Determining Fault In A Commercial Truck Crash
Do you own or manage a truck? How do you determine the fault in case of an accident? If still not sure concerning this, then this article is for you.
Truck accidents are one of the liabilities in the transportation and trucking business, which always should be taken care of keenly.
Getting the person responsible for the accidents and acquiring valuable information about the accidents is very important, especially for insurance companies when it comes to compensation and claims.
How do you go about this? Whether you are a lawyer or representative of the truck company, you need to take the below precautions to make a more accurate decision.
Take a quick action
The way cargo trucks are handled is not the same way passenger or private cars are taken care of in case of an accident. This is because compensation is always different. Different parties get involved in this investigation, including the manufacturer of the vehicle, the truck’s owner, the transporting company, the driver, and other third parties.
The reason why quick action should be taken is because of the stakes involved. When a truck crashes, there are always damages, casualties, and probably loads of injuries to people or goods. All these need to be taken into consideration.
According to transport laws, all details should be noted before the truck, or anyone is moved from the accident scene. This should be done urgently to avoid more damage to goods or loss of life.
Conduct an investigation
How is this done? Experts take into consideration many details before coming up with a conclusion regarding the cause of an accident. A lawyer or someone given the mandate to carry out the investigation always understands the need for a comprehensive, timely, and proper investigation. Some of the things considered include items that were not initially in the truck at the time of purchase or manufacture.
What does this mean? For example, if goods involved in an 18 wheeler accident are not part of the authorized cargo, it brings a whole different case to the driver. The reason is because the insurance company may fail to compensate a truck driver carrying the illegal cargo. In this case, you need to find yourself a good lawyer who will negotiate on your behalf as the mistake might not be yours.
With the launch of modern trucks with “Black Boxes,” investigations have become more manageable since they record the significant occurrences before and during the accident. Black boxes may record the speed in which the truck was, during the accident, the faults, brakes, and the navigation process.
In most cases, a competent lawyer will consider driver accounts, witness accounts, other road users, and the state of the vehicle, insurance covers, fitness, and skills of the driver, before coming up with a conclusion. Sometimes, a truck might be having defaults and other issues, which might be the cause of the accident.
Checking who is a fault at the accident scene
When investigating a truck crash, there are many things you need to take into consideration. Some of the leading causes of road accidents include overspeeding, lousy terrain, carelessness driving, driving under the influence, and distracted driving.
How do you get to know the cause of the accident? Through a thorough investigation, as explained above. Who is liable for a disaster? An accident can be caused by one or a combination of parties. The main people responsible in case of an accident include:
- The truck driver – since he is the one who drives and takes care of the vehicle.
- The truck company – cases concerning the company include servicing, load, insurance, and the overall maintenance of the vehicle.
- The truck manufacturer – are there any defects or shortcomings with the vehicle? Were the parts appropriately fixed? Was there approval of the car? Is it up to standard? These are some of the questions asked to the manufacturer.
- The manufacturer of the parts comes in between if the vehicle is refurbished and new parts are included.
- The company that owns and loads the cargo to the truck.
- The servicing and maintenance company involved in the wellbeing of the vehicle.
In case you are unable to determine the cause of the accident, look for expertise. Sometimes, you may incur huge losses when blame shifts due to shoddy work done by investigators.
Getting the right person to represent you will ensure you understand in detail how truck insurance works, and also give you a chance to get compensated for the losses and damages got during the accident.