Helping Truck Accident Victims Recover Damages in Denver and Throughout Colorado
Accidents involving tractor-trailers and other commercial vehicles are among the most catastrophic accidents that can occur on our roadways. When an 18-wheeler strikes a car, SUV or other vehicles, severe injuries and fatalities are the likely result. If you or a loved one has been injured in this type of devastating collision, you need to seek advice from an experienced Denver truck accident attorney. Each Denver truck accident lawyer at Levine Law understands the laws and regulations governing the trucking industry and will work to ensure that you recover full compensation for your damages and losses.
Colorado Truck Accident Facts
In Denver and throughout the state of Colorado, trucks and passenger cars must share the road every day. Trucks are very different than cars in size, structure and operation. Unfortunately, when trucks and cars share the road, sometimes accidents happen. When they do, the fundamental differences between trucks and other vehicles on the roadway can lead to disaster.
Truck accident victims often sustain very painful and life-changing injuries, and in worst-case situations, the resulting injuries can be fatal. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), 116,000 people were injured in large truck crashes in 2015 alone, and over 4,000 people were killed. Invariably, when a tractor-trailer weighing up to 80,000 pounds strikes an average car weighing 30,000 pounds, the injuries are going to be far more severe than when two passenger cars collide.
A Denver Truck Accident Attorney to Provide the Legal Help You Need
At Levine Law, our lawyers have extensive experience handling the unique issues and challenges that arise in truck accident cases. If you have been involved in a collision with a commercial vehicle and you have suffered an injury as a result, the attorneys at Levine Law are here to help you every step of the way. We know that a serious accident can change your life – and the lives of the people you care most about – in an instant. The exorbitant costs associated with life-saving medical care and ongoing rehabilitation, combined with the loss of income and a total disruption of your life’s routine can be traumatic for your entire family. No one should ever have to deal with the aftermath of a trucking accident on their own.
At Levine Law, we are here to provide the legal advice and direction you need to deal with a very challenging situation. We encourage you to contact a Denver truck accident attorney at our firm so that we can help you get the financial compensation you need to get your life back on track. Our lawyers understand that you probably have many questions about your case. We promise to provide you with clear and honest answers so that you can make informed decisions for you and your family. We also encourage you to read through the information below so that you have a better understanding of some of the unique issues associated with truck accident cases.
How Truck Accidents and Car Accidents Differ
Crashes involving two passenger cars are very different from accidents involving a truck and an automobile. Some of the inherent characteristics of trucks make accidents more likely and increase the chance of serious injuries in a crash. For example:
- Trucks, such as 18-wheelers, weigh up to 80,000 pounds. Most passenger cars weigh 3,000 to 5,000 pounds – about 1/20th the weight of a fully-loaded tractor-trailer.
- Trucks often have air brakes, which require more maintenance and upkeep and which function differently than passenger brakes.
- Trucks have larger blind spots than passenger vehicles, and cars can easily disappear in the blind spots.
- Trucks have a longer stopping distance than passenger vehicles.
- Trucks are prone to jackknifing, which means that the trailer of a tractor-trailer swing widely out and the truck folds onto itself in an acute angle. The vehicle can become locked in this position, skid across the road and get stuck. Jackknifing can lead to a multi-vehicle accident that causes serious injuries.
- Trucks, with their high center of gravity, are more likely to roll over when a crash occurs or when the driver loses control. Cars can be crushed underneath the truck when it rolls.
Our law firm understands how these factors can magnify the dangers associated with a collision. When a truck vs. automobile accident occurs, we launch an immediate and thorough investigation of the case, preserving and analyzing evidence and interviewing key witnesses to help ensure that our clients receive maximum compensation for their claim. As these claims are typically more complex, it's critical to discuss your claim with a Denver truck accident attorney as soon as possible.
Causes of Truck Accidents in Colorado
Because of the increased risks associated with large trucks, semis and other trucks, such vehicles must be driven by qualified and experienced drivers with special commercial driver's licenses. Unfortunately, a nationwide shortage of truck drivers has prompted many trucking companies to hire drivers with insufficient experience to handle big rigs. Further, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) indicates that driver-related factors are the cause of 31 percent of fatal truck crashes. These factors can include:
- Drowsy driving
- Failure to stay in the correct lane
- Distracted driving
Common Injuries Associated With Truck Wrecks in Denver
When a truck collides with a car or SUV in Denver or elsewhere throughout Colorado, the occupants of the vehicle are likely to suffer very serious and painful injuries. While these types of accidents can have a wide range of effects on the human body, some of the most common injuries include:
- Head and brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Damage to internal organs
- Neck and back injuries
- Internal bleeding and other injuries
- Torso and rib injuries
- Cuts and lacerations
- Bone fractures
- Amputation injuries
- Wrongful Death
It is important to realize that even if you don’t think you have been hurt, you should seek medical attention if you have been involved in a trucking accident. Some injuries may not appear until days, weeks, or even months after the incident, so you need to be evaluated by a qualified medical professional. Additionally, should your problems get worse or new symptoms arise, you need to follow-up with your health care provider.
Depending on the type of injuries you have sustained, the defendant’s insurance company may try to assert that your injuries are due to a pre-existing condition. For instance, if you are suffering from a back injury, the defense may argue that your injury was not caused by the accident, rather it was due to a back problem that existed prior to the truck crash. Each Denver truck accident lawyer at our Denver accident law firm are very familiar with these types of tactics and will gather the evidence necessary to help prove that your injury was the product of the defendant’s actions and that the defendant should be liable for your damages.
Multiple Parties Can be Held Liable When a Truck Accident Occurs
Oftentimes when a trucking accident occurs, multiple parties can be held legally responsible for the accident. If a truck driver causes a crash in Denver, the driver can be liable for any injuries that result. The company that employs the truck driver may also be held legally responsible in many cases. Additionally, the employer can be held responsible under legal principles called "agency rules," which hold the employer responsible for the actions of an employee. The employer can also be held responsible for negligent hiring, supervision or maintenance.
Beyond the truck driver and the trucking company, there are other entities that may have played a part in the accident, including maintenance and repair companies, the manufacturer of the vehicle or any of its parts and the cargo-loading company. These parties will often argue over who bears financial responsibility for compensating victims. At Levine Law, each Denver truck accident attorney knows how to sort through the evidence and chains of command and will make certain that all responsible parties are held accountable for your injuries.
Laws and Regulations Governing the Trucking Industry
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) holds primary authority for establishing and enforcing laws and regulations aimed at reducing truck number of truck accidents on our roads and highways. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) established by the FMSCA, set forth an extensive set of rules and standards regulating the trucking industry. Additionally, at the state level, various agencies such as the Colorado Department of Transportation, establish and enforce laws governing the operation of trucks and other commercial vehicles within the state.
Our truck accident lawyers in Denver have a full understanding of the rules and requirements that trucking companies and drivers must abide by. When drivers and companies violate these laws and an accident occurs, we are here to aggressively advocate for the victims’ rights to compensation. Our legal team will initiate a comprehensive investigation of the crash, working to identify and hold all negligent parties fully responsible.
Trust a Denver Truck Accident Attorney at Levine Law
When you have been involved in a Denver-area truck crash, you need a qualified truck accident lawyer on your side. Our attorneys can help you understand who to make a claim against and we will work with you to build your case. We are well-known throughout the Denver region and beyond as smart and aggressive negotiators and trial attorneys capable of getting optimal recoveries for truck accident victims. We understand what you are going through and are committed to making sure you receive the compensation you deserve.
The dedicated legal team Levine Law is here to help. Contact us online or call us any time at 303-333-8000; our phones are answered 24/7. We offer free initial consultations to victims and their families and we handle all truck accident claims on a contingency fee basis, which means there is no fee involved unless we win your case.