“Big rig” is a term generally used to denote a cargo truck. Whether the truck is a semi-trailer or full tractor-trailer, various forms of big rig present many of the same dangers to other drivers and passengers who they share the road with. Big rigs weigh a lot, are difficult to control at high rates of speed and can cause serious injury or death when involved in an accident.
If you or a loved one was injured or killed in a collision involving a big rig, you could be eligible for compensation for your losses. Call our team to contact a Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers Lafayette big rig lawyer today at (337) 777-7777 for a free consultation.
Big Rigs Present a Great Danger
Big rigs remain an integral part of our national and state economies, but you must understand that they are also a great threat when not driven with proper care.
The U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration imposes state truck size and weight limit laws on big rigs using the Interstate Highway System. The “limit” for freight trucks is 80,000 pounds. So that you have an idea of how significant this weight is, the average passenger car weighs around 4,000 pounds, according to an Environmental Protection Administration report discussed by The New York Times.
This immense weight and the nature of driving big rigs present a number of dangers, including:
- A reduced ability to stop quickly because it takes longer to stop a heavier object traveling at high speeds than it does a lighter one
- Decreased maneuverability due to the size and weight of big rigs, making them more susceptible to crashing, especially in sub-optimal driving conditions
- When big rigs do get into collisions, their weight enables them to inflict much greater damage on the vehicle they collide with than a smaller, lighter vehicle would
- Drivers of big rigs routinely drive long distances spanning many consecutive hours, which may make them more susceptible to the risks of drowsy driving, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
While it is not fair to generalize about the fitness or attentiveness of truck drivers, statistics indicate that carelessness is a central factor in the majority of accidents involving large trucks such as big rigs. According to a large truck crash case causation study by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 87% of crashes involving large trucks were due to driver error or inattentiveness.
For a free legal consultation with a big rig lawyer serving Lafayette, call (337) 777-7777
Distracted Driving Habits Can Often Be Avoided
Semi-truck drivers are human, which means that they are vulnerable to the distractions that non-big rig drivers are, including but not limited to cell phone use and general inattentiveness. Some dangerous forms of distracted driving include:
- Talking or texting on the phone while driving, whether it is hands-free or not
- Manipulating the car’s entertainment system while driving
- Taking attention away from the road to deal with freight-related communications or activities
- Averting attention from the road to tend to pets or other occupants in a vehicle
- Taking eyes off of the road to engage with other motorists
If you or a loved one was injured or killed in a collision involving a big rig, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. Call our team at Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers today at (337) 777-7777 for a free consultation from a Lafayette big rig lawyer.
Lafayette Big Rig Lawyer Near Me (337) 777-7777
Let a Lawyer Handle Your Case
If you are dealing with serious injury or a loved one’s death after an accident involving a big rig, allow a lawyer to assist you. They can help you decide who is liable for your losses, as additional defendants such as a trucking company may be responsible along with the driver of the big rig.
Some ways that a lawyer may be able to help include:
- Starting your case right away by filing the necessary documentation
- Helping you identify the party or parties that are liable for your injuries or loved one’s death
- Documenting evidence of the accident, its cause, and its aftermath, including video, photographs, eyewitness accounts, and police reports
- Speaking with your doctor to obtain documentation of your injuries
- Taking care of all of the legal responsibilities necessary to bring your case to completion, whether through a judgement or settlement
- Protecting your rights throughout the legal process
- Keeping you updated and aware at all stages of your case
- Answering any questions you may have
- Representing you in court, if necessary
One central goal your lawyer will have is to prove that the driver of the big rig acted negligently, a goal that will be critical in your pursuit of compensation.
Do Not Wait to Call
The majority of personal injury and wrongful death claims are restricted by statutes of limitations, which are time periods within which you must bring legal action. In Louisiana, the statute of limitations for both wrongful death and personal injury claims is generally one year from the date of the accident under Art. 3492 of the Louisiana Civil Code. A limited time frame of this kind makes it critical that you call a lawyer right away.
There can be exceptions to these statutes, so call a lawyer regardless of the time that has passed since your accident.
Potential Compensation You May Recover
Every personal injury and wrongful death claim is unique, and damages vary on a case-by-case basis. With this said, compensation in your case may cover:
- Medical costs related to the accident
- Lost wages or diminished earning capacity stemming from injuries sustained in the accident
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages against the defendant
Additional damages for a wrongful death claim may cover:
- The loss of financial protection for you and your family resulting from your loved one’s death
- The loss of spousal companionship
- The loss of guidance for children of the deceased
- Funeral costs
A Lafayette big rig lawyer may be able to pursue other forms of damages, depending on the details of your case. For instance, if your loved one’s death was due to a faulty part in a truck, we may be able to pursue punitive damages against the manufacturer in a defective product lawsuit.
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Call Our Team at Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers Today
If you were in an accident involving a big rig, or you lost a loved one in such an accident, then let us work for you while you take this time to recover from your injuries or grieve while a lawyer handles your pursuit of compensation. Call our team at Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers today at (337) 777-7777 for a free consultation.