Fort Smith Truck Accident Attorneys
The size and weight of 18-wheelers makes accidents involving these types of vehicles simply devastating. Physical and emotional consequences of an accident are overwhelming enough alone, but when coupled with the financial burden that will be associated with your recovery, things may become too much for you and your family to bear. Luckily, there is no reason that you should have to shoulder the financial burden of a truck accident yourself. Our Fort Smith legal team will fight on your behalf to aggressively pursue compensation from the responsible party.
If you or your loved one has been injured in a truck accident anywhere in Fort Smith, you should speak with one of the Fort Smith truck accident attorneys at McCutchen & Sexton – The Law Firm to begin assessing the legal action that may be available to you.
Truck Accident Claims in Fort Smith
Our Fort Smith legal team will fight on your behalf to help you pursue compensation for any of the following types of truck accident claims:
- Drunk Driving
- Mechanical Defect/Malfunction
- Employer Negligence/Liability
- Truck Driver Error/Negligence
- No-Zone Accidents
- Wrongful Death
Our Fort Smith legal team can help you pursue a claim that will remind the trucking industry that they can and will be held accountable for their actions.
Truck Types Commonly Involved in Accidents Around Fort Smith
Although the majority of truck drivers are safe and responsible, it only takes one wrong move for the sheer size and weight of the following vehicles to create an exceedingly dangerous situation:
- Box trucks
- Dump trucks
- Heavy construction vehicles
- Commercial vans and trucks
All of these trucks pose an inherent threat to the drivers around them by virtue of their size, a threat made all the more serious by negligent truckers and trucking companies.
Do I Need a Truck Accident Attorney?
Truck accident cases are different than many other personal injury cases because they can involve multiple liable parties. When you are injured in a truck accident, it may be your inclination to assume that the driver is to blame for your injuries. While this may be true, many other factors could be at play.
For example, if the driver’s employer pressured them to work longer hours or failed to provide suitable maintenance to their vehicle, the employer may ultimately be found responsible for your injuries. In addition to employer liability, the company responsible for cargo loading could have failed to properly secure the load. When a load is not secured properly shifting can occur, causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle.
Hiring a truck accident attorney is the best way to zero in on all possible responsible parties. Identifying and pursuing compensation from those responsible is your best chance of recovering compensation commensurate with your losses. Injuries are expensive, from extensive medical treatment to time spent away from work, truck accident injuries can quickly throw you into a stressful financial situation.
Additionally, in order to determine how much your injury claim is worth, a skilled attorney will evaluate the past, present, and future expenses that your injuries have presented. Having an accurate idea of what your claim is worth protects you from accepting a modest settlement from the at-fault parties. In attempts to reach a speedy resolution, the at-fault party’s insurer may quickly offer you a settlement. When you need compensation quickly, it can be tempting to accept a quick offer. However, if this settlement is nowhere near what you are owed, it will ultimately do very little to help you in the long run.
Going Up Against a Trucking Company
While you are being taken to a Fort Smith hospital, the trucking company’s “accident investigation team” may already be on the scene to look for any reason to blame you for the accident. From that moment on, the trucking company will be doing everything they can to reduce or eliminate your claim altogether. In some of the more extreme cases, trucking companies may even try to falsify driver logs in an attempt to diminish their liability.
With so much on the line, you will need our Fort Smith legal team on your side every step of the way. The skills, tenacity, and resources our Fort Smith legal team can bring to the table will be critical to go after a well-financed insurance company that is looking to protect their interests.
At McCutchen & Sexton – The Law Firm, our Fort Smith investigators can often secure the truck’s event data recorder, or black box, which will have recorded crucial information about the crash. Moreover, we may also retain experts, accident reconstructionists, and other professionals to help you prove exactly how the accident actually occurred.
Causes of Trucking Accidents in Fort Smith
Our economy depends upon the trucking industry to deliver goods across the country. While the vast majority of truck drivers are safe and cautious, any of the following circumstances may result in serious injury for accident victims:
- Poor/inadequate maintenance
- Failed brakes
- Truck driver fatigue
- Truck driver inexperience
- Overweight/improper loading
Trucking companies must uphold the various state and federal regulations that have been put in place to safeguard other drivers on the road. If they failed to take reasonable steps to protect you or your loved ones, you have every right to make them pay for the suffering you or your loved ones have been made to endure.
Why Hire McCutchen & Sexton – The Law Firm to Handle my Claim?
When accident victims need an advocate in Fort Smith, they call McCutchen & Sexton – The Law Firm. Our attorneys do everything possible to make sure that you feel heard, supported, and well-represented. One accident can completely turn your life upside down, and we do everything within our power to help you secure the resources that you need to reclaim your life. Some of the many strengths our team possess include:
- Experience – We have nearly thirty years ago, our firm has years of experience working within the Fort Smith community. Throughout our decades of fighting for clients, we have developed a deep commitment to helping people find a path forward when an injury has disrupted their life.
- Service – We are tenacious in and out of the courtroom when representing injury victims, however when it comes to communicating with clients we remain transparent, compassionate, and accessible. When you are hurting you need a lawyer that will offer you the support that you deserve.
- Results – Over 80% of our clients are referred to us because former clients and professionals that we have worked with know that we can get the job done. Our significant legal victories have been covered by a variety of media outlets, from the 10 o’clock news to the newspaper.
Truck Accident Statistics
Data included in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts Report recorded 4,889 fatal truck and bus accidents in 2017. Compared to 2016, this is a 9% increase in fatal accidents involving trucks. Historical data from 2005 – 2009 show a 34% decrease in fatal truck collisions. Unfortunately, in the years following, from 2009 to 2017, this decrease was negated by a 40% increase in fatal collisions across the United States. In only the last year of that sample, from 2016 to 2017, this figure increased by 8%.
According to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, truck accident injuries increased by 4% from 2016 to 2017. This percentage is only a modest increase compared to the climbing number of injuries measured from 2009 to 2015, which indicated a 62% increase compared to previous years.
Data collected regarding truck accidents in 2017 indicates:
- 57% of fatal crashes happened in rural areas
- 27% of fatal crashes happened on Interstates highways
- 13% of fatal crashes happened on rural Interstate highways
The majority of truck collisions, both fatal and non-fatal occurred Monday through Friday. 82% of all of the people who died in truck accidents were not occupants of the truck. If you have been injured in a truck accident, or you have lost a loved in a truck accident, reach out to a skilled injury lawyer today to discuss your legal options.
Consult with a Truck Accident Lawyer in Fort Smith
If you or your loved one has been injured in a truck accident anywhere around Fort Smith, you should speak with one of the Fort Smith truck accident lawyers at McCutchen & Sexton – The Law Firm to begin assessing the legal action that may be available to you. To begin developing your legal strategy with one of our Fort Smith personal injury attorneys, please call us today at (479) 783-0036 or fill out one of our contact forms today.
Trucking Accident FAQs
I was in an accident involving an 18-wheeler; who is liable for the accident?
When a passenger vehicle is involved in an accident caused by a commercial vehicle, victims often question who is responsible for their injuries and the damages to their car. The question of liability with commercial trucks is often complicated because of the large web of individuals responsible for the truck itself as well as the truck driver’s actions. Truck drivers are responsible for obeying all driving laws, following hours of service regulations, and making sure they are in the best state of mind to drive. When they neglect these responsibilities and cause an accident, they are liable for the consequences. Trucking companies that employ drivers are responsible for training and supervising drivers. Poor training, inadequate truck maintenance, and pushing drivers to meet deadlines and drive longer hours can lead to accidents. When trucking companies neglect their responsibilities, they are liable for any accidents that occur as a result. In many cases, it is common for a legal team to pursue charges against multiple parties whose negligence or recklessness played a part in causing your accident. At the McCutchen & Sexton – The Law Firm, we will use all of our resources to pursue charges against any negligent party and maximize your compensation.
How do you know if a commercial truck driver was over their hours of service?
Large commercial trucks have electronic control modules, also known as black boxes, incorporated into their engine system. The black boxes record data about the truck’s operations, including time driven. Additionally, many trucking companies operate on driver logs that keep track of the driving time. When an accident occurs, the driver log and black box data should be able to tell you how long the driver was operating before the accident, and if they have gone over the regulated hours of service allowed. It is not uncommon for trucking companies to try to cover or destroy this evidence as an effort to distance themselves from liability. The attorneys of the McCutchen & Sexton – The Law Firm are familiar with the usefulness of this data in pursuing legal action and will do everything they can to ensure they get it.
What damages can be recovered in a trucking accident?
The size and force of large commercial vehicles make them capable of extreme destruction when involved in an accident. If you are involved in an accident caused by an 18-wheeler or another type of commercial vehicle, you may be entitled to compensation for a variety of damages, including physical pain and injuries, mental anguish, property damage, medical bills, and even loss of income from time spent away from work. The attorneys of the McCutchen & Sexton – The Law Firm are familiar with the recoverable damages in trucking accidents and will advise you on the steps you should take in recovering the compensation you need.