If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident involving a truck or 18-wheeler, you have the right to pursue compensation for those injuries and any losses you incurred if the truck driver is found at fault. Although truck drivers and the companies they work for are well-insured, you may receive less compensation than what you are entitled to if you face them alone. At Slater & Zurz, our Columbus truck accident lawyers are committed to holding negligent parties accountable for the harm they cause. We will fight to maximize your compensation so you can recover both physically and financially from your commercial truck accident.
Contact our accomplished Columbus truck accident lawyers to get the justice you deserve. We have helped injured victims and their families recover compensation for their losses, or the wrongful death of a loved one, for over 30 years. Our legal team knows how far-reaching a truck accident’s effects are and wishes to provide you and your family with our unwavering support and guidance throughout the claims process. To learn more about your legal options, we welcome you to contact our Columbus personal injury law firm for a free consultation with one of our dedicated lawyers.
Common Truck Accident Injuries
Due to the drastic difference in size and weight between a semi-truck, 18- wheeler or other commercial truck and an automobile, the car’s occupants typically sustain serious injuries. The following are some of the most common types of truck accident injuries.
Head and brain injuries
A truck collision’s immense force can cause severe head injuries. Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) can lead to unconsciousness, paralysis, disability, coma, and death.
Neck and back injuries
The impact of a truck crash can cause a person’s head to be forcefully and quickly thrown backward and then forward. This violent motion can cause damage to the bones, discs, and ligaments in the neck and spine. These injuries range from mild to severe, with the most serious carrying the potential for permanent paralysis and death.
Broken or fractured bones
One of the most frequent truck accident injuries is broken or fractured bones. Many broken bones heal naturally, while others require extensive surgery to repair. If not immediately treated, fractured and broken bones run the risk of causing internal bleeding, nerve damage, infection, and permanent deformity.
Burns and Lacerations
Fire, explosions, shattered glass, and sharp pieces of metal can cause severe burns and lacerations to truck accident victims. Deep cuts and severe burns can be challenging to treat and may require a series of surgeries.
Commercial vehicle crashes contribute to many Ohio highway fatalities. When a loved one dies in a truck crash, the deceased individual’s family can pursue wrongful death compensation. This can help the surviving family members recover from the devastating loss of their loved one.
Truck Accident Causes
According to the Ohio State Patrol, there are nearly 20,000 accidents involving commercial vehicles each year in our state alone. Of those truck accidents, approximately 140 resulted in at least one fatality. Several factors contribute to truck accidents, such as:
- Driver fatigue
- Driving under the influence
- Distracted driving
- Driver inexperience
- Aggressive driving
- Improper load distribution
- Equipment or vehicle defects
- Incorrect trailer attachment
- Hazardous road conditions
- Improper maintenance
Recoverable Damages in a Columbus Truck Accident Case
Truck accident injuries can take a physical, emotional, and physical toll. But if a negligent party caused your injuries, you have the right to pursue compensation for your losses. Recoverable damages depend on the specifics of your case but may include the following:
- Current and future medical expenses
- Current and future lost wages
- Property damage
- Costs for rehabilitation
- Home and vehicle modifications
- Costs for in-home care or a long-term care facility
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
- Wrongful death
Steps to Take After a Columbus Truck Accident
Being involved in a truck accident can be overwhelming and frightening. But it is important to stay calm and take the following steps to protect yourself physically and legally.
- Call 911 – When you are safe and out of harm’s way, call the police to report the truck accident. Tell the officers what happened before, during, and after the crash. Be sure to get a copy of the police report, as it will contain vital information. Police reports generally include the name and contact information of the parties involved, an accident scene diagram, the name and contact information of eyewitnesses, the officer’s assessment of the conditions at the time of the accident, and a list of any citations given.
- Seek medical attention – Go to your doctor, urgent care, or emergency room immediately following your accident. Many injuries aren’t immediately apparent, so it is vital to see a doctor even if you don’t feel injured. A doctor will perform a thorough medical evaluation to ensure any injuries are identified and treated.
- Document what happened – Take photos and video of the accident scene, including all vehicles involved. Then proceed to write down everything that happened. Be sure to include the circumstances leading up to and after the crash. Include even the smallest details, which may be essential in proving liability.
- Adhere to your doctor’s treatment plan – It is important to follow your doctor’s treatment plan to ensure you recover as fully as possible. Additionally, it will help prove the extent of your injuries should you decide to pursue a truck accident claim. Treatment plans include routine doctor visits, prescribed medication, specialist care, and rehabilitation therapy.
- Speak with a Columbus truck accident lawyer – After an accident, it is always best to consult with knowledgeable truck accident lawyers. He or she will listen to your situation, explain your rights and legal options, and help you determine your next step.
In a truck accident lawsuit, you and your attorney must prove the other party was negligent. There are four essential elements in proving negligence. They are as follows:
- The truck driver, trucking company, or a third party owed you a duty of care.
- They breached the duty of care.
- The breach of care caused you or your loved one’s injuries, wrongful death, or other losses.
- You or your loved one suffered losses due to the injury or wrongful death.
Speak with a Knowledgeable Truck Accident Lawyer in Columbus
If you were hurt or lost a loved one in a truck accident, the legal team at Slater & Zurz can help. We know you have so much to deal with after the accident. Let us pursue maximum recovery for your injuries while you heal. Working with us is risk-free, as we handle all truck accident cases on a contingency fee basis. You won’t pay any up-front fees and will owe us nothing unless we obtain compensation on your behalf. To get started on your truck accident case, call (614)756-2714 to schedule a free consultation with one of our skilled Columbus personal injury lawyers.