It can be difficult to assign liability in a truck accident because it may not be just the driver who is at fault. There are other parties besides the drivers who could be held responsible in a truck accident. The following are the parties commonly responsible for a truck accident:
Drivers are responsible for safely driving their 18-wheeler, whether empty or loaded. These drivers are under tremendous pressure to get their load to a destination on time. Fatigued truck drivers are a major problem on Florida roads. They often have very little time to rest and can violate hours of service regulations, which put limits on the number of hours they can drive each week. A fatigued truck driver can make some serious mistakes that can cause a truck accident. These include:
- Ignoring traffic signals
- Falling asleep
- Abusing drugs to stay awake
- Distracted driving
- Failing to address medical conditions that could affect their driving
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires that trucking companies hire and train qualified drivers in accordance with federal regulations. They also require drug and alcohol testing and mandatory hours of service. A trucking company could be held responsible for a truck accident that involves driver inexperience, drug use, violations of hours of service regulations along with poorly maintained trucks.
If a trucking company outsources its truck loading these third parties are responsible for making sure the cargo is loaded properly. A cargo company may not load a trailer properly causing an imbalanced trailer which increases the risk of a roll-over accident.
Truck and parts manufacturers
Defective parts could make their way into a truck when it is assembled. This could include a truck’s transmission, braking system and tires. These can lead to problems when the truck is on the road, especially at high speeds.
A truck accident is often a serious situation. If a person has been injured in a truck accident, they may want to speak with a legal professional who is skilled in personal injury. An attorney can help their client understand what happened to cause the accident and who is at fault. Compensation may be available for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages and other damages.