When a truck driver is involved in a truck crash and someone suffers an injury, there is a question as to whether the motor carrier is responsible for the actions of the truck driver, even if the driver is not direct employee but is an independent contractor. In this article, we examine the “statutory employment doctrine.”
Off-tracking is a term used to describe what happens with large trucks, or any vehicle with more than one set of wheels when the rear wheels don’t follow the same path as the front wheels while moving through a turn or a curve. Instead, the rear wheels will follow the shorter of the two paths, instead of tracking behind the path of the front wheels.
What should you do if you suffer an injury from negligent cargo securement.
Many motor carriers believe that a if a truck driver has a valid commercial drivers license and can pass the other hiring requirements (like having a valid medical certificate), there is nothing else the company must do to train the driver before allowing the driver behind the wheel of an 80,000 pound machine that can inflict massive damage in a truck crash when mishandled.
After a person has been involved in a truck accident, they often have questions and concerns about what the future holds for them and may ask themselves “what should I do if I my symptoms don’t improve?” People may report feeling okay in the moments immediately after a truck crash when the body releases chemicals like adrenaline or endorphins which can mask pain, or, the pain can develop over time. Sometimes it may take several days or even months for symptoms fully to develop.
The focus of this article is on understanding and proving the actual underlying cause of left-hand turn accidents, which usually stem from multiple failures and omissions by the carrier and professional driver. This understanding involves whether the defendant trucking company has adequate policies addressing the appropriate countermeasures to prevent left-hand turn accidents and if they are appropriately communicated to the drivers. The driver understanding should also be verified through objective measures.
Although mandatory ELDs undoubtedly will have a profound effect on prevention of fatigued driving, they are far from the perfect solution. In order to adequately address outstanding issues, the FMCSA and motor carriers should strongly consider implementing driver pay structures that compensate drivers for idle time and not simply pay drivers for miles. The old adage, “if the wheels ain’t turning, you ain’t earning” still applies and ELDs accomplish nothing to change this.
Recent contacts with truck and bus operators indicate that some, particularly smaller operators, are mistakenly assuming that if a driver possesses a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL), he or she is trained and experienced commercial vehicle driver. This it not true and can be a very dangerous mistake.
The National Board of Trial Advocacy (NBTA) is pleased to announce that Matthew Wright of the law firm, Wright Law PLC has successfully achieved Board Certification as a truck accident law advocate. The NBTA was formed out of a strong conviction that both the law profession and its clients would benefit from an organization designed specifically to create an objective set of standards illustrating an attorney’s experience and expertise in the practice of trial law.
Below is a checklist that we use at Wright Law PLC in truck accident cases to help maximize recoveries and ensure that clients receive just compensation for what has been taken from them: