Largo Jackknife Truck Accident Attorney
Environmental conditions, usually wet road surfaces, often contribute to jackknife truck accidents. Operator error, usually excessive speed, causes such crashes. As a rule of thumb, every 10mph of speed above 55mph increases the chances of a jackknife wreck by about 50 percent. Some of these wrecks essentially occur before the trucker hits the road. A failure to conduct a pre-departure inspection and correct issues like bad brakes or bald tires might cause a jackknife crash as well.
Severe spine injuries are very common in these cases. Victims are exposed to massive forces that no safety restraint system can possibly absorb. Additionally, many victims are pinned underneath these land barges until emergency responders can cut them out of their crumpled vehicles. Spines are very delicate. Any change in the alignment of the thirty-three bones and twenty-six vertebrae that form the spine could cause extremely serious injuries. The lifetime medical bills in a serious case could exceed $5 million.
These issues mean these cases are incredibly complex. The experienced Largo jackknife truck accident attorneys at The Reep Law Firm know how to break these matters down and clearly explain your legal options. Furthermore, over the years, we have developed proven evidence collection and other case preparation methods. Careful and thorough preparation on the front end usually leads to better results on the back end. These results include the financial compensation you and your family need and deserve.
First Party Liability
Truck drivers are common carriers in Florida. Since these individuals have a higher duty of care than noncommercial motorists, almost any driving misstep constitutes negligence, or a lack of care.
Driver impairment and aggressive driving are the most common breaches of the duty of care in Florida.
Impairment often includes driver fatigue. Some truck drivers are impaired because they’ve been behind the wheel too long. Driving after eighteen consecutive awake hours is like driving with a .05 BAC level. That’s above the legal limit for commercial operators in Florida. Circadian rhythm fatigue often comes into play as well. Most people are naturally drowsy early in the morning and late at night. Most truckers are on the road at these times.
On a related note, over a third of truckers admit they use amphetamines to counteract the effects of drowsiness. These pills might make users feel more alert. However, these pills also cloud judgment ability, so drivers take too many reckless chances. Additionally, when the effects of these pills wear off, users crash fast and hard.
Aggressive driving includes speeding and making an unsafe turn or lane change. These bad driving maneuvers, and others as well, violate the Florida traffic code. If a safety law violation causes injury, the tortfeasor (negligent driver) is presumptively liable for damages in Florida. Therefore, it’s easier for a Largo jackknife truck accident attorney to obtain maximum compensation in these cases.
Third Party Liability
Truck drivers are legally responsible for the wrecks they cause. The company that employed the driver is often financially responsible for the wreck, because of the respondeat superior rule. This doctrine applies if an employee is negligent during the course and scope of employment.
The “employee” designation is usually the key to a vicarious liability finding. In Florida, truckers are employees for negligence purposes, even if they are owner-operators or another non-employee for tax and other purposes.
Third party liability is important for justice in a personal injury case. If trucking and shipping companies must pay for negligent injuries, they will more closely supervise their drivers and ensure they drive safely.
Connect With a Diligent Pinellas County Attorney
Injury victims are usually entitled to significant compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced jackknife truck accident attorney in Largo, contact Reep, Coleman & Stubbendorff. We routinely handle matters throughout the Tampa Bay area.