Small sedans and other motor vehicles are no match for an 18-wheeler tractor trailer or other large-sized truck traveling down the highway at a high rate of speed. Due to their extremely large size and speed, as well as their inability to stop quickly, tractor-trailers and other large trucks are prone to causing accidents. Given our extremely mobile society, commuters on Florida’s highways and interstates encounter these trucks twice a day, five days a week.
In most truck accident cases, the trucking company is the primary responsible defendant. These trucking companies are not only responsible for dispatching competent, careful, and safe truck drivers, but they are also responsible for ensuring that these drivers (as well as the companies themselves) comply with all applicable .1
All too often, however, trucking companies prioritize profits over safety, thereby endangering the lives of all other drivers on the roadway. What follows are just a few ways in which trucking companies are negligent for causing truck accidents:
1.Failing to train drivers appropriately and thoroughly about the following:
- proper driving techniques
- safety concerns and procedures
- defensive driving tactics and skills
2.Failing to screen driver applicants by searching for a history of:
- drunk driving and other alcohol or drug-related driving offenses
- reckless or negligent driving convictions
3.Compensating truck drivers (or offering bonuses) for delivering merchandise faster:
- causing drivers to drive faster and more carelessly
- encouraging drivers to continue driving, even while fatigued
4.Creating unrealistic driving schedules and expectations:
- encouraging drivers to drive without breaks or rest for long periods
- encouraging reckless and careless driving
5.Failing to equip trucks with the necessary safety equipment, such as the following:
- reflective lights
- undercarriage lights
Holding Trucking Companies Responsible
Trucking companies and their insurers are aware of the fact that they can incur significant liability after an accident. As a result, trucking accident cases are often highly contested, and insurers often engage in tactics designed to get victims to admit that their own 2 contributed to the accident. For example, some insurance companies may pressure victims to give a written statement regarding the accident when one is not required.
Another tactic that trucking company insurers may use to limit their liability is to make a settlement offer immediately after an accident, often before victims have had the opportunity to retain an attorney. Generally speaking, these kinds of offers are well below what the case is actually worth, and insurance companies are trying to take advantage of the fact that victims are often unable to accurately assess the actual value of their case. For this reason, anyone injured in a trucking accident should always speak to a lawyer prior to accepting a settlement offer. Failing to do so could result in substantial uncompensated losses.
Contact a Clearwater Truck Accident Attorney Today to Discuss Your Case
Trucking companies’ negligence can have catastrophic consequences on the roadway. Fortunately, under Florida law, injured plaintiffs are entitled to receive compensation for injuries sustained in a truck accident caused by the negligence of a trucking company and/or a truck driver. An experienced truck accident attorney can represent you throughout your case and help you to receive the compensation you’re entitled to under the law.