Who Is at Fault for My Truck Accident in Texas?
Truck accidents occur on busy Texas roads and highways more often than many people realize. Nearly every day someone is injured in a truck accident while driving to work, school, or something else. Unlike car accidents, truck crashes are more complex in nature because they often have the potential for multiple involved parties.
It’s not at all unusual for our clients to ask us the question, “Who is at fault for my truck accident in Texas?”
About Trucking Regulations
Federal guidelines have been created by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to closely regulate the trucking industry. These rules impose strict requirements for truck drivers, trucking companies, and truck manufacturers.
To keep motorists safe, these regulations mandate comprehensive commercial drivers license requirements and regulate the number of hours a trucker can drive consecutively. Sadly, accidents caused by overtired and overworked truck drivers still happen on a regular basis.
Determining Liability for Truck Crashes
One of the most complex issues surrounding your 18-wheeler crash will be determining which parties are at fault. Multiple entities may have played a role in your wreck, including all of the following:
- Truck Driver – If the driver was distracted, speeding, falling asleep at the wheel, or under the influence of drugs or alcohol, then he or she can be held liable.
- Trucking Company – If the trucker was working for a trucking company at the time of the accident, that company could be partially responsible for your injury. Determining how the trucking company contributed to the accident is a part of the investigative process.
- Third-Party Drivers – A third driver may have contributed to the truck accident by causing the truck to crash.
- Maintenance Contractors – If a maintenance company is not properly conducting maintenance checks and servicing and fixing the truck, then the maintenance company or contractor could be at fault.
- Truck Manufacturers – Semi-truck makers can be liable for a truck accident if the truck either was not built correctly or was made with defective or faulty parts.
- Truck Part Manufacturers – If defective parts, such as faulty brakes or defective tires are discovered to be the cause of your accident, then the manufacturer of the parts is liable.
- Government – Maintaining roads and highways in Texas is the responsibility of state and local governments. They may be held negligent if your accident was caused by defective or poorly maintained roads, such as large potholes or poorly designed shoulder drop-offs.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
Every truck accident is the result of different circumstances. The most common causes of trucking accidents include driver fatigue, driver error, distracted driving, truck equipment failure, improper loading, and an inexperienced truck driver.
Inclement weather conditions also have a major impact on the safety of large trucks on roads. Because of their large size and weight, braking distance is often limited in bad weather as big trucks cannot stop as quickly or maneuver as easily as passenger cars. Federal safety regulations require truck drivers to take extra precautions, and if necessary, exit the road under hazardous weather conditions.
Speak with an Austin Truck Accident Lawyer to Protect Your Rights
The Austin truck accident lawyers at Colley & Colley, LLP have extensive experience successfully litigating complex truck accident cases. We work hard to achieve the best possible outcome and get you the compensation you deserve.
Call today at 512-477-2001 for a free, no-obligation evaluation. For your convenience, you can also fill out the online form at the bottom of this page and someone from our office will reach out to you.