What To Do If You Were Hit by a Semi-Truck?
There are plenty of commercial trucks traveling throughout the state of California. These vehicles pose a greater risk of serious injury in the event of a crash involving traditional passenger vehicles. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), a fully loaded semi-truck can weigh more than 80,000 pounds. This means even the slightest collision with a passenger vehicle can result in a catastrophic accident.
If you or a loved one has been involved in a collision with a semi-truck, there are several important steps you need to take to protect your legal rights and ensure that you get the full compensation you are entitled to.
Important Steps to Take After a Truck Crashes Into Your Car
- Seek Medical Care. Perhaps the most important step to take after a truck accident is to immediately seek medical care and attention. If the extent of your injuries did not require emergency transport to the hospital from the scene of the accident, you still need to make an appointment with your doctor as soon as possible. This will help make sure you are on the right course to recovery as well as help prove to the insurance carrier the extent of your injuries.
- Call the Police. You need to get the local police or California Highway Patrol involved so they can immediately investigate your accident. A traffic collision report will provide important information about the truck driver and trucking company’s insurance, as well as determine who is actually at fault.
- Report the Accident. It is important that you immediately report the accident to your insurance carrier. However, you should not give details about how the accident happened. You also should not give any statements about your injuries or the details of the accident with the truck driver’s insurance company until you have spoken to and retained an experienced California truck accident attorney.
- Do Not Sign Anything. If it is obvious that the truck driver was liable for the crash, the insurance carrier will likely contact you to sign certain documents. They may try to force you to give a recorded statement and ask you to provide your medical records to obtain a quick settlement. It is important to understand that insurance adjusters are working to protect themselves only. They do not care about you or your injuries. They want to settle your claim for as little as possible, as quickly as possible. You need to decline signing anything and giving any recorded statement.
- Retain a California Truck Accident Attorney. Another important step to take after a truck accident is to contact an experienced truck accident attorney as soon as possible. An attorney will guide you and help you get the compensation that you are entitled to for your case. Without a strong legal advocate on your side, the insurance company will take all steps to downplay the extent of your injuries and only offer a fraction of what your case is actually worth.
Common Injuries Sustain in a Truck Crash
When any type of large truck crashes into a passenger motor vehicle, the individuals in the motor vehicle are more susceptible to sustaining injurie than the ones in the truck. The reason is that trucks are much larger vehicles and have higher clearance which can cause the smaller vehicles to go under them in a crash.
Below are some common types of injuries generally suffered by truck accident victims:
- Open and close head injuries, including a TBI
- Broken, fractured or shattered bones
- Cuts and abrasions
- Neck and back injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Whiplash or other types of soft tissue injuries
- Nerve damage
Types of Compensation
If you have suffered any type of injury in a truck crash, every step you take or fail to take can impact the outcome of your claim. You have to prove your damages to get the full compensation that you deserve. Having an experienced California truck accident lawyer on your side is imperative to getting the justice that you deserve.
Depending on the specific facts of your case you may be entitled to:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Loss of wages
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Pain and suffering and other non-economic damages
- Wrongful death damages
Additionally the court may also award punitive damages in some cases to set an example in the trucking industry. Some examples of when punitive damages may be awarded include cases where a truck driver or trucking company knowingly and willfully failed to abide by the safety laws and regulations or operated the truck in an extremely dangerous manner resulting in the crash.
Contact Us for a Free Consultation!
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck collision, contact the Law Offices of Samer Habbas. Our California truck accident attorneys specialize in handling truck accident cases and have the experience to help you get reimbursed for your lost wages, past and future medical expenses and any other costs related to your accident.
Please call us at 1-949-873-0755 to discuss your case with an expert truck accident attorney or you can fill out our free consultation form.