Big rigs often transport weighty and hazardous cargo, making collisions more dangerous for those involved. Accidents involving these vehicles have the potential to cause major property damage, injury, and wrongful death.
If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a big rig accident, a Marion big rig accident lawyer from the Fitch Law Firm LLC may be able to help you. We can work to establish liable parties and negotiate a settlement on your behalf. If our legal team is not able to secure you a fair settlement outside the courtroom, we will defend your position in trial.
Common Risks Present in Marion Big Rig Accidents
Big rig accidents carry many of the same risks present in other types of automobile accidents. However, there are some additional factors to consider when a big rig causes a collision.
Type of Cargo
Cargo size and type dramatically affect how a driver handles their big rig. Heavy, off-balance, and liquid loads can compromise the rig’s stability and make it harder for the driver to maintain control. In addition, big rigs transporting hazardous materials pose a greater risk of fires and explosions.
Inclement Weather and Poor Conditions
Commercial drivers who transport hazardous materials often exercise extreme caution on the roads, but some accidents are nearly impossible to avoid due to bad weather, road conditions, and other factors.
Big rig accidents sometimes occur at high speeds. When these heavy vehicles are moving fast, it is hard for them to come to a stop quickly. This is especially true once a big rig has been loaded with cargo. The added weight of a full load further increases the distance the driver needs to come to a complete stop.
In fact, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), loaded big rigs require a 20 to 40 percent greater distance to stop compared to passenger vehicles. Inclement weather conditions and poorly maintained brakes only serve to amplify the problem.
When a truck’s inability to slow down causes a collision, the resulting injuries and vehicle damage can be devastating. Our big rig accident attorneys are here to help you weather the aftermath of a severe truck crash in Marion.
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Driver Error Can Lead to Big Rig Crashes
Driver fault can also cause big rig accidents. With long hours and late-night shifts, big rig drivers may turn to stimulants, alcohol, or other controlled substances. Such substances can dramatically impede a driver’s ability to operate their rig safely.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires employers to test their commercial truck drivers for controlled substances as soon as possible after an accident. Your attorney can use these test results to help them build your case.
Other common forms of driver error that can cause big rig accidents include:
- Driving while drowsy
- Texting while driving
- Distracted driving
- Reckless driving
- Aggressive driving
You Should Not Have to Pay For Someone Else’s Mistake
Due to the sheer size of big rigs, even a minor accident can lead to irreparable damage for anyone involved. If you are injured as a result of someone else’s negligent or wrongful actions, you should not have to suffer the consequences. A Marion big rig accident lawyer from the Fitch Law Firm LLC can build a case that represents your interests if you decide to work with us.
We will communicate with all involved parties and work to negotiate a settlement that covers the losses you experienced due to the accident.
The Last Thing You Should Worry About Is How You’re Going To Pay For Your Medical Bills.Talk To a Lawyer Now »
Handling Injuries and Pursuing Compensation After a Big Rig Accident in Marion
Personal injuries from big rig accidents range in severity. Many injuries require emergency medical attention, ongoing hospital visits, physical therapy, and other forms of medical intervention. Some injuries may leave you immobile for weeks or months, while others develop into lifelong medical complications that radically diminish your quality of life.
Some common injuries caused by accidents with big rigs include:
- Broken bones
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Burns and lacerations
- Spinal cord injuries
Seek Medical Attention As Soon As Possible
If you were hurt in an accident with a commercial truck in Marion, you should visit a doctor as soon as possible. Even injuries that may seem small at first can develop into much larger problems if you do not seek treatment promptly. For example, traumatic brain injuries such as concussions may present only minor symptoms at first, only to worsen as the days and weeks go by.
In addition to ensuring your health and well-being, your emergency room visit will provide the necessary documentation to support your claim. Your truck accident lawyer will use medical records, doctor testimony, and hospital bills to establish the financial value of your losses and prove your injuries’ severity.
Compensation Available in a Marion Big Rig Accident Case
Truck accident injuries carry severe consequences for those who experience them, including physical, psychological, and financial losses. If you sustained injuries in a big rig accident, then you may qualify for compensation to cover medical expenses. This can include the costs of ambulance transportation from the scene of the accident, surgeries, medication, physical therapy, rehabilitation programs, and other forms of ongoing treatment.
The physical injuries associated with big rig accidents are difficult to deal with, but they are not the only form of damage you may receive in an accident of this caliber. If you are stuck in a hospital bed after an accident and you have to miss work, then you may be eligible to receive compensation for lost wages.
You Deserve Compensation for All the Losses You Sustained
Legal teams will also examine other compensable factors, such as psychological trauma, pain and suffering, and loss of the ability to enjoy life. Of course, property damage is also typical in big rig accidents. A truck accident lawyer with experience handling Ohio injury claims can work to pursue any recoverable damages that may be available to you.
Other compensatory damages we may seek on your behalf include:
- Reduced earning capacity
- Vocational rehabilitation and education for a career change
- Lifestyle modifications due to chronic disability
- Inability to participate in activities you used to enjoy
- Your reduced overall quality of life
- Psychological therapy
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) treatment
Punitive Damages for Gross Negligence in Ohio
Per Ohio Revised Code (ORC) § 2315.21, you could seek punitive damages if the at-fault party’s conduct was malicious, aggravated, or egregious. Unlike the above compensatory damages, punitive damages punish the responsible party for flagrant wrongdoing.
Ohio law limits punitive damages to twice the amount of awarded compensatory damages. The jury for your case will determine whether punitive damages are warranted and the appropriate amount to award. A truck collision injury lawyer from the Fitch Law Firm LLC will determine if you can seek punitive damages and how best to proceed.
Statute of Limitations for Marion Truck Accident Claims
When you suffer a severe injury due to a truck accident, you have a limited time to file a lawsuit. While the first step of the claims process often involves filing a claim with the insurance company, you might have little time to pursue your claim if you had a lengthy hospital stay recovering from your injuries.
ORC § 2305.10 provides two years from the accident date for personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits against the at-fault party. However, this timeframe could vary depending on the circumstances of your truck accident. As a result, your attorney will advise you of the appropriate timeframe for your case.
Protect your right to compensation for your losses after a big rig accident by contacting an attorney as soon as possible. The Marion truck accident lawyers at the Fitch Law Firm LLC are here to handle the settlement negotiations and legal filings. We will ensure that you meet the required legal deadlines to have the best possible chance for a fair settlement.
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Big rig accidents can leave you in a world of physical, psychological, and financial hurt. Dealing with the fallout from a severe accident is often challenging, no matter how tough you are.
A Marion big rig truck accident lawyer from the Fitch Law Firm LLC can step in to represent your legal interests so that you are free to focus on recovering as fast as possible. Reach out to our office today to learn more.
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