]If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck or trailer accident, you are undoubtedly left with questions regarding how to proceed. A number of factors are involved when it comes to determining the cause, liability (who is “at fault”), and course of action to take after a truck accident. Consulting a truck accident expert is crucial to making sure you are compensated fairly, even if you decide not to sue.
Understanding the common causes for trucking accidents, as well as the inner-workings of truck driver, truck owner, and insurance company relationships can help reduce the burden placed on you and your family in determining whether you have a valid claim.
Truck Accident Statistics
In the past 20 years, the number of truck accidents has increased by 20%.
According to the Federal Motor carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), in 2002, 4,897 individuals died and 130,000 people were injured in crashes that involved a large truck. And even though large trucks are only responsible for 3% of injury-causing motor vehicle accidents, trucking accidents typically cause much greater harm than ordinary traffic accidents due to the large size and heavy weight of most trucks.
Georgia & Federal Laws Governing Trucks
Federal laws and regulations are in place to help assure that trucks and trailers can share the roads safely with citizens and with each other. Most of these regulations are found in Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations. The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) are responsible for enforcing the safety guidelines set out in federal law. Each state also has its own department of transportation with its own rules and regulations governing truck safety.