Have You Been Injured in a Truck Accident?
When a truck crash happens, of course your first concern is for the well-being of those involved, but this is just the start of proceedings—you will have a lot to worry about afterward, too. A commercial truck accident is complex, and you have many legal rights and responsibilities. This is where an experienced truck accident attorney like Stewart Guss can help—we can guide you to make the best decisions and make sure that you get every penny of compensation to which the law entitles you.
National Trucking Accident Attorney Stewart J. Guss discusses trucking safety on national news with Mike Papantonio on America’s Lawyer
Trucking companies are slick and have plenty of tricks to make your recovery hard or impossible, especially on your own. Stewart Guss, however, has 20 years of experience fighting with these trucking companies and their insurance adjusters on behalf of victims of truck accidents to get full and fair compensation for all of their damages.
A situation like this can have a major impact on your welfare, and many things can contribute to amount of compensation your claim may pay you. We will go over this when we speak with you, but for example:
- Are there injuries or fatalities?
- How bad is the property damage?
- Were the police involved?
- Are there medical and insurance costs to pay?
- Who had which legal rights and responsibilities?
- What factors can influence the amount of your settlement?
Why Choose Our Team?
Traffic accidents can be complex, especially when commercial trucks are involved. These situations can be upsetting, complicated, and stressful. How are you going to get your car fixed? Who is going to pay for your medical bills? What are your rights? Is the insurance company treating you fairly?
To help with these and other issues, you need a compassionate, honest, and experienced truck accident lawyer. Attorney Stewart J. Guss will listen to you, keep you informed, and make this whole claim process as worry-free as possible. Stewart Guss will take care of all the legal issues so that you can concentrate on what is most important: the health, welfare, and recovery of yourself and your loved ones injured in the accident.
- Stewart Guss and his team believe in respect, integrity, and family values.
- Our attorneys and staff will always be there for you.
- With decades of combined experience, Stewart and his team will work tirelessly to recover as much as possible on your truck accident claim.
- And you don’t pay us anything unless we win your case!
They Will Try to Deny Your Claim!
Dealing with trucking insurance companies can be a nightmare. Sometimes it seems like they think their jobs are to DENY your accident claim—NOT TO PAY! You need a strong yet approachable advocate on your side. Call us now for a free consultation, and decide for yourself if you think we can help. Remember, do not talk to the trucking or insurance company and do not sign anything until you speak with us, because you risk losing some or all of the compensation to which you are entitled.
Stewart Guss and his team will do everything possible to obtain the best possible recovery on your claim, and we take pride in treating our clients like family. Pick up the phone and call (281) 664-6500 to talk to us about your truck accident. Remember, your consultation is FREE, and you pay NOTHING unless we win your case!
Commercial Truck Accident Statistics
Accidents involving large trucks happen every day across the United States. Many people may not realize just how common these collisions are, and the following statistics, reported by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), may surprise them:
- About 111,000 individuals were injured in truck accidents in 2014.
- More than 3,900 persons died from truck accident injuries in 2014.
- That same year, police received reports of about 438,000 truck accidents.
- Nearly three-fourths of the injured persons were riding in other passenger vehicles.
- Truck drivers or passengers suffered 23 percent of injuries.
- Three percent of injured victims were not in vehicles and were instead riding bicycles or walking.
- More than 10,905,000 commercial trucks were registered in the United States in 2014.
- More than 80 percent of crashes involved multiple vehicles.
- A head-on collision with a truck collision has the greatest incidence of death.
- Many truck drivers have past crashes, convictions for speeding, convictions for DUI, or license suspensions.
Safety Tips for Driving Near Large Trucks
While truck accident victims do have rights to recover financially after a crash, it is always safer and preferred to avoid collisions in the first place whenever possible. While you cannot control the actions of a truck driver or trucking company, you can make sure that you take every necessary precaution when you approach or pass a large commercial truck. Some safety tips to remember:
- Heavy trucks take longer to stop, so do not pull in front of a truck or suddenly brake when you are in front of a truck.
- Trucks have “no zones”—substantial blind spots on the sides, front, and back of the truck. Know where they are and avoid lingering in no zones when possible.
- If you see a semi-truck swerving or any other signs of a truck driver’s intoxication, stay away from the truck and call law enforcement authorities.
- Never look down at a phone or engage in other distractions when you are near a big truck. (Actually, avoid distracted driving at all times).
Commercial truck drivers and trucking companies must comply with many different regulations and laws both on the federal and state levels. When they violate these laws, they can often cause serious collisions and injuries to motorists. Anyone who violates any safety laws and causes injuries should be held fully accountable for their actions.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Regulations
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) enacts and enforces a wide variety of regulations that apply to all commercial vehicles operating on an interstate basis in the United States. This can include semi-trucks, hazardous materials (hazmat) trucks, tanker trucks, flatbeds trucks, buses, and more. The regulations set standards of behavior for many aspects of trucking, including:
- Licensing – Everyone who operates a commercial truck must have the proper commercial driver’s license and training for that particular type of vehicle.
- Health conditions – Medical professionals must approve drivers, who cannot have have any potentially dangerous medical conditions that may interfere with the ability to operate their trucks.
- Hours of service – To prevent fatigued driving, truckers must follow strict rules about how many consecutive hours and consecutive days they can work without taking breaks to rest and sleep.
- Intoxicated driving – Commercial drivers face stricter intoxicated driving laws than regular drivers, with a legal limit of 0.04 percent blood alcohol content (BAC)—compared to 0.08 percent for everyone else. They are also subject to random and post-accident drug and alcohol tests.
- Distracted driving – Commercial drivers who engage in text-based messaging or reading on a smartphone while driving violate the law. They also must follow strict rules regarding largely hands-free communications.
- Inspections – The driver must inspect a truck pre-shift, and a company must inspect and maintain the trucks in its fleet.
- Size and weight – There are weight limits depending on the size and number of axles of a commercial truck, with the maximum weight at 80,000 pounds. Trucks must be regularly weighed to ensure compliance.
Texas State Traffic Laws
In addition to FMCSA regulations, truck drivers must follow all state and local traffic laws when driving through Texas. These same laws apply to every other driver, and they prevent speeding, following too closely, reckless driving, improper passing, violating traffic signals, and much more.
Texas State Criminal Laws
Texas can also apply criminal laws to driving a commercial truck. These can prohibit driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, road rage, vehicular manslaughter, and other highly dangerous behaviors.
In addition to federal and local law enforcement agencies, the Texas Department of Public Safety also has a Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Service charged with the enforcement of nearly all laws that apply to commercial trucks driving through Texas.
Proving Your Truck Accident Claim
Even if you are sure that your accident occurred because of a dangerous truck driver, your word is not enough to hold a driver or trucking company legally liable. Instead, you must present evidence that a party was negligent and caused the crash and your injuries. Evidence that can prove a claim can differ significantly from case to case.
To identify and gather evidence in your truck accident case, and to determine the cause of the crash, you will need an investigation. This can include:
- Reviewing police reports
- Reviewing log books and delivery receipts
- Obtaining documents and records from the trucking company
- Analyzing data from the truck’s “black box”
- Obtaining any video footage of the crash, whether from a truck’s dashboard cameras or external cameras
- Interviewing witnesses
- Obtaining any arrest, charging, or conviction records if a driver is accused of a crime
- Using accident reconstruction experts
All of these investigative tasks can be challenging and time-consuming—especially since a trucking company will likely be less than cooperative in providing records and other requested evidence. At the law office of Stewart Guss, however, we have the resources to conduct a thorough investigation to build as strong of a case as possible in support of your claim.
Truck Accidents Can Cause Extensive Losses
One reason you need to prove liability in your truck accident case is that these crashes can result in devastating losses for victims. Because commercial vehicles can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds, they can cause extreme damage and injuries when they collide into smaller passenger vehicles.
Examples of the losses truck accident victims commonly incur include:
Medical bills – Severe injuries can require extensive treatments. Some truck accident victims may require emergency transportation, emergency trauma care, surgeries, hospitalization, time in the intensive care unit, rehabilitative therapies, follow-up visits, medical equipment, medications, home health assistance, and more. Due to high healthcare costs, even minor injuries can result in thousands of dollars in medical bills.
Lost income – After a truck accident, many people experience some type of disruption in their work schedules. You may miss work to receive the treatment you need—especially if you are hospitalized or have to recover from surgery. Even missing work due to a doctor’s appointment can result in lost wages for that period of time. In addition, an injury may completely prevent you from performing your job, so you have to take time off until you have sufficiently recovered.
Intangible losses – Truck accident injuries can result in physical and mental pain and suffering that can greatly damage your life. Furthermore, some catastrophic injuries can result in permanent impairments, disfigurement, or disabilities that can destroy the quality of the rest of your life. Victims deserve compensation for intangible losses as well as measurable monetary losses.
Future losses – At the time of your truck accident claim, your medical treatment may still be ongoing or you may have not yet returned to work. A qualified truck accident lawyer will know how to calculate all future losses in addition to losses already incurred.
The truck accident lawyers at Stewart J. Guss, Attorney at Law understand how to most effectively represent truck accident victims so that they can recover the full amount of compensation possible in their claims. If you have been injured in a truck accident, it is important to speak to a Houston personal injury lawyer as soon as you can.To schedule a free case evaluation with the attorneys of Stewart J. Guss, Attorney at Law, call today at (281) 664-6500 or send us an email through our online contact form. Remember—you pay us nothing up front when we take your case, and you pay us nothing unless and until we’ve won your recovery.
Don’t take chances—let us help you!
See what other clients are saying:
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
“I was very pleased with how Stewart handled my case. He acted professionally at all times and really had my best interests at heart. I was pleasantly surprised by the outcome too! I would definitely recommend my friends and family to use him as their lawyer.”