Identifying the Responsible Parties in Wyoming Truck Accidents
When you suffer serious injuries in a truck accident, the first step toward recovering compensation for your medical bills, lost wages and other damages is to identify the party (or parties) responsible for causing the accident. Truck accidents are similar to other accidents in that they can have numerous possible causes – and as a result, there may numerous parties to blame – but they also have some unique aspects that can give victims additional opportunities to seek just compensation.
Who Can I Sue for Truck Accident Injuries?
The Truck Driver
Truck drivers are generally the most obvious sources of compensation for those who have sustained injuries in accidents involving 18-wheelers, tractor trailers and other types of trucks. Like other drivers, truck drivers face numerous distractions and with big rigs, it doesn’t take much for a simple driving error to cause a major highway collision. Truck drivers are required to carry insurance and accident cases involving truck driver negligence are often resolved through insurance settlements and litigation with insurance companies.
The Trucking Company or Shipping Company
Under a rule known as “vicarious liability,” trucking companies can be held financially responsible for accidents caused by the truck drivers they employ. There are limits – for example, the truck driver generally must have been on-duty at the time of the accident – but claims against trucking companies often provide victims with an important additional source of compensation.
Accident victims may be able to hold trucking companies and shipping companies liable for their own negligence as well. For instance, if a trucking company hires untrained drivers or a shipping company loads a truck beyond its weight rating, these are situations where the companies may be directly responsible for causing an accident. The same may also be true if a trucking company fails to comply with federal trucking regulations.
Truck and Part Manufacturers
Sometimes, truck drivers lose control not because of poor driving or cargo issues, but because of problems with their vehicles. Defects affecting a truck’s steering, brakes, tires or other systems or components can lead to accidents in which the truck manufacturer may be to blame. Victims will often have similar claims against individual part manufacturers as well.
Maintenance and Repair Shops
What if a part is manufactured properly and isn’t inherently dangerous, yet it still leads to an accident? In these situations, it is possible that a maintenance or repair shop may have either damaged the part or installed it improperly. Faulty brake jobs and other negligent service work may give victims grounds to pursue compensation from maintenance and repair shops in addition to any other responsible parties.
Government Highway Agencies
In some cases, it is the road itself – not the truck or the truck driver – that is to blame. Inadequate road maintenance, insufficient lighting and dangerous road designs are all examples of issues that can give rise to claims against the government agencies responsible for highways and byways in the West and across the country.
Contact Our Wyoming Truck Accident Attorneys About Your Injuries Today
The attorneys at The Spence Law Firm have decades of experience representing truck accident victims in Wyoming and throughout the United States. We have successfully taken on some of the largest trucking companies in the country, and we have the experience and expertise you need to obtain maximum compensation. To learn more about enforcing your legal rights after a truck accident, please contact us today.