When a person is the victim of a traffic accident of this type, they often have to face situations in which insurance and transportation companies tend to take advantage of their resources not to grant the benefits and compensation for accidents with trailers that the law establishes.
Suffering an accident with a trailer, or having been involved in some way in one, is a very delicate situation, since physical injuries and property damage are usually very serious.
On the other hand, when dealing with incidents involving transport companies, there are applicable laws and regulations that make an investigation about the accident mandatory and of course, the determination of responsibility for it.
Therefore, it is recommended that the victim receive the advice and representation of a trailer accident lawyer, so that the claim process is carried out as established and ensures its success.
To make the procedure more fluid, it is important that, if you have suffered an accident with a trailer, you take into account the following information before meeting with your lawyer so that you can prepare your case in the best possible way:
Get details about the shipping company involved, if any. This information includes: company name, truck or trailer license plate number, truck identification details, driver’s name, driver’s license number, etc.
Record how the accident happened and if it was reported to the police.
Find out if any photos or videos were taken or if there was any social media at the accident site.
Try to find out if there were any traffic law violations that the driver was charged with.
Indicate the exact place of the accident and the conditions of the road, if it was wet, slippery, if there were potholes, etc.)
Please indicate if you have contact information for witnesses and others involved in the accident.
Remember if there were other vehicles involved and if an ambulance came to the scene.
Regarding the medical care received after the accident, it is important to have the following records:
Activities that you can no longer perform as a result of the accident.
If you were transferred to a hospital, how long did you stay there?
Your immediate diagnosis
What tests and treatments you received
What additional treatment or follow-up was indicated
Regarding your vehicle, it is important to gather the following data:
Year, make and model
Is there a creditor or interest from a banking institution associated with the vehicle?
Vehicle conditions before and after the accident
Estimated costs of damage to the vehicle
Photographs of the vehicle before and after the accident
Some Facts About Trailer Accidents in Washington State
Large trucks and 18-wheelers are very heavy vehicles that sometimes transport hazardous materials. As a result, truck drivers and manufacturers must meet a much higher set of standards than most drivers.
If you have been in an accident with a commercial vehicle like these, it is very likely that you are entitled to compensation for the injuries you sustained.
According to the Washington State Department of Transportation, in 2015 there were a total of 38 fatal accidents involving trailers and commercial vehicles. There were more than 6,000 heavy truck crashes; a total of 85 serious injury collisions and more than 1,300 minor injury crashes involving 18-wheelers.
In the state of Washington, drivers and trucking companies are governed by federal and state laws, which regulate the weight of their loads, vehicle conditions, licenses, and the number of hours that a driver you are allowed to drive daily.
However, sometimes these rules are not followed, generating traffic accidents and personal injuries, although in many cases, they are fatal accidents.
Additionally, there are safety regulations for the operation of heavy vehicles, traffic laws for their handling and also for drivers of family vehicles when they are near an 18-wheeler trailer.
In these cases, the theory of comparative negligence applies, by means of which the degree of responsibility for the accident is established, and it is possible that, although a person may have been part of the cause of the accident, they can obtain partial compensation.
The Most Common Trailer Accident Injuries
These accidents cause significant – and sometimes permanent – damage to people, given the magnitude of the loads, the size of the trucks, and the materials they transport.
Among the most frequent are:
Head and brain injuries, with consequences such as memory loss, headache, cognitive / mental capacity disorders, loss of motor skills, etc.
Cervical injuries ranging from mild to severe. They generate chronic pain and can cause cervical dislocation.
Injuries to the spine. Depending on the severity of the collision, the victim may lose sensation in the limbs and extremities due to the impact on the spinal cord. In more serious cases, total or partial loss of mobility may occur.
Due to the collision, the person can receive injuries to the internal organs such as the heart, liver, lungs, spleen and kidneys.
Bone fractures, which must be treated properly to avoid permanent ailments.
Burns caused by chemical materials transported in the vehicle
Inhalation poisoning or exposure to toxic chemicals
Death of the victim
You had a trailer accident?
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*Information obtained from: iwadvocates.com