Some people know the story all too well; the story of traveling down the interstate at night and seeing lights from a tractor trailer swerve to your side of the road. You panic. Reasonably so. The car flips and flips and flips and you are rushed to the hospital after having incurred substantial injuries. Though you may have made it out alive, usa unfortunately, the expenses that come along with such injuries can be overwhelming. For those who sustain injuries from this form of an accident it is important to seek legal assistance at Khayoumi Law Firm to help you receive the best outcome possible for your case.
Statistics Regarding Tractor Trailer Accidents
Tractor trailer trucks are constantly on the road, and though they do well sharing the road with passenger vehicles, there are instances where accidents happen between the two. When these accidents occur, because a tractor trailer is 20-30 times bigger than a passenger vehicle, it is often time fatal or those involved are substantially injured as a result. Statistically, most deaths in large truck crashes are passenger vehicle occupants. In 2013, a total of 3,602 people died in large truck crashes. Of this total, 16 percent were truck occupants, 67 percent were occupants of cars and other passenger vehicles, and 15 percent were pedestrians, bicyclists, or motorcyclist and though there are many precautions that New Mexico as well as the federal government implement for tractor trailer drivers, death from large trucks were 14 percent higher in 2013 than in 2009.
Laws for Tractor Trailer Drivers
There are several reasons why these accidents occur: driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, distractions such as eating or cell phone usage, the timing difference to brake for large trucks, however, the leading cause for tractor trailer related accidents are due to fatigue of the driver. Because of this leading cause New Mexico and the federal government has “resting laws” for drivers of tractor trailers. Laws, both federally and in New Mexico, has an hours-of-service rule that mandate a 10 hour rest period on all tractor trailer drivers who have driven more than 11 hours total in a single 24 hour period or having been on duty for more than 14 hours in a single 24 hour period. Though these laws are mandatory, they are often time disregarded.
Tractor trailer accidents are different from other auto cases. When an accident occurs a plaintiff may sue the driver as well the driver’s employer for negligence. In an action for negligence the burden of proof is on the plaintiff. The plaintiff has to prove that the defendant owed a duty to them, that the defendant breached that duty, such as not abiding by the hours-of-service rules, that the defendant was the proximate cause and cause in fact to the injury, and that the defendant’s carelessness led to the plaintiff’s damages. If one can prove this then medical expenses, as well as lost income and loss of earning capacity, may be recovered.
Need Legal Advice?
Here at Khayoumi Law Firm, we understand the difficulty that follows an accident with large trucks and we use our expertise to help you seek a remedy that is comparable to the injuries you have sustained. If you or someone you love is injured in an accident with a large truck you may be entitled to compensation for the harm done to you. An experienced Albuquerque truck accident lawyer at Khayoumi Law Firm can assess your situation and advise you regarding your legal options. Contact our office now for a free initial consultation.