Alabama Commercial Truck AccidentsEvery time we see someone hurt or killed by a big truck,we should be reminded that 110,000 people a year are injured or killed by a commercial vehicle. Every 16 minutes someone is killed or seriously injured by a tractor trailer truck. Every day somewhere in the United States a wheel comes off an 18 wheeler semi truck and those truck wheels at 50 or 60 mph can do tremendous damage.
We all need to be reminded that every 18 wheeler truck has a commercial policy of insurance with a million dollar limit and a team of truck crash experts who the trucking company will usually have at the truck crash site within an hour. Truck wreck evidence is hidden,evidence is obtained,accident witnesses are interviewed and local police officers are put into face to face conversations with expert vehicle truck accident reconstructionists from the trucking company.
McCutcheon and Hamner Accident and Injury Lawyers belong to a national organization of lawyers who handle truck wreck cases. We meet with this national team of commercial big truck attorneys to update each other on what the trucking companies are doing, how the trucking company lawyers are handling truck crash cases and the best way to protect our injured clients. The horror stories of what these truck insurance companies do to protect themselves is startling. Often,after an accident,the truck driver has to meet with the trucking company lawyer before he goes home. One of our group had a case where a trucking company had a very nice lady fly the family of an injured truck wreck victim to the town where the crash victim was in the hospital,put them up in a hotel,gave them cell phones and meal cards, and then spent all their time learning as much bad information about the truck injury victim and their spouse as possible. The lawyer for the injured truck accident victim did not learn of this until six weeks before trial.
At McCutcheon & Hamner we have our own team of truck wreck experts on call 24 hours a day / 7 days a week that we dispatch to truck wreck scenes immediately-when you contact us about your accident.
What has changed is that over the years injury victims lawyers could always use the "black box" information from the engine control monitor to tell us about the speed of the truckand the trailer braking before impact and still can, but now with various electronic devices such as Qualcom and other third party vehicle information data systems, we can obtain information from companies other than the trucking company. We can use what we learn about the 18 wheeler truck to compare it with the actual truck driver log books. Quite often these two sets of data are different. About 40% of all tractor trailer accidents involve truck driver fatigue. These truck drivers are professionals and they spend alot of time behind the wheel of their big truck. These truck drivers work hard and are often overworked by their trucking company. Their trucking company askes them to drive more than they should and appreciates them when they do, but when a truck accident results,the trucking company has to try and cover up those extra driving requests, where the company has asked the truck driver to work beyond their legal hours of service.
Lawyers can not treat commercial vehicle accidents as if they are a regular car wreck case. Truck wrecks cannot be treated as a regular car wreck, there is an entire set of federal regulations that govern this very dangerous trucking industry.