Who Can Be Held Liable For a Truck Accident?
Accidents involving larger commercial trucks can result in major injuries and property damage, particularly for those inside smaller passenger vehicles. If an individual is harmed due to the negligent actions of a truck driver or truck carrier, they should be able to recover compensation for their losses. However, it is important to determine liability in these situations. Here, we want to examine some of the possible liable parties after a truck accident occurs in Washington.
Commercial truck drivers have tremendous responsibilities on the roadways. These drivers must obtain their commercial driver’s licenses and then undergo company-specific training before they operate their vehicles on the roadway. However, drivers can make mistakes, and this can lead to serious accidents. Truck drivers could be held liable for an incident if their negligence caused the crash, which can often occur due to drivers:
- Driving too fast for conditions
- Failing to abide by hours of service requirements
- Operating while distracted
- Following other vehicles too closely
- Failing to stop at stop signs or stop lights
- Taking inappropriate turns
- Operating while impaired by alcohol or drugs
Trucking Carriers or Owner Operators
Trucking companies could be held liable in a variety of ways, including for the negligence of their own drivers. The company will typically hold liability for any truck driver operating in their employ and handling work-related duties when an incident occurs. Trucking companies could also be held liable in their own right in various ways, including:
- Failing to regularly inspect and maintain the vehicles
- Failure properly train new drivers
- Not conducting an adequate background check on employees
- Not following up on complaints about specific drivers
- Encouraging drivers to operate beyond their hours of service
Liability for trucking companies can be challenging, particularly if a truck driver is also the owner-operator of their vehicle. In this case, there will only be a driver and their individual company to hold responsible, not an overall larger company.
There may be various other parties that could hold liability after a truck accident occurs. The process of shipping goods from place to place involves many other parties that could make a mistake and lead to an incident on the roadway. Some other possible liable parties include the following:
- Retailers responsible for the truck or driver
- Third-party cargo loaders
- Mechanics or maintenance teams responsible for the truck
- The manufacturer of the truck or specific parts on the truck
Working With a Truck Accident Lawyer
We strongly encourage any truck accident victim in Washington to reach out to an attorney as soon as possible. Going up against insurance carriers and trucking companies is an incredible challenge, and you need an advocate by your side with experience handling these complex claims. Your Albuquerque truck accident lawyer can investigate every aspect of the truck crash and then investigate any possible liable party before bringing a claim. The ultimate goal is to recover compensation for your medical bills, lost income, property damage expenses, and pain and suffering losses.
Please file your claim today. The statute of limitations for personal injury claims three years from the date an injury occurs, but insurance carriers also have their own deadlines in place. Speak to your lawyer about getting your claim filed as quickly as possible.