Commercial Truck Accident Lawyer in Tampa, FL
Our law firm knows how to build a winning case
As the popularity of online shopping and same-day delivery service grows, so too does the number of commercial vehicles on the road - and the chance for serious truck accidents.
Even before the surge in delivery demand, Florida was already known for having some of the most car and truck accident-filled roads in the U.S.
Armando Personal Injury Law has represented many clients who were seriously hurt on one of the most dangerous roadways in the nation - I-4.
You’ve probably seen the aftermath of these violent wrecks across Hillsborough County; maybe it was a tractor-trailer that rolled over on I-75, a wide-turn crash with a delivery van on State Road 674, or a head-on collision with a semi-truck on I-295.
Pursuing a claim after an accident with a commercial vehicle
Victims hit by a commercial vehicle face an uphill battle when it comes time to file a claim or lawsuit against those responsible for their injuries. In most cases, the truck driver and shipping company involved in the crash are going to fight hard and try to blame you for what happened.
Most big trucking and shipping companies have high limit insurance policies and can lose a lot of money in the event of a serious crash that results in a lawsuit. That means the stakes are high for them, and you can bet they will do everything in their power to avoid liability.
Moreover, any blemish on a trucker’s driving record could cost them their career and livelihood. Without a doubt, they’re going to do all they can to avoid responsibility for the injuries they caused.
As such, if you were the victim of a commercial vehicle accident, you should look for an attorney who is not afraid to fight back and aggressively advocate for your best interests.
At Armando Personal Injury Law, we have helped many of our Tampa and Hillsborough County neighbors get the compensation they need and deserve following a serious crash. Talk to a commercial truck accident attorney at our firm today.
What counts as a commercial vehicle?
Just about any kind of car or truck can be a commercial vehicle if it is used for business purposes.
For instance, a small van used to deliver packages from an online retailer is considered a commercial vehicle, as is a fully loaded tractor-trailer hauling goods across the country.
Other common commercial vehicles include box trucks, vans, buses, delivery trucks, and taxis.
Commercial trucks are often much bigger than passenger vehicles - a fully loaded 18-wheeler can weigh up to 80,000 lbs. Due to the heavy weight and long length of most commercial vehicles, accidents can result in extra destruction.
Who can be at fault in a commercial vehicle accident?
There are often a lot more companies involved in a commercial vehicle accident compared to those involving just passenger vehicles.
Along with the driver of the vehicle, other parties that may be held liable for damages include:
- The shipping company
- The cargo owner
- Cargo loaders
- The truck maintenance company
- The vehicle’s parts manufacturer
- A separate third party (e.g., another driver involved in the crash)
How do commercial vehicle accidents happen?
There are many reasons why an accident with a commercial vehicle could happen, but most can be traced back to negligence on the part of the driver or their employer.
Common reasons why commercial vehicle accidents happen include:
- Distracted driving
- Texting while driving
- Use of a cell phone while operating a commercial vehicle is illegal.
- Fatigued driving
- Truckers may fall asleep at the wheel because of drug or alcohol use, medical conditions such as sleep apnea, or simply because they work long hours. The risk increases when they ignore mandatory rest breaks.
- Aggressive driving
- Unbalanced or uneven cargo loads
- The overall weight limit for a commercial truck is 80,000 pounds.
- Cargo securement should be properly checked so that no load falls or shifts from the truck.
- Poor vehicle maintenance
- Defective vehicle parts
- Poor hiring practices by the employer
- Inexperienced or unqualified drivers
- Use of drugs and alcohol
- Before starting employment, all potential drivers must take a drug and alcohol test. If there was an accident resulting in a fatality, the commercial driver will be required to take a drug and alcohol test.
Another key cause is violation of regulations intended to make trucks more visible. The Department of Transportation (USDOT) requires all commercial trucks to have retro-reflective tape around the vehicle. The back and bottom sides of the truck need to use red and white striped tape and the upper rear needs to use silver or grey. The tape must be on the entire lower rear bar and the entire bottom of the back of the vehicle, and cover at least 50 percent of the total side length of the commercial vehicle.
Going too fast around a bend or curve could cause a tractor-trailer to roll over. A quick stop due to a roadway hazard could cause an 18-wheeler to jackknife. While many passenger vehicles can stop on a dime, big rigs cannot. A tractor-trailer going 60 mph on the highway needs a couple hundred feet or more to come to a stop, meaning the driver needs to be alert at all times to avoid a serious crash.
Keep in mind that employers often pressure drivers into meeting unrealistic deadlines, which in turn can place added pressure on the driver and cause them to throw safety out the window.
Still, commercial vehicle drivers are trained professionals who are held to a higher standard and need to be held accountable when their negligence results in serious or fatal injuries to others.
Level the playing field with Armando Personal Injury Law
If you or a loved one was injured in an accident with a commercial vehicle, you have rights. At Armando Personal Injury Law, we understand how difficult it is to recover from a bad accident – let alone take on a trucking company or its insurer and their team of lawyers at the same time. You shouldn’t have to go through a commercial vehicle accident lawsuit alone.
What you do in the aftermath of a commercial truck accident is crucial to recovering compensation that will cover all your current and future accident-related medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, and offset temporary or lifelong diminished earning potential. There is no average settlement for a commercial vehicle accident; it all depends on the details of your case. The extent of your injuries, treatments, damages, and length of your case all come into play when determining compensation.
Much like how the accident changed your life in an instant, so too can an unskilled handling of your claim. Forget to file a document, give a “yes” or “no” to an insurance adjuster at the wrong time, or miss a piece of evidence, and you could sabotage your entire claim and lose out on the compensation you’re entitled to.
Attorney Armando Edmiston knows how to build a strong, airtight case that will hold those responsible for your injuries accountable for their actions. To see how we can help you with your potential legal case, contact us today for a free consultation.