The knowledgeable truck accident lawyers at the Law Offices of John C. Manoog III have been representing Cape Cod residents in these and other personal injury cases for decades. We are skilled litigators and accomplished negotiators who fight aggressively on behalf of our clients while pursuing opportunities to avoid costly and time-consuming court battles through settlement. Led by a former insurance defense attorney and recognized authority in vehicle accident litigation, our firm offers a solid combination of experience, insight, and ability that allows us to build strong cases for the individuals whom we represent.Dangers Associated with Overweight or Overloaded Trucks
Tractor-trailers pose a number of inherent dangers to motorists and other people on the road, due to both their sheer size and the long stretches of hours that their drivers are often required to log. While there are a number of federal laws and regulations aimed at limiting these hazards, the potential for serious accidents still persists. Roughly 4,000 people are killed and another 10,000 injured each year in crashes involving large trucks. The heavier these vehicles are, the harder they are to stop and the more force they have when striking a car or other object. Heavy loads also mean more wear and tear on equipment, increasing the possibility that a truck causes an accident by breaking down or blowing a tire.Filing a Negligence Claim Against a Commercial Driver or Trucking Company
A driver or truck company that allows a vehicle to be operated with loads beyond the mandatory limits is likely to be legally responsible for any accidents that result. This is true whether a heavy load caused the tractor-trailer’s equipment to fail or the weight of the overloaded vehicle made the accident more severe. Generally, a company will be held responsible for the actions of its driver if the crash happens while he or she is on duty, engaged in work for the entity.
In most cases, a victim can try to hold a defendant liable for an accident based on the theory of negligence. In order to prove negligence, the injured person has to show that the person or entity being sued (the defendant) breached what the law calls a “duty of care” that was owed to the plaintiff. Truck drivers and their employers have a responsibility to adhere to federal and state regulations governing their industry, as well as taking reasonable precautions when operating and loading their vehicles. Thus, a breach of the duty of care could happen when a trucker or a company carelessly allows a truck to be overloaded or decides to break the regulations to store more cargo on the truck.
The victim needs to show that the negligent overloading or other careless behavior was the direct cause of the accident. Once this has been proven, he or she can point to any quantifiable damages that were sustained as a result. These can range from economic costs, like hospital bills and missed wages, to more subjective types of damages like pain and suffering.Potential Liability of Third Parties
In the event of an equipment failure, a third party like a vehicle manufacturer or parts maker may also be liable for a crash if the equipment failed to work as intended. Massachusetts operates under a joint and several liability system, in which each responsible party is fully liable for the damages that result from an accident, regardless of the degree of that party’s fault. A liable defendant ordered to pay the full amount of damages can then seek to get some of that money back from the other responsible parties.Consult a Massachusetts Lawyer after a Truck Accident
At the Law Offices of John C. Manoog III, we understand the strategies that insurers and trucking companies regularly employ to try to limit their liability after a crash. We have a strong track record of success, including a number of six- and seven-figure settlements for injured Massachusetts residents. If you have been hurt in a motor vehicle collision, our attorneys will be happy to meet with you to discuss your options. We can travel to you if you are unable to come to our offices in Hyannis and Plymouth. We do not charge a fee in many cases unless we are successful. Call us at 888-262-6664 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation. Nós Falamos Português.