We have all experienced being on the highway near a commercial truck or 18-wheeler and wondered to yourself what you would do, or could do, if they drove towards your vehicle. Unfortunately, you may not be able to avoid a collision with these large vehicles, even if you do everything in your power to avoid them. To make matters worse, an 18-wheeler can weigh up to 25 times more than a typical car, making truck accident crashes especially serious and dangerous.
They are handled just like a regular car wreck case, right? NO!
Many people think that being involved in a wreck with an 18-wheeler or other type of commercial truck is handled the same way a car accident is. They are very, very different. Many trucking companies and/or their insurance companies have law firms (not insurance adjusters) who get involved in evaluating and defending the trucking company immediately. There are also many rules that tractor-trailer companies and their drivers must follow on the road in addition to the regular laws that everyday drivers have to follow. Our team at Eadon Law has an extensive understanding of trucking rules and regulations in South Carolina and North Carolina, and we use this information to make sure our clients get the complete compensation they deserve.
Additionally, unlike most typical motor vehicle collisions, multiple parties may be held liable in a truck accident. These parties include the trucking company, truck driver, truck manufacturer, vendors, cargo owners, road construction companies, government entities, and more. Our truck accident attorneys will help determine liability by interviewing witnesses, reviewing the truck driver’s background, looking at the company’s insurance information, inspecting the vehicles involved, preserving key evidence, hiring an expert to prove our case, reviewing medical records, and more.
Truck accident law is completely different than other areas of law, so it is extremely important to contact a lawyer who is an experienced truck accident attorney. Eadon Law has experience representing people across South Carolina and North Carolina who have been injured or have lost loved ones as a result of truck accidents involving tractor-trailers and 18-wheelers. We’ve unfortunately seen first-hand how scary and devastating these crashes can be. We are here to help you through your injuries, explain your options and fight to win.
ACT NOW - (803) 760-7444
It is very important to act quickly in the immediate aftermath of a tractor-trailer wreck to ensure that documents and other evidence are preserved and not destroyed by the truck driver or their company. Many important pieces of evidence such as driver logs, dispatch information, safety records, and electronic data from the truck itself are only available for a short period of time following a collision. An experienced trucking accident lawyer at Eadon Law can help you identify key parties and preserve this information for use in proving your case. If you wait too late, once this evidence is gone it is gone.
HELP, I’ve Been Involved in a Wreck!
The below report from the South Carolina Department of Public Safety, shows the number of tractor-trailer units involved in traffic collisions since 2013.
- 2013 – 3,576
- 2014 – 4,028
- 2015 – 4,666
- 2016 – 5,126
- 2017 – 5,292
- 2018 – 5,554
- 2019– 5,403
- 2020– 4,978
The below report from the North Carolina Department of Transportation, shows the number of commercial trucking units involved in traffic collisions since 2018.
|Single Unit (2-axle, 6 tire)||4,869||4,840||4,470||5,058|
|3+ axle, single-unit trucks||2,233||2,209||1,931||2,193|
|Unknown heavy trucks||331||325||305||287|
Truck drivers are required to complete special training and follow specific federal and state regulations while operating a tractor-trailer. The size of an 18-wheeler or tractor-trailer alone can make accidents much more dangerous for everyone involved. The large majority of those seriously injured or killed in collisions involving a tractor-trailer were occupants of passenger vehicles.
COMMON CAUSES OF TRUCK ACCIDENTS:
There are many causes of truck collisions, but the most common include:
- Following too closely
- Distracted driving
- Excessive speed
- Failure to follow trucking laws and regulations
- Failure to properly maintain brakes
- Disregarding construction zones
- Drowsy or over-time driving
- Loss of control
- Drunk driving
WHAT COMPENSATION AM I ENTITLED TO?
There are three main types of damages recoverable in truck accident cases in South Carolina: special, general, and punitive. Special damages are sometimes referred to as actual damages, including compensation for medical bills, future medical care, lost wages, and more. General damages focus on your pain and suffering, permanent injuries, and emotional distress. These damages are typically harder to determine and are more subjective than special damages. Lastly, punitive damages are used to discipline the trucking company and discourage bad conduct by sending a strong warning for their reckless, illegal, or willful behavior. North Carolina truck injury claims are generally limited to actual and general damages.
Recovering adequate compensation for damages without the help of an experienced truck accident lawyer with an extensive understanding of SC and NC truck accident laws and regulations can be difficult. Please take advantage of your free consultation with an experienced truck accident lawyer now for a free consultation by calling (803) 760-7444.
WHAT SHOULD I DO AFTER A TRUCK ACCIDENT?
- Seek medical attention. The health and safety of you and those around you come first.
- Call the authorities. Make sure someone calls 911 to report the accident to emergency personnel.
- Gather evidence. Take photos of the scene, witnesses, the vehicles involved, and the surrounding area if possible. Also, get the driver’s name, address, phone number, insurance information, license number, and the name and contact information of the truck driver’s employer.
- See a doctor. Seek medical attention as soon as possible following the collision even if you are not transported from the scene of the accident by EMS, as some symptoms may take a few hours/days to begin. Do NOT try and “tough it out” if you were involved in a trucking collision as the insurance company will use that against you.
- Beware of what you say. An insurance adjuster will call you after the accident and try to take a recorded statement. They will use anything you say to limit the amount of money you get. Speak to a truck accident lawyer before speaking with an insurance company to maximize your compensation.
WHEN SHOULD I CONTACT A TRUCK ACCIDENT LAWYER?
We recommend that you contact an experienced truck accident lawyer at Eadon Law immediately. Please call (803) 760-7444 to schedule a free consultation.