Accidents involving an 18-wheeler semi truck are, more often than not, serious collisions that result in major damage to vehicles and their occupants. The sheer weight of a semi is far greater than that of the average vehicle and is capable of generating a lot of damage on impact. Cars and even SUVs don’t fare well in a semi-truck vs. car matchup and the occupants are subject to serious injuries even with seat belts worn and air bags deployed.
Owners, operators, freight company owners, and their insurers are very aware of the amount of damage the semi-truck is capable of. Yet the industry still operates with under qualified drivers, find ways to skirt federal regulations, and push drivers to work while fatigued. The companies and insurers are going to do what they can to prevent victims of an 18-wheeler accident from getting just compensation for their damages and injuries. It’s why victims of an accident with a semi should consult with an 18 wheeler accident lawyer about getting justice.
Freight Operators Know the Risks and Sometimes Ignore Them
A majority of freight operators abide by the law and make sure that their drivers, equipment, and loads are properly secured. Bad operators are not that numerous, but the amount of semi-trucks on the roadways means that it’s a matter of when, not if, an accident is going to happen. Even the best of drivers is going to make a mistake that winds up being costly.
The problems are compounded when operators skirt regulations or drivers do things behind the wheel that are expressly prohibited by law. An inattentive driver or one that’s being pushed to work to the point of fatigue is more likely than not to make a mistake. It’s a bad day when a good driver makes a mistake that results in an accident, but the situation is made worse when the driver or freight operator is doing things they shouldn’t.
All it takes is one bad decision by a truck driver to cause grievous harm to unsuspecting drivers. People can have their lives altered or ended in an instant because a truck driver didn’t follow protocol or the laws.
What to Do After an Accident With a Semi
At first glance, it would seem that the victim of an accident would have the upper hand against the trucking company. The fact of the matter is, the trucking and insurance company are in a better position to dictate the terms of medical care and compensation.
Never negotiate with an insurer without the help of an 18 wheeler accident lawyer. Insurers and trucking companies have lawyers working on their behalf. They do not hesitate to take advantage of accident victims who are negotiating without representation. Accident victims can prevent being victimized again by retaining a lawyer to act on their behalf and improve the odds of a successful resolution.