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Determining the causes of a truck accident

March 9, 2019

Victims of commercial truck accidents must deal with many pressing needs at the same time, and it can easily become overwhelming. On top of dealing with injuries suffered in the accident and possibly missing work and income because of the injuries, a victim must also build a personal injury claim to compensate them for their losses.

Building a personal injury claim in Kentucky is rarely simple, but when it involves a commercial truck, the process grows more complex. Instead of a legal conflict between two consumer drivers, the claim may involve one or more large companies, each of them eager to payout as little as possible or avoid liability altogether.

Pursuing fair compensation after a truck accident requires building a strong claim, and building a strong claim requires gathering as much evidence as one can from the scene of the accident as well as from the truck itself. If you or someone you love faces this monstrous task, be sure to use excellent legal resources and guidance as you need them, to keep your rights and priorities protected.

Is the driver responsible?

Professional drivers carry a great responsibility when they get behind the wheel of a large truck, to keep themselves and others safe on the road while they move their cargo. However, the work of a truck driver is not easy, and they often face unrealistic schedules that make it difficult to rest.

It is wise to ask the driver for the driver’s logs as soon as you can. These are logs that the driver must keep in the vehicle that detail when they stop to rest and how long they rest. This can help you put together a more complete picture of the accident’s cause.

Did a component malfunction?

Even a skilled, focused driver may not successfully avoid an accident if some component of the truck fails while on the road. It is typically not appropriate to blame the driver in a claim, but rather put the responsibility on the manufacturer or the party who most recently repaired or maintained that part or system. Identifying these issues is much simpler if you obtain the data from the truck’s electronic control module, which records data about the inner operation of the vehicle and the driver’s habits. Be sure to act quickly, because the owner of the truck may legally delete this data unless they receive a formal request for it.

Did poorly secured cargo shift in transit?

Another common cause of truck accidents is shifting cargo. Driving a large truck is difficult enough when a load is properly secured. If the load shifts while the truck is moving, it can easily create momentum that the driver cannot control. In this case, it is important to to determine who loaded the cargo. Often, the driver only transports the cargo, while a loading crew packs the cargo and secures it.

As you build a claim, you must carefully consider all these possibilities and look to the evidence for the most plausible cause. Begin building your claim today, so that you can focus on life’s other pressing needs sooner and keep your rights secure.