Accidents involving a big truck can be catastrophic, especially when the truck is a multi-ton semi-truck or tractor-trailer operating recklessly on Colorado highways and roadways. In truck accidents, physical injuries are much more severe than other motor vehicle accidents and can often result in hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical treatment and injury care. In addition, the loss of personal property and lost wages can reach into the hundreds of thousands of dollars often depending on the damage to your vehicle and how long your injuries put you out of work or the inability to even permanently return to work based on your job or profession.
Passenger vehicles that collide with big rigs are often total losses, and in collisions involving a large truck, most of the fatalities that occurred were occupants of another, smaller consumer sedan, SUV or compact vehicle. But it doesn’t have to end there because you have rights in these cases and an opportunity to hire an effective trucking accident attorney to tell your story and demand fair compensation from the insurance company, trucking company or defendant driver who injured you. By hiring a Denver truck accident attorney, like Reeves D. Whalen or Graham D. Hersh, you can hold these companies reasonably and fairly responsible for thousands of dollars for any injuries, damages and losses that may have resulted from a truck accident.
What is Considered as a Truck Accident?
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) nationwide census, General Emergency Services, and the Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS), serious consequences can occur from any cases involving any commercial or non-commercial vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) greater than 10,000 pounds.
The MCMIS states that any vehicle carrying hazardous materials requiring placarding is also considered to be a large truck, regardless of weight. Such cases reasonably require a truck accident lawyer in the case of an accident. Buses and motor homes are not generally accepted as trucks. An example list of vehicles that are defined as a large truck is listed below:
- Single-Unit Trucks (straight trucks)
- Combination Trucks (tractor-trailers)
- Tow Trucks
- Tanker Trucks
- Intermodal Containers
- Dump Trucks
- Garbage Trucks
- Flatbed Trucks
- Enclosed Box Trucks
- Passenger Carriers
- HM Carrier
- Freight Forwarders
When do You Need a Denver Truck Accident Attorney?
Auto accidents involving semi-trucks or similarly sized commercial vehicles present a far greater risk of serious injury or death than an accident involving two passenger automobiles. According to a census taken and provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, nearly 10 percent of all the fatal crashes in Colorado were attributed to large trucks in 2018. If you or a loved one was involved in an accident with a large truck or commercial vehicle, contacting a Denver truck accident attorney is the right decision if you suspect the collision was caused by any of the following reasons:
Reckless and careless driving: violations of traffic rules – such as disobeying traffic lights, driving over the speed limit, or passing lanes without proper signaling – can easily lead to accidents with large trucks requiring a truck accident lawyer to resolve.
Department of transportation violations: Operating a commercial motor vehicle requires a commercial driver’s license (CDL). There are three different classes of CDLs (A, B, and C) and different licenses and training are required for different vehicles. Operating a class B vehicle with a class A license is dangerous and can lead poor decision making and collisions with other vehicles on the road, which a Denver truck accident attorney can resolve for you in an injury case.
Driver inattentiveness and fatigue: Truck drivers are required to rest for at least 30 minutes and not exceed a driving period beyond 8 hours, as stated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and upheld and enforced in cases by truck accident lawyers. Even so, these are long hours of driving with heavy expectations to make deliveries on time by their employers, leading to accidents caused by heavy fatigue that the company and trucking industry culture may be responsible for in truck accident injury claims.
Longer Stopping Distances: A large truck weighing over five tons takes a considerably long time to make a stop. Without proper experience and attentiveness from the truck driver, this often causes rear-end collisions. In some instances, truckers engage in “drafting” driving techniques where they drive too close to other commercial vehicles to save money on gas and to maintain excessive unsafe speeds that endanger other motorists on the highway.
Construction traffic: Our Denver truck accident attorneys can help with accidents caused by construction traffic. Large trucks are already difficult to maneuver, and lane closures or detours can cause further difficulty in their maneuverability as drivers are forced to pass through restricted or unfamiliar roads – if truckers aren’t paying attention, then they can unreasonably delay lane changes and they can create driving emergencies on the highway that endanger and injure other drivers and Colorado motorists.
Poor weather and road conditions: Just as with any vehicle on the road, a truck driver must be mindful of road conditions and change their driving behavior accordingly. Especially in a state like Colorado, where icy road conditions are common in the winter and spring seasons. If a truck driver is not using chains on their tires or stopping in severe weather conditions, their decisions could lead to the risk of collisions and injuries, which can be pursued by a Denver truck accident attorney in your personal injury case.
Improper cargo load: Our Denver truck accident attorneys know that when a cargo load is above the weight limit of the truck, then system failure becomes more likely. If steering fails or tires burst while on the highway, unavoidable accidents can occur leading to injury or death where you need a Denver truck accident attorney in your personal injury case.
Vehicle defects: Equipment or mechanical failures can have as much to do with crashes as unsafe driving behaviors. If a turn signal is broken on a truck and vehicles around it are not aware of the driver’s intentions, the situation can lead to a truck accident which could cause serious injury. Often times, trucks that are inadequately or improperly maintenance can serve as a hazard on the roadway leading to serious injury or death in a trucking accident that requires the assistance of a Denver truck accident attorney in your personal injury case.
What Should You Look for in a Denver Truck Accident Attorney?
If you find yourself involved in an accident with a truck in the Denver area, you need trustworthy, dependable legal advice from an experienced Denver truck accident attorney. Whalen Hersh LLP has a team of dedicated Denver truck accident attorneys who are recognized leaders in Colorado Personal Injury Law. Our compassionate attorneys understand what people involved in accidents with large trucks go through in their injury cases, the injuries that are often suffered and sometimes even undiagnosed, the lost wages resulting from the crash, and other losses involved with injuries sustained in a truck accident that could impact your ability to work in the future. We’re available to assist you during your time of need to make sure that you are treated fairly, people and companies are held accountable, and you get justice in your personal injury case.
Denver Truck Accident Statistics
The trucking and shipping industry is indispensable to the Colorado (and national) economy. Approximately one in every 10 jobs in the state are related to the trucking industry and they pay billions of dollars in wages to Colorado residents each year. However, our active commercial trucking industry demands a heavy price on our community where Coloradoans are injured in trucking accident. Tractor-trailers are involved in many of our most devasting motor vehicle accidents leading to the need for Denver truck accident attorneys to help you in your case.
Fatal crash statistics in Colorado involving large trucks have nearly doubled over the course of the last decade alone. This uptick mirrors a nationwide trend, again provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Our truck accident lawyers have kept watch over this steep rise in fatal crashes and noted how they are occurring during a time when federal and state agencies have begun implementing a highly sophisticated system to monitor mechanical and safety violations generated by trucking companies nationwide. With Colorado being one of the earliest participants, we would expect to see accidents decrease with stricter guidance against driving violations but that doesn’t always happen.
One possible explanation for the increase in large truck accidents leading to fatalities in Colorado is the sometimes-inherent difficulty of driving on our beautiful mountain roads – this requires experienced truckers to drive observantly and attentively while recognizing the risk their big-rig may have on the safety of other motorists. Truck drivers in Colorado must have experience with specific slowing techniques when traveling downgrade or else risk overheating their brakes and ultimately losing control of their acceleration and vehicle. With the addition of circumstances involving snow and ice commonly seen at high altitudes or during the winter seasons and operating a large truck in Colorado can become a dangerous activity for inexperienced and careless truck drivers, with devastating consequences. When this leads to injury of death from a truck accident, you need an experienced truck accident lawyer from our firm to handle your case.
Much like with other motor vehicle accidents, truck accidents usually begin with an insurance claim. With motor vehicle insurers, especially in regard to insurers of large truck companies, they will work to limit their liability as much as possible. That’s why you need a knowledgeable Denver truck accident attorney in your corner to help navigate these insurance waters, many of which can be incredibly daunting.
Our Colorado personal injury firm exclusively represents clients against insurance companies and corporations in all personal injury matters. Our Denver truck accident attorneys aren’t afraid to take on these large companies and corporations on your behalf, and we have a history of winning large judgments, verdicts and settlements for our clients that is undeniable. We are accomplished Colorado trial attorneys with result driven success in Personal Injury Law. We have represented hundreds of clients and have obtained millions of dollars in settlements.
When you need a knowledgeable, trusted Denver truck accident lawyer who will fight for your rights, Whalen Hersh LLP has the attorneys you need who offer a different approach to personal injury representation. Our lawyers establish direct, meaningful, trusted and reliable relationships with you, our clients. We work closely with you to ensure that you get the medical treatment you need, the support you deserve, and the representation your families depend on in your personal injury case.
Contact Whalen Hersh LLP
The foregoing information is provided courtesy of Whalen Hersh LLP, Personal Injury Lawyers – a Denver truck accident attorney law firm and Colorado personal injury law firm that has obtained out-of-court settlements and large jury verdicts on the behalf of wrongfully injured individuals. Our truck accident lawyers proudly represent victims involved in not only truck accidents but also motorcycle accidents, car accidents, pedestrian accidents, and bicycle accidents, as well as cases relating to wrongful death, defective products, dog bites, and more.
When you need an experienced, passionate, qualified Denver truck accident attorney with a proven track record of success who will fight to get you what you deserve, contact us today. You can reach us at (720) 307-2666 to speak with a Denver truck accident attorney and learn more.