Overloaded semi-trucks and other large vehicles can cause automobile accidents that result in serious bodily injury or death. Commercial trucks need to be loaded in a precise manner to prevent truck accidents from occurring on the road.
Overloaded Trucks Can Cause Serious Accidents
Mississippi and Tennessee both place weight limits on automobiles to reduce the likelihood of accidents. Trucking companies and truck drivers may neglect to follow these guidelines. Unfortunately, this type of behavior is one of the leading causes of overloaded trucks causing accidents.
The following are common causes of truck accidents:
- Tire blowout
- Low tire pressure
- Rollover accidents
- A truck driver not being able to come to a complete stop
- Driving at an excessive rate of speed
The dangerous conditions that can cause truck accidents. Retaining a truck accident attorney can help you seek financial compensation for your injuries.
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The Damages Injured Victims Can Claim in a Civil Lawsuit
Initiating a civil lawsuit will enable you to assert your legal claims. You can claim damages as part of your case. Generally, damages are divided into economic damages and non-economic damages.
Economic damages are reducible to a specific dollar amount. Some examples of economic damages include lost earnings and medical bills.
Non-economic damages are not quantifiable and are subjective. Emotional distress and physical pain are common examples of non-economic damages. The following are damages that injured victims may claim in a truck accident case:
- Emotional distress
- Lost earning capacity
- Property damage
- Medical treatment
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Pain and suffering
- Lost earnings
- Automobile repair bills
- Costs of surgery
It can take some time to receive a settlement or judgment in a civil lawsuit. It may be possible to resolve your case earlier if you have gathered evidence of your injuries and your medical treatment. The more documents and records you collect beforehand, the more likely it is that you will be able to substantiate your legal claims.
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The Statute of Limitations in the State of Tennessee
The statute of limitations is a time limit on how long an injured victim has to bring their legal claims against a defendant. In the State of Tennessee, the statute of limitations for personal injury actions is one year from the date of the accident.
It is necessary to speak to a truck accident attorney to determine if exceptions may apply to your case that will allow you to file legal claims beyond the statute of limitations period. Sometimes an injured victim may not realize they suffered an injury until months after the date of an accident.
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Settlement Negotiations, Mediation, and Arbitration
The vast majority of all civil cases settle before trial. Only approximately five percent of all civil cases go to trial. Settlement negotiations are always possible in a civil case, and some cases will settle the day before the trial is scheduled to begin.
Mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution that is often necessary in civil lawsuits involving commercial truck accidents. Mediators are often former judges and attorneys who are trained to conduct mediation.
Arbitration is another form of alternative dispute resolution. Typically, a judge will order arbitration, and it can be either binding or non-binding.
An arbitrator has the authority to make a judgment and decide liability in a civil lawsuit. It is a good idea to speak to an experienced truck accident attorney about different forms of alternative dispute resolution.
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Oversized Truck Loads
Trailers need to be loaded in a specific manner so that the cargo is balanced on the trailer. A truck or trailer does not have to be overloaded to be unbalanced. Also, a truck driver will have problems navigating roadways if the cargo on the trailer or truck is not balanced.
Proper loading is essential to truck safety throughout the United States. Overloaded trucks are more likely to cause automobile accidents that result in serious bodily injury or death. The following are some of the common conditions that cause truck accidents:
- Excessive wind speeds
- Operating a truck on banked roads
- Making sharp turns with an overloaded truck
Truck accidents can occur in a matter of seconds. Oftentimes a truck driver is unable to stop an overloaded truck from tipping over. Unfortunately, victims in cars, sedans, and smaller trucks can die during these types of accidents.
Mechanical problems may also lead to truck accidents. The following are some of the most common mechanical issues associated with truck accidents:
- Steering column malfunction
- Worn suspension
- Faulty brakes
- Thin tires
- Loose tie downs
The cargo on a truck may fall off the truck during an accident. Mechanical issues can cause other drivers on the road to suffer serious bodily injury or death due to loose cargo scattered across the road.
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Federal Regulations and Overloaded Trucks
Federal regulations set a maximum weight of 80,000 pounds for trucks and trailers in the United States. Sometimes trucking companies acquire overweight permits to carry oversized loads across a state. These trucks may travel at slower rates of speed due to the potential dangers of overloaded trucks.
It is a complicated procedure to load a trailer or truck in a safe and organized manner. The shipper may be liable in an overloaded truck accident if the shipper was the party who overloaded the truck.
It is proper for truck drivers to check the trailer and truck before driving. However, it is possible that the driver could not determine if the truck was overloaded or loaded in an unsafe manner. A truck accident attorney may name the shipper as a defendant in a civil lawsuit.
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Founded in 1970, Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi PLC is one of the most recognized firms in Tennessee and Mississippi. We have decades of experience representing clients in truck accident cases. Our attorneys work with clients throughout the Memphis Tri-State Area.
Call now to reach our truck accident attorney in Memphis. We also have an office in Olive Branch, Mississippi. Don’t wait–contact us today!