Truck drivers you see on the road are expected to have the training and experience to operate their vehicles safely. Likewise, a trucking company that employs truck drivers must adhere to a number of federal safety standards and practices that mitigate the risk of trucking accidents.
When even one person in the trucking industry is negligent, it can put countless people at risk of sustaining injuries. If you or a loved one was injured in a serious truck accident in Arizona, partnering with a Phoenix truck accident lawyer is the best way to protect your rights.
Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm represents clients in Maricopa County who have been injured in accidents involving tractor-trailers and other commercial vehicles.
Our truck accident attorneys have seen how a truck collision can cause pain, suffering, and significant debt to injured victims. If a truck driver or commercial truck company engaged in negligence that caused your truck collision, we’ll help you hold the at-fault party liable and recover compensation for your losses.
The personal injury law office of Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm handles personal injury claims and wrongful death claims that help victims find healing after commercial vehicle accidents. Contact us for a free case evaluation with a Phoenix truck accident lawyer.
How a Phoenix Truck Accident Lawyer Protects Victims’ Rights
A truck accident claim is a much more complex legal matter than a personal injury claim involving passenger cars. For most car accidents, you simply file a claim with your own or the other driver’s insurance company. On the other hand, truck accident cases usually require victims to file for financial compensation with a powerful commercial trucking operation, their insurer, and the lawyers hired to protect the company.
This can make it nearly impossible for a person without expert legal representation to obtain full and fair compensation for their damages. Most truck accident lawsuits take a year or more to finally reach an outcome.
Truck accident cases typically involve complicating factors such as:
- Catastrophic injuries or wrongful death
- Several insurance policies pertaining to different aspects of the trucking business
- Numerous involved parties at multiple stages of operation that could be liable for the truck crash
- Commercial drivers who may be third-party hires working for another company
- Strict statutes of limitations limiting your time to file a lawsuit
- Trucking companies that have the wealth and resources to do what it takes to evade liability for the actions of their employees
Your Phoenix truck accident attorneys from Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm won’t let any of these challenges stand in the way of your recovery.
After your truck crash, our truck accident lawyers can help you in the following ways.
We’ll Conduct an In-Depth Accident Investigation.
Any accident involving a semi-truck will also involve several other parties essential to commercial transportation. This means there could be one or more liable parties who played a role in your Phoenix truck accident. In some cases, actions that took place months before and miles away from the accident scene could have contributed.
Commercial trucking accidents can involve negligence on the part of:
- Truck drivers
- Trucking companies
- Loading and shipping companies
- Government entities responsible for maintaining roadways
- Drivers of other passenger vehicles
- Companies responsible for truck repairs and maintenance
- The truck’s manufacturer
We Take the Time To Gather Evidence From a Variety of Sources.
Your truck accident attorney will work resourcefully to build an airtight claim that can’t be denied or undervalued by the insurance company. This may require us to file a motion with an Arizona court to prevent companies from destroying or altering important evidence.
We’ll examine, analyze, and gather evidence such as:
- Electronic logging devices (EDLs) and other hours of service (HOS) records that can prove truck driver fatigue and violated HOS regulations
- Event data recorder (EDR, or “black box”) information
- Traffic camera or dashcam footage
- The truck driver’s cell phone records
- Blood and breathalyzer test results
- Truck maintenance and inspection reports
We Fully Understand State and Federal Regulations.
The commercial trucking industry is governed by an extensive structure of laws that apply at the federal, state, and local levels. These laws look different depending on the type of commercial vehicle in question. For example, garbage trucks, tanker trucks, passenger buses, and trucks carrying hazardous materials must all meet different safety standards.
As your Phoenix truck accident lawyers, we’ll search to see what laws applied to your case and if any violations contributed to the crash. We’ll look carefully at the requirements for:
- Loading and securing of the truck’s cargo
- Licenses and CDL endorsements required of drivers
- Equipment, tire, fuel, and lighting requirements
- Emergency preparedness protocol
- Training and practice hours required of truck drivers
- Trailer weight restrictions
We Hold the At-Fault Party Liable for the Negligence That Harmed You.
Negligence that harms and kills others should never be considered “normal,” even if it is standard practice in the industry. As Phoenix truck accident attorneys with a heart for our city and its people, we fight tirelessly to make commercial trucking safer for both drivers and those who share the road with them. We promote a culture of safety and accountability and make sure wrongdoers are held liable.
We Calculate Maximum Compensation for You.
Truck accident claims help victims recover compensation for their economic and noneconomic damages. But calculating an exact number to represent all that you lost is not easy. Our law firm makes it a point to deeply understand the range of ways you were affected by your injuries.
Your medical bills and vehicle repair costs are only the beginning. We know that your pain, emotional turmoil, missed important life events, and inability to participate in the things you once enjoyed are just as impactful. We’ll make sure you recover everything you lost—and can move toward a future in which you are able to enjoy health and financial stability.
How Often Do Truck Accidents Happen in Arizona?
The following statistics were obtained from the Arizona Department of Transportation’s (ADOT) 2021 annual Motor Vehicle Crash Facts report:
- 2,831 truck tractor accidents involving 81 fatal crashes and 784 serious injury crashes
- 274 dump, garbage, and tanker truck accidents (including 3 fatal crashes and 51 injury crashes)
- 10,193 accidents involving other types of combination trucks (including 23 fatal crashes and 2,308 injury crashes)
What Causes Truck Accidents?
No two Phoenix truck accidents are the same. While there could be any number of contributing factors involved in your collision, some of the most common causes of truck crashes include:
Poor Truck Maintenance
Trucking companies need to make sure their trucks are safe. This means the tires are road-ready, the engine is running smoothly, fluid levels are adequate, and steering and brake systems are in working order. If a trucking company conducts substandard maintenance or inspections, a truck crash may result from parts failure or loss of vehicle control.
Drivers may not have the knowledge or experience necessary to safely operate a big rig. In other cases, truck drivers may be careless, reckless, distracted, or intoxicated. No matter the reason for the error, serious truck collisions can result from:
- Poorly executed turns
- Failing to check blind spots
- Improper merging or lane changes
- Loss of control on hills, inclines, and around turns
- Swerving or weaving in and out of lanes
- Braking too abruptly
Truckers often face demanding schedules that can require them to travel thousands of miles over multiple days. While there are stringent regulations dictating when drivers must break to rest, it’s not uncommon for a commercial driver to try to push through exhaustion to get more miles under their belt. Companies that encourage these HOS violations are also responsible for the accidents they cause.
Improper Cargo Loading
When an 18-wheeler is hauling cargo, the company must take measures to ensure the cargo is secured, balanced, and within mandatory limits for weight restrictions. Improper loading can cause cargo to come loose on the highway or throw the vehicle off balance, resulting in a tractor-trailer rollover.
Auto Part Malfunction
If a truck has a faulty auto part, it could malfunction while the trucker is on the road. As large and powerful as they are, commercial trucks are delicate machines in many ways. Even a minor parts failure could be the primary cause of a trucking accident. Your Phoenix truck accident attorneys will make sure a manufacturing company is held liable if a defective part led to your injuries,
Proving Negligence After a Trucking Accident
As your Phoenix, AZ truck accident lawyer investigates your case, we’ll see if the trucking company made a reckless decision, a driver was negligent, or if an auto part manufacturer sold a defective part. When we know who is responsible for your injuries, we’ll start examining evidence to show:
- You were owed a duty of care
- The other party failed to meet this duty of care
- The at-fault party’s negligence caused your accident
- You suffered injuries and compensable damages in the accident
We’ll make sure these points are clear so you have the best chance of getting compensation for your injuries. Someone else’s negligence should never lead to your financial devastation. Our personal injury law firm will make sure you, as the truck accident victim, are treated fairly by the company or individual who caused your injuries.
What Are the Most Common Types of Truck Accidents?
All truck accidents have the potential to result in serious injuries or fatalities. A commercial vehicle is much heavier than the standard passenger vehicle—up to 30 times larger by weight. It’s difficult for a truck driver to regain control of the truck once something has begun to go wrong. Some of the most common and dangerous types of truck accidents include:
If a truck is improperly loaded, experiences a tire blowout, or a driver takes a turn too quickly, the vehicle may lose balance and roll over. These types of tractor-trailer accidents are particularly dangerous to both truck drivers and the occupants of other vehicles near the truck.
A truck jackknife occurs when the trailer and tractor components begin to move in different directions, creating a “V” or “L “shape, similar to a pocketknife. Overloaded trucks are more susceptible to jackknife accidents. An inexperienced driver who doesn’t know to handle slick road surfaces may also be responsible for poor truck handling that results in a jackknife.
An override is when the truck rides over the top of a car in front of it. These accidents are dangerous because the passenger vehicle becomes trapped underneath the truck. The truck can then crush the smaller car and cause severe injuries to its occupants.
If a car follows a tractor-trailer too closely or the truck stops too abruptly, the car may slide underneath the back of the trailer, a type of trucking accident known as an underride accident. These accidents are highly dangerous for the same reasons override accidents are.
Blind Spot Accidents
A truck driver needs to consider the way their line of sight is obstructed by blind spots surrounding the vehicle. Large commercial trucks have blind spots:
- 20 feet in front of the truck cab
- 30 feet behind the back of the trailer
- One lane on the driver’s left side
- Two lanes on the driver’s right side
If a truck driver fails to check carefully before merging on a highway or changing lanes, a passenger vehicle in the blind spot may be struck.
What Are the Most Common Truck Accident Injuries?
Many truck accident victims sustain catastrophic injuries that prevent them from returning to work. These injuries may never fully heal and often result in a disability. Treatment for catastrophic injuries may involve ongoing care, prescription medications to manage symptoms or pain, medical equipment to help with mobility, and physical therapy to maintain strength.
Our Phoenix truck accident lawyers are fully aware of the seriousness of most commercial truck crash injuries. Some of the common injuries we see in collisions involving semi-trucks are:
- Loss of limb
- Spinal cord damage
- Traumatic brain injury
- Broken bones
- Organ damage
All these injuries will require immediate emergency care. The person who was injured may need to be in the hospital for a significant amount of time before they’ve recuperated enough to continue care at home. The costs associated with these injuries, both physical and emotional, can be unthinkably high.
That’s why our Phoenix truck accident attorneys will always protect your rights and fight for the best outcome on your behalf.
What Compensation Can Truck Accident Victims Recover?
In a truck accident case, the victim can seek financial compensation for both economic and noneconomic damages. These encompass the financial and non-tangible losses of the injured party. Your truck accident attorney can examine your situation to see if you are eligible for compensation for:
- Medical bills
- Cost of future medical care
- Property damage
- Lost income
- Diminished earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional injury
- Permanent disability
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Compensation for Families of Fatal Truck Accident Victims
If you lost a close family member in a fatal trucking accident, you may be eligible under Arizona law to file a wrongful death claim in your loved one’s name. Our personal injury lawyers will be able to guide you through the process of obtaining financial compensation for damages such as:
- Funeral, burial, and end-of-life services
- Medical care preceding the decedent’s death
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of income and benefits
- Loss of inheritance
- Loss of consortium
Wrongful death cases are some of the most difficult cases we handle. The suffering of a family who lost a loved one too soon is impossible to imagine. We aim to give our clients the emotional support and legal guidance they need. At the same time, our advocacy is unrelenting as we fight to make sure that financial insecurity does not inhibit your family’s ability to grieve and heal.
A Phoenix, AZ Truck Accident Lawyer Can Protect Your Rights
The trucking company is not going to offer you a fair settlement up front. You’ll need an experienced truck accident attorney to fight for the financial recovery you deserve and are afforded by Arizona law.
This compensation you obtain is essential to your ability to live a full and healthy life. Because it covers necessities like medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earnings, property damage, and other financial costs, an unfairly low settlement would put your future at a severe disadvantage.
Living with your injuries, especially if they have permanent effects, can mean you experience difficulties with even the most basic tasks. Damages like pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life can set you up with the means to achieve the highest quality of life possible.
Our truck accident lawyers in Phoenix, AZ have decades of experience dealing with insurance companies and protecting clients’ rights. We’ll fight for you to get full and fair compensation for your injuries. If this means your case needs to go to court, our accomplished Arizona trial lawyers will be at your side every step of the way.
Let Our Phoenix Truck Accident Lawyers Fight for You
If your commercial truck accident occurred in Phoenix, Maricopa County, or elsewhere in Arizona, Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm is ready to help. Our trucking accident lawyers are expert litigators who know what it takes to win justice for our clients and their families.
We understand how insurance companies may try to pressure you to settle. They may take advantage of the fact that don’t want to keep worrying about having a legal matter hanging over your head. But they will not offer you compensation that’s equal to what you’ve lost. We’ll take the legal matters off your hands while working to secure maximum compensation for your injuries.
A Phoenix, AZ truck accident lawyer from Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm can fully assess all the evidence and seek compensation that will allow you to recover physically, emotionally, and financially.
It’s important to reach out as quickly as possible. Call our office for a free case evaluation today. Our lawyers can go over the legal process and answer any questions you may have.