Determining Liability in Truck Accidents

Determining liability after a truck accident can be very complex. Unlike other motor vehicle accidents, there are a great number of different parties that may be held liable, including the truck company, manufacturer, driver, and more. Unraveling who should be held responsible for the accident is important in seeking justice and compensation for those involved. To navigate the legal nuances of a truck accident, it is important to seek expertise from a New Haven truck accident lawyer. Now, let’s dive into who may be held liable in a truck accident.

Trucking Company

Oftentimes, commercial truck drivers are employees of large trucking companies, and these companies are responsible for those that they employ. Trucking companies must provide adequate training, ensure safety precautions are taken by their truck drivers, and conduct regular inspections. One common issue is trucking companies placing immense amounts of pressure on their employees to drive a certain amount of miles in an unreasonable time in order to get the job done. This can be very dangerous as it may cause drivers to work beyond the hours-of-service regulations that are enforced by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. This can lead to extreme fatigue and a serious truck accident.

Truck Driver

There is also a potential for truck drivers to be held liable if they are at fault for the truck accident. Truck drivers may risk the potential of a truck accident, for example, if they are driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Doing this is not only dangerous for the truck driver and others on the road, but it is also illegal and punishable by law. Other reasons why a truck driver may be held liable for an accident is if they were driving while using their phone, speeding, or failed to obey traffic laws.

Truck Owner

The truck owner may also be held liable for the truck accident if they failed to ensure the truck was properly maintained and cared for. While not as easy to determine direct liability in this case, it is a possibility. Truck owners have just as much of a responsibility as truck drivers do.

Cargo Loaders

In some scenarios, cargo loaders may be held liable for a trucking accident. While not all commercial trucks transport cargo, the majority of them do. If cargo is improperly loaded onto the truck, it is possible for the cargo to fall off and damage other vehicles on the road. Therefore, cargo loaders have a responsibility to load trucks properly to avoid any danger and risk the chance of being liable for a trucking accident.

Truck Manufacturers

Truck manufacturers are another party that may be liable for a truck accident. For example, if the truck manufacturer knowingly installed a faulty or defective part or spotted an issue without reporting it to the trucking company or truck driver, they could be held responsible for their negligence. 

Another Driver

It is important to bear in mind that just because a truck is involved in an accident, does not imply the truck driver is at fault. While trucks are more likely to inflict much greater damage than any other vehicle they may encounter on the road, it is important to not presume where the liability laws. Try to avoid making assumptions and consider the potential parties who may be liable.

Author: Brandon Park