exam
In the event a truck driver does not meet those qualifications and is hired anyway, they will be at an increased risk of causing an accident. If that happens, it’s possible the trucking company could be held accountable for any associated injuries and losses.
Protecting Yourself and Your Future After a Tractor Trailer Crash
Immediately following an accident with a tractor trailer, it’s imperative to seek medical attention. Depending on the severity of the crash, emergency responders may arrive on scene to assist anyone who has been injured. Even if your injuries are not severe, you’ll still want to visit a doctor and have a complete evaluation. Not only will this ensure you receive a proper diagnosis and treatment plan, but it will also ensure your injuries are documented. In the event they’re not, you’ll have a much harder time seek compensation.
Once you’ve tended to your medical concerns, get in touch with a Cincinnati tractor trailer accident attorney. You’ll want to get started on your claim, so your lawyer has ample time to investigate the accident, collect witness statements, and speak with an accident reconstructionist. With the proper evidence to support your claim, you’ll be on your way to receiving a fair settlement offer.
The claims process can seem overwhelming, but your lawyer will guide you through the process and ensure you understand what’s happening the entire time. In the event reaching a settlement isn’t possible, your attorney can advise you on how best to proceed. You may want to take your case before a judge to receive an official verdict.
Get Help From Thomas Law Offices
When an accident upends your life, you can get yourself back on track with the help of a Cincinnati tractor trailer accident lawyer from Thomas Law Offices. While you may think about handling the claim on your own, it’s important to remember that the insurance company is not there to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. They will likely do whatever they can to reduce your compensation to protect their bottom line. When you have an attorney by your side, you’ll reduce the risk of having your settlement offer jeopardized.
The sooner you get in touch with our office after your accident, the better your chances are of receiving full and fair compensation. To get started, schedule a free case evaluation with our attorneys today.