Truck Accident Lawyers in Jacksonville
Truck Accident Videos
Tractor-Trailer Accidents Info
All of us who drive down the highway have had a sinking feeling when we are near a semi-truck. The sheer size difference usually has us speeding up or trailing behind those big-rigs, some carrying a gross weight of 80 thousand pounds. Compare that to your car's weight of 3 to 4 thousand pounds.
Truck accidents truly present the largest danger on our highways today. If you are involved in a full speed crash with a semi-truck, it is equivalent to colliding with 20 cars - all at the same time. This is very serious and can have catastrophic consequences.
In the aftermath of serious large truck accidents and tractor-trailer accidents, the tractor trailer accident lawyers of Farah & Farah in Jacksonville are prepared to represent victims and help them receive the compensation they are owed. Due to the deadly nature of tractor-trailer accidents, the advice of an experienced attorney is invaluable to accident victims or surviving family members. Contact us today to speak with a member of our legal team.
- Truck Accidents - What You Should Know
- Large Truck Litigation
- Large Trucks and the Dangers of Driver Fatigue
- Truck Accident Statistics
- What to Do If You Have Been Involved in a Truck Accident
- How Will Farah & Farah Handle My Case?
To win a Florida truck accident case, you must understand the competitive forces within the trucking industry. Before deregulation, brought about by the Motor Carrier Vehicle Act of 1980, there were fewer than 20,000 interstate motor carriers operating in the United States. Within 20 years there were more than one-half million.
The increase in competition has been dramatic. Even well-run, safety conscious companies are being challenged by competitors willing to cut corners to obtain and keep business. A shrinking profit margin has decreased the quality of working conditions and many drivers have left the business and been replaced by poorly-qualified drivers.
At Farah & Farah, our truck accident lawyers in Jacksonville are committed to holding negligent truck drivers and trucking companies responsible for their actions. When companies cut corners and put your safety at risk, our firm is here to help.
Large truck accidents can be caused by everything from unsecured cargo to malfunctioning or defective equipment. In many cases, driver error or negligence is the root cause of the collision. If a truck driver is inexperienced or inadequately trained, is aggressive and careless on the road, is overly fatigued, or is driving under the influence, and an accident results, that driver (and the company they work for) may be held liable. The same is true with truck equipment, if a truck company fails to maintain its equipment or improperly secures a cargo load, they may be held liable under product liability law if that negligence results in a tractor trailer accident. In any case, the truck accident lawyers at Farah & Farah in Jacksonville can go after the responsible parties.
Many tractor trailer accidents involving large trucks are the result of driver fatigue. Lawsuits that arise from these crashes focus on whether the driver and carrier complied with regulations limiting the hours a driver can work. The dangers of driver fatigue have been known for decades; however, the industry continues to downplay its role in crashes.
In January, 2004, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration changed the rule to allow drivers to stay behind the wheel another hour. In 2005, the Truck Safety Agency announced that a revision to the rule would still allow drivers of semi-trucks to work for 14 hours a day, including 11 hours behind the wheel--three hours more than safety advocates say is safe.
"What reasonable person who has traveled our nation's roads and highways thinks that forcing tired truck drivers to stay behind the wheel even longer is good public policy?" asked Teamsters Union President, James Hoffa.
Driver Fatigue Linked to Truck Fatalities
Studies have shown that deaths resulting from large truck accidents rose 3.1 percent between 2003-2004. It is only logical to conclude this is a result of tired drivers staying on the road 20 percent longer and those that spend 30 percent more time on duty under the new rules.
A coalition of consumer groups headed by Public Citizen has filed a petition challenging the 2005 hours-of-service rule allowing drivers to stay behind the wheel for 11 hours a day and up to 84 hours in seven days and fails to require electronic on-board recorders, which can provide data on the number of hours truckers drive.
"Large trucks are rolling time bombs on our highways and we need to change the rules to make our highways safe," says Joan Claybrook president of Public Citizen.
Hours of Service Violations
Our Jacksonville trucking accident attorneys are experienced in handling truck and tractor-trailer accidents in Jacksonville and throughout Florida that involve hours of service violations. We are also familiar with federal regulations that apply to these types of crashes. Commercial carrier drivers and motor carriers are required to keep many documents that help us determine whether there has been an "hours of service" violation. For example:
1. DRIVER'S LOGS contain the date, total miles driven on that day.
2. ELECTRONIC ON-BOARD RECORDERS may have been used by the defendant instead of driver's log books.
3. QUALCOMM/COMDATA ELECTRONIC LOG SYSTEMS are usually equipped with global positioning systems or GPS technology showing where the truck has been.
4. ACCIDENT REPORTS which motor carriers must keep for at least a year can reveal a bad driver or negligent carrier.
5. BILLS OF LANDING show when and where the truck's load was picked up and dropped off.
6. GAS AND OIL RECEIPTS can indicate that the driver was not sleeping during his or her rest period or that the driver covered too much ground between different locations.
7. CELL PHONE RECORDS show when and where the driver was at the time of the call, depending on the location of the cell tower.
8. POST-CRASH DRUG AND ALCOHOL TESTS indicate whether the driver may have been under the influence prior to the crash.
Collision Warning Systems - VOB Radar
Consumers should breathe a little easier knowing that many semi-trucks in the United States are equipped with a state-of-the-art collision warning system, not unlike the "black box" used by the military or commercial aviation.
Vehicle-On-Board Radar warns the large truck driver of vehicles and objects in the immediate area of the truck. Audio tones alert the truck operator to smaller cars to his left, right or front. In addition, the system can provide accident reconstruction information data up to 10 minutes prior to the accident.
That data includes the tractor-trailer's turn rate, rate of speed, braking, and gear in use at the time of the accident. This data can be crucial to reconstructing tractor-trailer accidents and assisting our Jacksonville attorneys in making a case. One Florida-based trucking company, Comcar Industries of Auburndale, reports a 63 percent reduction in rear and right hand lane change accidents in its trucks equipped with the collision warning system over an 18-month period.
According to the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration), Florida has the third highest number of highway fatalities following California and Texas.
2004 National Large Truck Crash Statistics:
- 4,862 Fatal Large Truck Crashes
- 5,190 Fatalities
- 134,052 Non-fatal crashes
- 62,896 Injury crashes
- 91,406 Injuries
- U.S. Dept. of Transportation
Following both Florida auto accidents and truck accidents, the attorneys at our Jacksonville firm recommend that victims follow several critical steps to protect their legal rights. First and foremost, seek necessary medical attention, and as soon as possible, attempt to record the events of the accident and speak with an attorney. Unfortunately, the reality is that most police departments lack the time and expertise necessary to thoroughly investigate tractor-trailer accidents. An immediate investigation of the accident is necessary following a truck collision, and it is in everyone's best interest to document the scene and secure witnesses in order to reconstruct the accident later on.
The best way to ensure that the proper steps are taken after a collision is to speak with one of the truck accident lawyers from our Jacksonville firm. If possible, our truck accident lawyers should be consulted even before any statements are given or medical releases are signed, as this is the only way to ensure that your rights are fully protected after the accident.
Our Jacksonville truck accident lawyers will use our wealth of resources to immediately investigate your truck accident case. Farah & Farah also has a talented team of trained experts available to collect evidence at the scene of the accident, interview all relevant witnesses and actors involved in the case, and reconstruct truck accidents. Our Jacksonville firm has handled numerous truck accident cases and we are prepared to handle every aspect of your claim. You can be confident that the insurance companies representing the truck driver or truck company will thoroughly investigate the accident - our goal is simply to level the playing field by using all of our resources to protect your legal rights.
Truck accident litigation often involves multiple defendants and complex state and federal law. As part of our evaluation of your truck accident case, our Jacksonville attorneys will identify all parties to the lawsuit and handle all negotiations involving your claim. In many instances, we will be able to resolve your case through talks with insurance companies, but where necessary, we will aggressively advocate on your behalf in a court of law.
Contact Our Truck Accident Lawyers Today
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, the lawyers of Farah & Farah in Jacksonville are here to evaluate your case. Our investigators and accident reconstruction specialists will be immediately available to gather all the information necessary to properly present your claim. We are familiar with the federal regulations that are involved in tractor-trailer accidents, and our truck accident lawyers in Jacksonville and throughout Florida use all of our resources to make sure that trucking companies are held responsible for their actions.
Contact us today to find out if you may be eligible to receive compensation for injuries or property damage. Remember, following truck and tractor-trailer accidents, our Jacksonville firm is here to help.
Recent Truck Accident Verdicts and Settlements:
- $4.8 Million Recovery - Trucking Collision Case Resulting in Severe Back Injuries and Pain
- $3.4 Million Verdict - Truck Accident Case Resulting in Herniated Disc and Soft Tissue Damage
- $1.35 Million - Fatal Truck Accident Award
Our personal promise: Accident victims have specific rights, but by law you have a limited time to take action. When you use our team at Farah & Farah, there are NO up-front charges.
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Our fee is a percentage of the money awarded payable only when your case is successfully concluded. No matter how many times you call and how long we talk, there is NO CHARGE or cost until your case settles. Do not sign any releases, agreements or give any statements until you have spoken with us about your legal rights. When it comes to getting you more, we won't settle for less!
We personally promise that you will be treated with the respect and dignity you deserve. We promise to keep you up to date and informed as to developments in your case. Your case is important to us, regardless of size.
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