256-333-5000

Florence Truck Accident Lawyer

At McCutcheon & Hamner, the pursuit of justice for our clients and their cases NEVER STOPS! Call us at (256) 333-5000. We are here to take your call and answer your questions.

Help Starts Here

Free & Confidential

Dedicated & Experienced Florence Truck Accident Lawyers

Florence is a peaceful city, but we see our share of truck accidents, especially along Helton Drive, Cox Creek Parkway, Huntsville Road, and Florence Boulevard. Commercial trucks can weigh upwards of 80,000 pounds. When they collide with a non-commercial vehicle, the injuries can be devastating for victims and their families. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, nearly 5,000 fatal crashes and 108,000 injuries in 2020 involved large trucks and buses. Reach out to a Florence truck accident lawyer.

Truck accident injuries can require extensive and costly medical treatments which can leave victims of these tragic accidents and their families dealing with the long-term medical, lifestyle, and financial consequences. When someone suffers injuries in a truck accident due to another party’s negligence, they deserve to be compensated for all their losses. 

The experienced attorneys from McCutcheon & Hamner help truck accident victims recover maximum compensation so they can focus on their own recovery. We have a team of tried and tested truck accident reconstructionists who are on call 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. This system has resulted in millions of dollars paid to our clients.

Call us at (256) 333-5000 today to schedule an appointment with our Florence truck accident lawyer.

Who May Be Held Liable for Injuries in a Trucking Accident?

Trucking accidents are often more complex than car crashes because they often involve multiple parties. Any party that played a role in the accident may be held liable for the damages they caused. Potential parties that may be held responsible for a trucking accident include:

  • The truck driver who caused the accident

  • The trucking company that employs the truck driver

  • The owner of the truck involved in the accident

  • The company responsible for the cargo the truck was carrying

  • The individuals or company responsible for loading the cargo

  • The manufacturer and maintenance team of the truck

An experienced truck accident attorney can investigate your accident and identify all potentially responsible parties, increasing your chances of securing maximum compensation.

How a Truck Driver’s Negligence Contributes to Trucking Accidents

Many truck accidents are caused by human error, such as:

Fatigue

Long hours on the road can lead to exhaustion. Fatigued truckers lose focus and make mistakes more easily. According to the National Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), fatigue is a factor in up to 30 percent of all truck accidents. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) limits the number of hours truck drivers can drive in a 24-hour period to prevent driver fatigue. The administration also requires drivers to take breaks and rest periods to help ensure they are well-rested and alert while on the road. However, some drivers may push themselves to drive beyond the allowed hours.

Truck Driver Inexperience

Truck drivers lacking in experience may not have the necessary skills or knowledge to safely operate a large commercial vehicle and may be more likely to be involved in single or multi-vehicle crashes. They also may not be as familiar with the regulations and safety guidelines for commercial vehicles, or understand the importance of following proper maintenance, inspections, and loading procedures. They may also lack the training to safely manage difficult driving conditions, like poor weather, steep inclines, or heavy traffic, and may not be able to react quickly and appropriately when emergencies arise.

Truck Driving Under the Influence

Driving under the influence is illegal for all drivers, especially truckers behind the wheel of huge commercial vehicles. The blood alcohol content (BAC) level for truck drivers is lower than for Alabama motorists. It is illegal for truck drivers to operate a commercial vehicle with a BAC of 0.04% or higher, while the BAC limit for non-commercial motorists in Alabama is 0.08%. Truck drivers are also required to be regularly drug tested.

Distracted Driving

Truckers who text, talk on the phone, eat, drink, or set navigation systems while driving are driving while distracted and at risk of causing an accident. Even a momentary distraction can have deadly consequences, especially when a multi-ton vehicle is involved. According to the FMCSA, distracted driving contributes to 8 percent of fatal crashes involving commercial trucks.

Speeding

A speeding commercial truck can be deadly. When speeding, these massive, heavy trucks take longer to come to a complete stop and, when they do collide with another vehicle, they hit with more force. Furthermore, when a truck driver is going too fast, they have less time to react to unexpected situations.

How Trucking Companies May Be Responsible for Truck Accidents

Trucking companies must follow federal rules and regulations designed to prevent accidents. Any oversight or intentional misconduct on the trucking company’s part can lead to a serious truck accident. Here are some common errors trucking companies make that can lead to a truck accident.

Failure to Maintain Their Commercial Vehicles

Trucking companies must conduct routine inspections and maintenance on their vehicles to ensure all parts and systems are functioning properly. Missing a scheduled inspection or maintenance appointment or not promptly repairing damage or defects can lead to a system failure that can create a hazard to the trucker and other motorists. For example, if a trucking company does not replace a balding tire and that tire blows out on the highway, it can cause the trucker to lose control and collide with another motorist. 

Negligent Hiring Practices

Trucking companies must hire drivers who are qualified and professional. To ensure this, carriers should conduct background checks on all applicants and review their records for any criminal activity,, sketchy employment history, and hazardous or dangerous traffic violations. Truckers should also be experienced and qualified to drive the commercial vehicle. Sometimes trucking companies have staffing shortages and resort to hiring inexperienced drivers to maintain their profits. Knowingly hiring an unqualified or risky driver is negligent on the trucking company’s part and could have deadly consequences for other motorists on the road..

Negligent Retention

Not only should trucking companies fully vet truck driver applicants before hiring them, they should also regularly evaluate them to ensure they are complying with state and federal regulations and laws. A trucking company that fails to do this may be liable for a driver’s accident. In fact, the Department of Transportation (DOT) requires trucking companies to test all CDL drivers for drugs before they begin working for the company and to perform random drug testing each year. Furthermore, when a truck accident occurs, the DOT accident checklist determines if a driver must be drug tested.

Failure to Supervise

Trucking companies must supervise their drivers. If they fail to do so, then they may be held liable for the harm one of their drivers causes another person while serving in the capacity of their job. Trucking companies must ensure that their employees comply with state and federal regulations and laws and discipline or terminate drivers who fail to follow those guidelines.

 

Holding the Responsible Party Accountable

When commercial semi-truck drivers have accidents, the truck drivers have a plan to limit or contain the trucking company’s liability damage. Often big rig semi-trucks are equipped with cameras and the trucks are always equipped with instructions to call the trucking company. This means that the trucking company will have their own investigator, especially in the case of a serious injury on the way to the tractor-trailer accident sometimes before the police are on the way to the truck crash scene.

Most commercial cars and trucks, like airplanes, have “black boxes”. These are known as Event Data Recorders and they record certain vehicle information. Commercial vehicle data measurement varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. Tractor-trailer accidents involve two or three major black box manufacturers, these commercial vehicle black boxes record several days back, covering things like time of use, average truck speed, and vehicle speed at the time just before the last braking event occurred. This is information the trucking company often does not want you to have if you are involved in an accident with their vehicle. For example, one of the last cases we had where the truck was traveling 13 mph in excess of the posted speed limit before the driver lost control.

It is very important that the trucking company receive a “preservation letter” so that our truck accident expert can be present when the commercial vehicle data is downloaded and so that the semi-truck remains in the same condition it was in at the time of the accident. We have seen cases where truckers used mismatched brakes from the left to right side and other cases where tractor-trailer brakes were not within the specifications required by the Department of Transportation (DOT). Obviously, trucking companies do not want people injured in accidents with their vehicles to know these facts.

Cars can have EDRs (black boxes) and some give changes in speed, brake action, accelerator action, and whether or not seatbelts were buckled or airbags deployed when an accident occurs. Obviously, these facts are important when investigating vehicle accidents. Time is of the essence when a serious injury or death occurs in connection with an accident.

Commercial & Charter Truck Accidents

Every 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 & Hamner belongs to a national organization of lawyers who handle truck accident cases. We meet with this national team of commercial big truck attorneys regularly 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 the measures these truck insurance companies go to to protect themselves are startling. Often, after an accident, the truck driver has to meet with the trucking company’s lawyer before he goes home.

One of our groups had a case where a trucking company had a very nice lady fly the family of an injured truck accident 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 accident victim and their spouse as possible. The lawyer for the injured truck accident victim did not learn of this until six weeks before trial. This is simply wrong.

Contact a Florence Truck Accident Attorney at McCutcheon & Hamner Today

At McCutcheon & Hamner, we have our own team of truck accident experts on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week that we dispatch to the scene of commercial vehicle accidents immediately when you contact us about your accident. We do this so that the trucking company and their insurance provider cannot try to manipulate you into taking less compensation than you deserve.  

You can trust the personal injury lawyers at McCutcheon & Hamner to fight for maximum compensation in your truck accident case.

If you or a loved one is involved in an accident with a commercial vehicle or any vehicle, call 911 – then contact the Florence truck accident attorneys at (256) 333-5000 or fill out our online contact form today.

Florence Office

2210 Helton Drive
Florence, AL 35630
(256) 333-5000

The Opinions That Matter Most

Our Clients Share Their Stories

We were very happy with Mr. Hamner as our lawyer.
“He was nice, kept us informed, and wrapped our case up in a timely manner!”
- S. Fortenbury
Professional & Reliable
“Saying they are professional and reliable attorneys is an understatement. They have gone above and beyond to help me, even when I was unreasonable and impatient.”
- C.M.
Previous
Next

Why Hire Us?

Let Us Fight For You

Your Recovery Is Our Priority