New York Big Rig Accident Attorney
The trucking industry is an important part of the national economy, but that doesn’t mean the industry is without its risks. Big rigs, eighteen-wheelers, tractor-trailers, and other large commercial vehicles are massive behemoths that, when subjected to even the slightest mistake, can lead to a catastrophic accident. If a truck driver does not take their responsibility seriously, if the freight company that runs the truck tries to cut costs and encourage dangerous behavior, or if other parties involved act negligently or recklessly, everyone on the road is in danger of suffering serious injury or worse.
If you or a loved one has suffered a serious injury in an accident involving a big rig or other large truck, you and your family may be entitled to substantial compensation. The New York truck accident lawyer Leandros A. Vrionedes is ready to help you recover for your medical bills, your lost wages, your pain and suffering, and other damages you have suffered.
What Causes Big Rig Accidents?
Several different factors can lead to a big rig crash, and many accidents involve a combination of different things going wrong. Our New York commercial truck accident lawyer Leandros A. Vrionedes knows how to recreate the circumstances leading up to the semi crash in order to determine what cause, or causes, contributed to the accident.
Big rig accidents are often caused by truck driver mistakes, including negligent conduct such as:
- Drunk or intoxicated driving
- Drowsy or fatigued driving
- Distracted driving, especially texting while driving
- Speeding, passing, and other aggressive driving maneuvers
- Inexperienced or poorly trained truck drivers
In addition to driver error, several other causes can contribute to a big rig crash. Other parties may share the responsibility or be entirely to blame for the accident. Additional contributing factors to large truck crashes include:
- Defective trucks
- Negligently maintained trucks
- Drivers given insufficient safety training or operational training
- Poorly maintained roads or defectively designed roadways
- Unbalanced or unsecured loads
- Overloaded trucks
Who Is Liable After a Big Rig Crash?
If you’ve been hurt in a big rig accident, you need to make sure you’re holding the appropriate party responsible. Semis are often owned by a freight company manning a fleet of trucks and drivers. Those companies are responsible for the conduct of their drivers, as well as for their own negligence that may have contributed to the likelihood of a crash.
Depending upon whether the driver owns their truck or works for a freight company, as well as the other circumstances leading to the crash, any of the following parties may share responsibility for a big rig crash:
- The truck driver
- The trucking company
- The truck manufacturer
- A third party that loaded the truck improperly
- The government agency responsible for road design and maintenance
- Other negligent people on the road
Hours of Service Regulations
One of the biggest safety risks for commercial trucks is driver fatigue. Truckers face long, punishing hours on the road, often filled with monotony. Truck drivers might drift off, become distracted, or rely on stimulants and other substances to try to stay alert. To combat the risks of truck driver fatigue, the federal government enforces “hours of service” regulations.
Hours of service rules limit how many hours a trucker can operate in between appropriate rest breaks. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), truckers carrying property are generally subject to the following limitations:
- 11 hours max driving after 10 consecutive hours off-duty
- No driving after the 14th consecutive hour following 10 consecutive hours off duty, even accounting for off-duty time
- Mandatory 30-minute break for eight cumulative hours of driving
- No more than 60/70 hours on duty in 7/8 consecutive days of driving. A driver can restart the 7/8-day period by going off duty for 34 hours
Slightly different requirements apply when truckers are transporting passengers, and there are exceptions for inclement weather conditions and short hauls.
Despite these regulations, truckers often drive while fatigued. They are encouraged to complete hauls quickly, to get more work and earn more income for themselves and their company. Their employer might even encourage breaking the rules, or at least deliberately look the other way in order to generate more revenue.
If a trucker violates the hours-of-service regulations and they cause a catastrophic accident as a result, the driver, their employer, and other responsible parties must be taken to task for the harm they cause. Big rig accident attorney Leandros A. Vrionedes has spent years holding truck drivers, freight companies, truck manufacturers, and other parties liable for their negligent conduct and the devastation that results.
Call New York Truck Crash Attorney Leandros A. Vrionedes for Help After a Big Rig Accident
If you were seriously hurt in an accident involving a big rig, a semi-tractor, an eighteen-wheeler, or other large commercial vehicles, get help from a dedicated personal injury lawyer with decades of experience going toe-to-toe with negligent defendants, insurance companies, delivery companies, and other parties. Contact NYC big rig accident and personal injury lawyer Leandros A. Vrionedes for a free consultation on your injury case at 212-889-9362.