Truck Accident Injury Attorneys Dayton Ohio
Our part of Ohio sees a tremendous amount of truck traffic every year. With Interstate 75 and Interstate 70, Ohio is the crossroads of America. This means that our daily driving can put us into uncomfortably close contact with a volume of commercial trucks that people in other parts of the country may not be able to fathom. The risk created by that volume of trucks is felt in the number of trucking accidents that occur on our roads every year.
Catastrophic And Fatal Injuries
Accidents involving commercial trucks are much more likely to produce catastrophic and fatal injuries because of the extreme weight differences between a semi and a private passenger vehicle. A loaded semi can weigh 80,000 pounds. A typical car weighs closer to 4,000 pounds.
Another factor making truck accidents difficult is the fact that they often carry very high-limit insurance policies to cover catastrophic injuries. The insurance companies know how much money is at stake and will typically begin working to gather evidence to minimize or fight your claim almost immediately after a serious accident occurs.
Commercial Vehicle Accidents And Their Causes
Truck drivers must follow strict rules when they are behind the wheel. For instance, drivers must take mandatory breaks, avoid drugs and alcohol and keep a log of their travels. Not all drivers follow these rules, however, which is one reason why the most common cause of commercial vehicle accidents is driver error. Common causes include:
- Overloaded Trucks
- Truck Driver Fatigue
- Truck Equipment Failure
- Texting Truckers
- Speeding Trucks
- Jackknife Accidents
Hochman & Plunkett will be by your side regardless of the cause of the accident. We know you need compensation quickly to cover medical costs, replace lost wages and more, which is why we start working immediately to get you the money you deserve.
Semi-trucks are large, heavy vehicles that are difficult to control even when they are properly loaded. When a truck is carrying more weight than it is designed to carry, it can become a hazard to other vehicles and drivers.
A fully loaded semi can weigh up to 80,000 pounds. Even when it is not carrying excess weight, a semi can take more than 110 yards to stop when it is driving 55 miles per hour. An overweight truck takes even longer to stop. Overloaded trucks are also more difficult to control and can result in dangerous jackknife and rollover accidents.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident in Ohio, the driver or trucking company may be liable if the truck was overweight. Our lawyers will conduct an investigation of the cargo to determine:
- If the truck was overloaded
- If the truck driver or trucking company has past weight violations
- If the load was improperly balanced and secured
At Hochman & Plunkett in Dayton, Ohio, our lawyers are committed to offering our clients the representation they need to be able to obtain the maximum compensation for their injuries. By holding truck drivers and their employers accountable for weight violations that result in accidents, we can also help make our roads a little safer. We offer a free initial consultation.
Truck drivers are under economic pressure to stay on the road as long as possible. However, when drivers stay on the road too long without taking a rest break, they put others at risk. Truck driver fatigue is a major cause of truck accidents in Ohio and other states.
Our daily drives can put us into close proximity to tractor-trailers weighing upward of 80,000 pounds. To protect us from drowsy drivers, the Department of Transportation enforces strict hours-of-service rules for truck drivers. For example, trucks carrying freight may drive a maximum of 11 hours after 10 consecutive hours off duty. Drivers cannot stay on the road after 60 hours of duty in seven consecutive days or after 70 hours of duty in eight consecutive days. Drivers must also maintain a logbook to show that they took required rest breaks.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, truck driver fatigue can be a factor in determining liability. Even if the truck driver was not asleep, his or her reaction time may have been slower due to fatigue.
Examples of evidence may indicate how long a driver stayed on the road without a rest break include:
- Gas and food receipts
- Truck GPS records, if equipped
- Toll-road receipts
At Hochman & Plunkett, our lawyers are committed to holding truck drivers and their employers accountable when their negligence hurts innocent people. We know how to conduct in-depth investigations that will uncover evidence of falsified driver logbooks and failure to take required rest breaks. We offer a free initial consultation.
Trucking companies have a legal obligation to properly inspect their fleet of vehicles. That's because a failure to maintain such a large vehicle can lead to an accident in seconds. Given the size of a typical big-rig - coupled with the sheer amount of miles traveled in a single year - unaddressed mechanical issues can endanger all drivers on the road.
Truck drivers and their employers may choose to ignore routine maintenance for different reasons. A truck company may keep a truck on the road to meet shipping needs. A driver may choose to stay on the road for as long as possible, even when an issue is known. When an accident occurs, both the trucker and trucking company may claim they were not aware of the mechanical issue that caused the crash.
Examples of ways that trucks traveling through Ohio can suffer equipment failure include:
- Brake failure
- Tire blowouts
- Tread separations
- Faulty steering devices
- Broken trailer hitches
- Defective headlights
- Broken hydraulic hoses
No matter how your accident happened - and what trucking companies may say - Hochman & Plunkett is on your side. We know how to thoroughly investigate truck drivers and their employers. We routinely pore over inspection and maintenance records. We're ready to hold truck drivers and trucking companies accountable for the reckless behavior that caused your accident.
Truck drivers have a legal responsibility to operate their vehicles safely. As with all other drivers across our area, this means avoiding potentially deadly behavior such as texting while driving. But this doesn't mean that truck drivers avoid looking at their phones to send and receive messages, take photos and visit social media sites while driving.
What makes texting while driving especially dangerous for truck drivers? Due to the size and weight of a typical tractor-trailer, trucks are much more difficult to control. A distracted truck driver may not have time to react to road events such as a vehicle stopped at a red light or a changing traffic signal, thus causing a rear-end crash or T-bone accident in seconds.
At Hochman & Plunkett, we're familiar with the signs of a distracted driving accident. We'll work tirelessly to prove that a distracted driver caused your accident. From investigating mobile phone call and text records to taking photos of skid marks at the scene of your accident, we leave no stone unturned to help truck accident victims throughout Ohio.
Truck drivers face enormous pressure to deliver cargo as quickly and efficiently as possible. In many cases, their ability to earn a living income depends on it. But when a driver resorts to speeding - or simply driving too fast for what road conditions allow - he or she puts every driver on the road in immediate danger. Speeding is the cause of some of our area's most serious truck crashes.
Taking the typical size and weight of a truck into consideration, the dangers of a speeding tractor-trailer truck can include:
- An inability to stop at a traffic signal or while in traffic.
- Jackknifing due to a failure to control a vehicle.
- Departing a roadway or veering into oncoming traffic.
- Hydroplaning on a rain-slicked road.
At Hochman & Plunkett, we're familiar with the signs of speeding - and how to prove fault in high-speed accidents. We routinely visit accident scenes looking for skid marks and other signs of driver negligence. We interview witnesses to obtain critical information about the trucker's actions before the accident - such as passing vehicles at high rates of speed or weaving in and out of traffic.
No matter how your accident happened, we're ready to hold negligent truck drivers accountable for the physical, emotional and financial damage they've caused. Contact Hochman & Plunkett today for a free consultation.
A jackknife accident happens when a truck driver loses control of his trailer, causing it to swing out to one side before spinning around and facing backward. With all other drivers immediately at risk of striking - or being struck by - the trailer, jackknife accidents are among the most deadly types of truck accidents seen on Ohio roads and highways.
Jackknife accidents are especially common on highways and during bad weather such as rain, snow, and fog. Any number of factors can contribute to a jackknife accident, including:
- Sudden braking
- Driver negligence
- Negligent truck maintenance
At Hochman & Plunkett, we understand drivers of smaller vehicles often can do nothing to get out of the way of a jackknifing truck. You may be unable to avoid striking a truck from behind or hitting a trailer head-on. We work tirelessly on behalf of accident victims. We're familiar with the causes of these accidents - and know how to hold negligent truckers and truck companies accountable.
If you are an injured truck driver, you might be eligible for workers' compensation benefits. Speak to our firm today to learn more about the process and to what you might be entitled.
At Hochman & Plunkett, we are committed to offering our clients the representation they need to be able to obtain the maximum compensation for their injuries. We know the impact a trucking accident and the catastrophic injuries it can cause can have on the lives of individuals and their families. Our attorneys have the exceptional litigation skills needed to be able to level the playing field against the insurance companies. We know how to conduct the in-depth investigations that will uncover the evidence required to build the most effective cases for our clients.
Contact Accident Attorneys Of Hochman & Plunkett
If you have been injured in a truck accident, you need to take immediate action to protect your rights. Turn to the skilled and experienced Dayton truck accident injury lawyers of Hochman & Plunkett to ensure that you obtain the compensation you and your family will need. To schedule a free initial consultation, call 937-684-4607 in Dayton, 513-276-4022 in Cincinnati, 937-688-2551 in Springfield, 937-524-0115 in Troy, 614-699-5970 in Columbus, or toll free at 877-623-6863. You can also contact us online.
We take personal injury cases on a contingent fee basis. We are paid only when we win for you.
To better serve our clients, we have offices in Dayton, Cincinnati, Springfield, Troy, and Columbus.