Truck Accident Law – Identifying the Defendant

//Truck Accident Law – Identifying the Defendant

Truck Accident Law – Identifying the Defendant

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Identifying the Defendant

One of the first steps in any type of litigation is identifying the defendant in your case. This, however, can be particularly difficult in an 18-wheeler truck accident since there are so many different people sharing the responsibility of getting a big rig ready for the road. It is certainly possible that any of these individuals could make an error behind the scenes that could have a significant impact. There may also be multiple errors made by different people or entities. If many people jointly caused your accident then they all may share liability and all be named defendants in your lawsuit. More Information here

In the world of modern trucking, several people may be responsible for making errors that may affect the truck’s safety and performance. They may be the truckers, the trucking companies, manufacturers, firms that load the trucks, and companies that plan out the big rig’s routes. Let’s discuss each in more detail.

Truckers: Not surprisingly, the truckers themselves are the most frequent cause of trucking accidents. Truckers often will make actual driving errors on the highways. These of course could include many types of errors: speeding, running lights, making bad turns, weaving on the turnpikes, etc. In other types of cases, the truckers may ignore such mandatory safety measures as taking rest breaks. They usually do this in order to keep up with what is often an unrealistic delivery schedule, with a possible consequence of falling asleep at the wheel or driving off the road.

Trucking Companies: Generally speaking, if you can sue the trucker you can probably also sue the trucker’s employer. This is possible because of two main reasons. First, under the theory of direct liability, you can hold the trucking company liable if that trucking company did something negligent that in turn lead to your injuries. Example: The trucking company fails to keep the truck’s brakes in good repair and that truck crashes into you. In this case, you would hold both the trucker and his employer liable.

In other cases, it may appear that the trucker was completely to blame and that the trucking company did nothing wrong. A victim may still be able to hold the trucking company liable, under the doctrine of “respondeat-superior.” This rather formal Latin term effectively means that an employer is responsible for all employee behavior on-the-job, even if that employer did nothing wrong.

Manufacturers: If a manufacturer produces a trucking part with a defect or with manufacturing flaws then that manufacturer may be held liable. Since trucks are composed of so many parts, they also must operate perfectly to ensure that the truck is in safe condition. For example, if a truck’s tires or tie-down straps are flawed then that truck may pose dangers to the public. If this happens and an accident ensues, the manufacturer may be held liable.

Companies that Load Trucks: The way in which a truck is loaded can be a major factor in that truck’s on-road safety. Weights in excess of 80,000 pounds are illegal by law, although many times truckers or their bosses may load more in order to be more cost-effective. When overloaded trucks are on the road they are much more likely to tip over. In other cases, if cargo is not appropriately tied down it may shift in transit which in turn can create a weight unbalance and a consequent accident.

Companies that Plan Truck Routes: Because of height, weight, width, length, or cargo restrictions trucks often are not allowed to simply drive on all roads, as we do in our cars. This is particularly true when dealing with various bridges, tunnels, and suburban roads. Consequently, truck route planning companies are normally used to facilitate a long-haul trucker’s job. If this company makes uncorrected errors then an accident may happen. In this type of accident, a victim may look to the route planners for liability.

With so many different people sharing responsibility for a truck’s safety it is important for a victim to be able to properly assess liability.

By | 2024-06-03T19:00:51+00:00 June 3rd, 2024|18 wheeler accident|0 Comments

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