Boston is a shipping and transportation hub. Whether you are visiting or going about your daily routine as a local, you will inevitably encounter many types of commercial trucks hauling goods around town and to other parts of the country. Some of these commercial trucks, like eighteen-wheelers or big rigs, can be intimidating vehicles.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries in a Boston truck T-Bone accident, you may be able to collect compensation from the negligent driver or other at-fault parties.
When you get injured in a Boston truck T-Bone accident, you need confidence that your legal team is up to the challenge. Truck accidents involve many potential sources of liability, so you need a lawyer who is not only experienced in truck accidents but also one who is aggressive enough to stand up to the big trucking companies and their insurance representatives. Your injuries may be extremely severe, so you need to trust that your legal advocate has your best interests in mind every step of the way.
A T-Bone accident is also called a side-impact collision. These accidents frequently occur at intersections where one vehicle runs a red light or stop sign. One of the most dangerous intersections, according to the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT), is Columbia Road and I-93 in Dorchester.
What makes T-Bone accidents so tragic is the fact that they often occur at high speeds. When a T-Bone involves a semi-truck, the results can be catastrophic and deadly. Because big rigs are so much larger than your car, the force of the impact can crush smaller vehicles, leaving victims with lifelong injuries.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injuries, referred to as a TBI, are common injuries after a truck T-Bone accident. A TBI comes in many forms, but generally in accidents that contort or hit the head or torso.
Over 100 people die every day from a TBI. Concussions are the most well-known TBI, but you can sustain more serious types. When someone suffers a TBI, they may lose consciousness and, if not correctly and promptly treated, suffer lifelong consequences.
Soft Tissue Injuries
Soft tissue injuries happen when muscle, nerves, and other tissues suffer damage. Whiplash is one of the most common soft tissue injuries. In serious crashes like truck accidents, severe soft tissue injuries may cause permanent damage. In some cases, soft tissue can tear, causing excruciating pain for the victim and requiring multiple medical procedures and rehabilitation to fix.
In serious vehicle accidents, victims’ bodies can get crushed. When this happens, body parts, especially limbs, can suffer oxygen loss to the point that the body part begins to die.
If severe enough, amputation may be necessary to save the victim’s life. Sometimes, a victim may need a hand or foot amputated and, other times, an entire limb might need to be amputated. While modern science and technology has come a long way and can provide prosthetic limbs, it’s no replacement for the original body part and will still require that the victim undergo extensive rehabilitation to help them learn how to live with their altered lifestyle.
Spinal Cord Injuries and Paralysis
Along with the sheer force of an impact with a tractor-trailer, your body may contort and be pushed rapidly in one direction. This can cause spinal cord injuries.
The spinal cord is the message system for the body and, if any part of the spinal cord is injured, messages cannot get through in their entirety or are sometimes partially blocked. This can paralyze a victim, leaving them unable to move their body below the injury site. If you suffered a spinal cord injury in your lower back, you may lose the ability to control your legs. Not only will this require significant work to change your lifestyle, but it will also require substantial medical bills to ensure that you get the care and attention you deserve.
The injuries you may suffer after a Boston truck T-Bone accident may alter your life forever. But determining exactly who has caused your accident is much more difficult. Trucks have many moving parts and people who could have made mistakes that contributed to your crash.
An intense investigation can get to the bottom of who or what caused your accident The police will certainly investigate, but you need a much more detailed look. Your lawyer may even hire a truck accident reconstruction expert to provide it.
Multiple Sources of Liability
That’s what makes truck accidents so complex—multiple people and companies could be at fault for your accident. Determining which party or parties to hold accountable may only come after a thorough and complete investigation. Many people and companies could have caused your accident, and we discuss the most common ones here.
After any car accident, the most obvious place to look for fault is one of the drivers. In a truck T-Bone accident, the truck driver may be to blame.
Common reasons for truck drivers to cause accidents include:
- Running a red light
- Distracted driving
- Drowsy driving
- Driving too fast for the weather conditions
- Aggressive driving
Driver fatigue is a serious problem for truck drivers. The National Transportation Safety Board estimates that driver fatigue causes between 30 and 40 percent of all commercial truck accidents. Because this may constitute a systemic problem, the driver isn’t always the only one to blame.
If a company employs the driver, then their employer may also hold liability. Trucking companies can bear fault when they fail to properly train a truck driver. They may also bear liability when they did not do a thorough background check before hiring the driver.
For example, if the employer did not verify the truck driver’s history and check to see if they had any violations, they could bear liability for your accident. Holding the trucking company accountable may also lead to a larger recovery for your injuries.
Many times, trucking companies haul cargo that a shipping company loaded. If a shipping company improperly secured the load, it can shift and cause the driver to lose control of the truck.
A cursory police report would not determine this caused an accident. That’s why it’s vital to your claim that you partner with a skilled Boston truck T-Bone accident lawyer who has resources to help you determine the exact cause of your accident and injuries.
Trucks have thousands of moving parts. Each of those pieces must be assembled precisely to ensure the safe operation of the truck. If a truck manufacturer fails to properly assemble the truck or even just one part, that could directly cause your accident.
Manufacturers must make each component of the truck correctly. Many truck manufacturers buy individual parts from other companies. If an individual part caused your accident, you may sue the component manufacturer.
Because trucks have so many components, they need constant inspections to ensure their safe operation. If a maintenance technician fails to diagnose a problem and fix it, the maintenance company could be held responsible for any accidents that occur.
Even seemingly small things like not inflating the truck’s tires to the right pressure could cause an accident. An overinflated tire, for example, could blow out, causing the driver to lose control of the truck and T-bone into your car at an intersection.
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Once your truck accident lawyer’s accident reconstruction experts have determined the cause of the crash, then you need to file a truck accident personal injury claim for damages. The point of filing a personal injury claim for your truck accident injuries is to try to collect enough money so that you do not end up spending a penny out of your own pocket.
Your lawyer may try to get you compensation for:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Lost income
- Lost earning potential
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of life enjoyment
- Present and future medical expenses
- Rehabilitation costs
- Vehicle costs
- Home renovation costs
What many truck T-Bone accident victims do not realize is just how expensive their medical bills may become. Medical costs have become so high in this country that two-thirds of all bankruptcies filed every year result from medical bills that people cannot afford. Do not let yourself become a statistic.
You can avoid that tragic situation by partnering with a trusted Boston truck T-Bone accident attorney who can help you hold the negligent party liable. By showing that someone else was at fault for your accident and injuries, you may be able to collect compensation from them and avoid carrying the burden of your financial obligations on top of the physical recovery battles you face.
But you cannot delay. Every state sets a strict time limit on how long after your accident you can sue the at-fault party. Under Massachusetts law, that time limit is just three years.
This might seem like a long time but consider everything you may face during those years:
- Multiple medical procedures
- Extended hospital stays
- Long periods out of work
- In facility rehabilitation
- In-home care
During your road to recovery, you will face many challenges and the last thing you need is to worry about a lawsuit. When you speak with an attorney right after your accident, you can have your legal advocate working to collect maximum compensation for you while you put all of your effort and energy into your health and recovery.
Plus, the sooner you speak with a lawyer, the more likely it is that they can collect all the evidence necessary to hold the negligent party responsible for your accident and injuries. Over time, evidence may disappear and witnesses may forget what they saw. The sooner you partner with a trusted legal advocate, the sooner you can focus on your recovery.