When an occupant of a car, SUV, or even a relatively small truck is involved in a collision with a semi, tractor-trailer, or other large commercial motor vehicle (CMV), the consequences can be catastrophic and often deadly. Injuries sustained by survivors of these accidents can have devastating and life-altering effects, including limb amputation, organ damage, traumatic brain damage, and paralysis. When a truck accident is caused by the negligence of a truck driver, a trucking company, or a defect in one or more of the involved vehicles, the injured victims or deceased victims’ survivors may be entitled to damages through legal action. Truck Accident Lawyer Pennsylvania firm Killino lawyers will fight on your side to ensure you get maximum compensation
If you or one of your family members was injured in a traffic accident involving a truck due to driver or trucking-company negligence or a defective vehicle, you may be able to receive financial damages from the responsible parties. The Killino Firm’s Pennsylvania truck-accident attorneys have extensive experience with truck-accident cases, including those arising out of accidents caused by driver and trucking-company negligence or defective trucks and other motor vehicles. Contact The Killino Firm’s trucking-injury lawyers at 877-875-2927 for a cost-free evaluation of your case and more information about your legal rights and options.
Legal Liability for Truck Accident Injuries and Deaths Caused by Driver or Trucking Company Negligence
Most of the larger trucks that travel our nation’s highways are engaged in interstate commerce and are, therefore, subject to certain federal trucking-operation rules known as Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR). These regulations, which are published by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), govern everything from the number of hours a trucker may drive during a certain period of time, to pre-trip safety inspections, record-keeping, and other matters affecting the safety of truckers and other vehicle occupants. Truck drivers and the companies that employ and/or dispatch them may be held liable in negligence personal-injury or wrongful-death actions for truck-accident injuries and deaths determined to have been caused by FMCSR violations. Truckers and trucking companies may also be held legally responsible for accident victims’ injuries or deaths caused by negligent behavior that does not violate any specific FMCSR or other traffic rule or law.
A trucker may be found to have violated FMCSR hours of service (HOS) regulations, for example, if the trucker failed to take required rests or drove for too many consecutive days. If the trucker is involved in an injury-causing accident while committing an HOS violation, the trucker may be found negligent per se and held legally responsible for any injuries and deaths determined to have resulted from the HOS violation. Even if a trucker has strictly complied with HOS regulations (which were designed to reduce accidents caused by truck-driver fatigue), the driver may, nevertheless, be found negligent for driving while overly fatigued and may be held liable for injuries or deaths suffered by victims of an accident caused by the truck driver’s fatigue.
The FMCSR also hold truck drivers to strict rules regarding the use of alcohol and controlled substances. If a trucker is involved in an accident while in violation of these rules or while otherwise impaired by alcohol or another substance, the driver may be required to pay damages for injuries or deaths sustained in an accident that is found to have been caused by the driver’s FMCSR violation or other impairment.
The FMCSR also apply to trucking companies that hire or dispatch truck drivers in interstate commerce. Thus, a trucking company that requires a trucker to violate HOS or other regulations may also be held directly liable for injuries and deaths caused by the trucker’s violation. A trucking company may also be found directly liable for accident injuries and deaths caused by a negligent truck driver if the company is shown to have negligently screened, hired, trained, monitored, or retained the negligent driver. A trucking company may also be found directly liable for negligently entrusting an incompetent or inadequately experienced or trained driver with a truck or the activity of commercial trucking; such liability may occur both when the company has employed the driver and when it has not employed but has merely dispatched the driver. Trucking companies that employ truck drivers may also be found indirectly liable for injuries and deaths caused by their employee-drivers’ negligence that occurs within the drivers’ scope of employment.
Legal Liability for Truck Accident Injuries and Deaths Caused by Defective Trucks and other Motor Vehicles
Truck accidents, like other accidents involving motor vehicles, may also be caused by defective trucks or other vehicles. Trucks are required to be manufactured in compliance with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS). A truck may be found defective under Pennsylvania products-liability law for a violation of FMVSS or for any other defect in its design, manufacture, or warnings that rendered the truck unreasonably dangerous for it intended and expected use. When such a defect in a truck or other motor vehicle is found to have been a cause of a truck accident, the vehicle’s manufacturer and others in the vehicle’s chain of production and distribution (such as the vehicle’s designer, suppliers, assemblers, and distributors) may be held strictly liable for truck-accident injuries and deaths determined to have been caused by the vehicle defect. Strict liability means liability without proof of fault, so that plaintiffs may establish the defendants’ liability by proving that a defect existed at the time the vehicle was sold and at the time the accident occurred, that the defect was a cause of the accident, and that the accident victims sustained injuries and damages as a result.
Truck Accident Lawyer Pennsylvania Reviews
Working with several difficult cases, Killino firm has built a stellar reputation as the leading truck accident lawyers in Pennsylvania. Clients consistently rank us 5 stars during reviews collected.
If you have been injured or one of your family members has died in a truck accident due to someone’s negligence or a defective truck or other vehicle, The Killino Firm’s Pennsylvania truck-accident lawyers can help you obtain the justice you deserve from the parties responsible for your injury or loved one’s death. Contact us at 877-875-2927 for aggressive and expert assistance with your trucking-accident case.