The actions you take following a semi-truck accident—or inaction in some instances—can significantly alter the outcome of the accident. Following your semi-truck accident, you may face severe, even catastrophic injuries and may be unable to work and make a living. 

Your life may feel like a constant stream of doctor visits or even surgeries and rehabilitative therapies. A never-ending influx of medical bills may have severely compromised your financial security. Do you know what to do after a semi-truck accident? These steps can ensure that your future is secured to the greatest extent possible, and can also help your semi-truck accident attorney build a solid case on your behalf. 

  1. The first priority, following a semi-truck accident should always be to obtain medical attention for all those injured in the accident. All too often, when asked about injuries following an accident, those involved will say they are “fine.” During an accident, adrenaline floods the body, often masking injury symptoms. Even if you believe you are not severely injured, you should still see a doctor and have them check you out. If you do not, then hours or days later when you realize that you are injured, it can be more difficult to build a solid case. 
  2. While at the scene of the accident, if you are able, exchange information with the truck driver, including insurance information and contact information. If your injuries are not too severe, take photographs of the vehicles, the scene of the accident, and anything else that will support your claim for damages. 
  3. If there were witnesses to the accident, obtain their contact information. This can be an invaluable source of information for your semi-truck accident attorney, as it can be difficult to track down witnesses after the fact. 
  4. The police officer who arrives at the scene will prepare a police report regarding the accident. If liability is clear, this will be noted in the police report. You can ask the officer when and where you can get a copy of the police report to give to your attorney. 
  5. Once you are home from the hospital, you will need to call your own insurance company and let them know about the accident. Relay the basic facts of the accident to your insurance company. 
  6. If the trucking company’s insurance company calls you, it is best that you do not speak to them until you have an attorney representing you. They may ask you if they can record your conversation in an attempt to get you to say something that can be taken out of context and used to deny your claim. 
  7. Contact an experienced semi-truck accident attorney from Tronfeld West & Durrett as soon as you are able. Once you have met with one of our highly skilled attorneys, you can focus your time and energy on healing from your injuries while we fight for your rights and seek a fair settlement that will cover all of your damages. 
  8. When you can, write down any details you can remember about the accident. Even the smallest, seemingly insignificant detail could be important, so write down anything you can remember.  

Why Do You Need an Attorney After a Semi-Truck Accident?

What to do after a semi-truck accident is not the only thing you need to be aware of. There are many additional complexities associated with a semi-truck accident that are not an issue in a “regular” accident involving two passenger vehicles. Because of these added complications, it is absolutely imperative that you have a strong semi-truck accident attorney looking out for your rights and your future. 

Liability in Semi-Truck Accidents

Unlike a “normal” car accident, there can be more than one liable party when you are involved in a semi-truck wreck. The truck driver may have personally been to blame if he or she was distracted, impaired, overly fatigued, or driving recklessly or carelessly. If the trucking company hired an unvetted driver or hired a driver who was not properly trained, then the company could bear some responsibility for the accident. If the driver was overly fatigued as a result of exceeding allowable driving hours, then the trucking company was likely aware of this as well. 

Causes of Semi-Truck Accidents

Often, truck accidents are caused by bad brakes or tires on the semi-truck. While the driver is supposed to routinely check the brakes and tires, the maintenance company should never allow a truck on the road if it has not been fully checked out. Some truck accidents are the result of shifting or falling cargo, which could mean that the loading company bears some responsibility for your accident. Finally, if a defective truck part caused the accident, then the manufacturer of that part could be partially liable. 

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The Role of a Semi-Truck Accident Attorney

A knowledgeable semi-truck accident attorney understands that liability could be shared between several parties and knows how to hold those parties responsible for your damages. In addition to the question of liability, there are many more reasons to hire a highly skilled semi-truck accident attorney from Tronfeld West & Durrett, including:

  • Trucking regulations can be extremely complicated, with specific standards met by truck drivers on a continuous basis. Truck drivers must keep up with annual inspections, track scheduled truck maintenance, maintain their own qualifications, and accurately log their hours and rest periods. 
  • Since injuries—and therefore damages—are often more serious in a truck accident, a strong semi-truck accident attorney can:
  • Comprehensively investigate the details of your accident, gathering evidence and decisively determining fault
  • Accurately calculate your damages, including medical expenses, future medical expenses, lost wages, future lost wages, and pain and suffering
  • Build a strong claim on your behalf, then negotiate with the insurance company or companies on your behalf
  • Handle all communications with the at-fault party or parties and their insurers
  • Help you get the medical treatments you need to get better
  • Protect your legal rights from beginning to end
  • Persuasively argue your case in court, in the event that negotiations do not result in an equitable settlement

The sheer size and weight of a semi-truck generally result in severe injuries or death for those in the smaller vehicle. Additionally, some trucks may be hauling hazardous or flammable materials that can exponentially increase the likelihood of catastrophic injuries. Your injuries, coupled with the emotional impact of such a severe accident, can make it difficult for you to fight for a fair settlement on your own. Experienced semi-truck accident attorneys from Tronfeld West & Durrett fight for their clients on a daily basis. 

Choosing the Right Attorney

When you choose the Tronfeld West & Durrett attorneys, you can rest easy, knowing that they truly care about you and your future. Our attorneys are highly respected in the industry. We will help you figure out exactly what to do after a semi-truck accident. We will advocate for your rights and work diligently to ensure fair compensation for all of your damages. 

Our skilled legal team will guide you through the nuanced legal process as we negotiate and/or litigate your claim, working hard to achieve the best possible outcome for you.  The Richmond Tronfeld West & Durrett personal injury attorneys also serve clients throughout the state in Chesterfield, Mechanicsville, Petersburg, Newport News, Virginia Beach, Fredericksburg, Chesapeake, and Norfolk. Contact Tronfeld West & Durrett today. 

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