Timonium Truck Accident Attorney
A truck accident can completely change the trajectory of your life. If you want the best chance of achieving some sense of normalcy again, you must work closely with a Timonium truck accident lawyer.
In this article, we will discuss what you can do in the aftermath of your accident in Timonium or Baltimore County to hold the right parties responsible. We will also highlight why hiring a truck accident attorney is critical in that scenario.
Maryland Trucking Laws and Safety on the Road
Truckers must abide by certain rules and regulations to ensure they can be safe on the road. Parties who violate those laws and cause accidents will be penalized significantly. Let’s discuss some of the Maryland laws most relevant to truck accident cases in this section of the article.
Hours of Service Laws
Driver fatigue is one of the most common causes of truck accidents. As a result, hours of service laws for truckers have been enacted to prevent fatigue-related accidents. Maryland also follows those laws. First, truckers are only allowed to drive a maximum of 11 hours after spending 10 consecutive hours off-duty. A truck driver can also only spend 14 hours on duty after they come off a 10-hour break. They are not allowed to drive beyond that 14th hour.
Also, truckers cannot drive after spending 60/70 hours on the road over 7/8 consecutive days. So if a truck driver wants to assume that workload again, they must spend 34 consecutive hours off-duty first. They strictly enforce these hours of service laws, and trucking companies that force their drivers to ignore them can be held accountable by the law. Make sure you and your 18-wheeler accident attorney act against the trucking company if they were responsible for keeping their tired drivers on the road for too long.
Rules Regarding Sick Drivers
We all know drivers should not be on the road if they are tired or intoxicated, but the law also states that truckers in Maryland should not get behind the wheel if they are sick. The trucking company is also responsible for checking the health of its drivers. If one of their sick drivers is on the road, they will be accountable for any accidents they cause.
Pre-Trip Inspections Are Required
Truck drivers, trucking companies, and their partner businesses are required to conduct pre-trip inspections to ensure that the important components of the vehicles are in proper working condition. Drivers are not to hit the road unless the components of their vehicles meet the established operational guidelines. Anyone who ignores those issues could face litigation if an accident occurs.
While we are on the subject of truck accidents, we also need to talk about the rule of contributory negligence. For those who may be unaware, the rule of contributory negligence states that plaintiffs will become barred from recovering damages if they share even 1% of the blame for an accident. Maryland still follows the doctrine of contributory negligence, and it greatly impacts how cases turn out. Therefore, you and your truck accident lawyer must work carefully to ensure that contributory negligence will not be a factor in your case.
Where Are Truck Wrecks Occurring?
An experienced trailer tractor accident attorney can help you deal with the aftermath of your crash. Still, avoiding the accident altogether would be ideal. You can stay safer on the road by knowing where truck accidents frequently occur. According to the National Safety Council, most fatal large truck accidents occur on rural roads. More specifically, 54.66 of those crashes happened while truck drivers were driving through rural areas.
Fatal large truck accidents also occur more frequently on non-interstate roadways. The numbers indicate that 73.29% of those crashes happened on non-interstate roads.
Focusing on Maryland only, drivers should do their best to minimize their usage of MD 202 and MD 90 if they want to stay as safe as possible. Those are among the most accident-prone roadways in Maryland, and you do not want to be there when the trucks are out.
Interstate roads, including Route 95, Route 195, and Route 395, are also infamous hotspots for truck crashes. Exercise additional caution while using those interstate roads if you want to stay safe. If you are involved in a crash, remember that a truck accident lawyer can still help you out.
Lawyers Holding Negligent Truck Drivers Accountable
Truck accidents may occur for a variety of reasons. Let’s talk about the potential causes of truck accidents in this section of the article and discuss how best to avoid them.
- Driver Fatigue – We already touched on this earlier, but fatigued truck drivers truly do pose a threat to everyone in their vicinity. Drivers should know better than to get on the road when they are already tired from working so long.
- Intoxicated Driving – You should get your attorney involved if you suspect an intoxicated driver caused your accident. There is no excuse for ever driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, so anyone who engages in irresponsible behavior must be held accountable.
- Distracted Driving – Some truck drivers driving through Lutherville-Timonium may get bored and start using their phones. Truck drivers work long hours through the night, so it is easy to see how boredom can be an issue. That said, truck drivers must still avoid giving in to distractions.
Truckers must always pay attention to the road and never let their thoughts wander. Even a momentary lapse in concentration can have disastrous consequences for truck drivers, so they must stay focused.
- Reckless Driving – A truck driver may start speeding to meet their approaching deadline. Engaging in behavior like that and other forms of reckless driving can be dangerous. Truckers put their fellow motorists at great risk when they drive like that.
- Improper Cargo Loading – Truck accidents may also happen because the vehicles were not properly loaded. Therefore, the trucking company’s partner businesses should take the time to load cargo carefully unless they want to end up on the receiving end of a personal injury lawsuit.
- Equipment Failure – Lastly, large truck crashes may also be from equipment failure. Of course, equipment failure could be related to poor maintenance. Still, it can attribute to shoddy products.
Investigating the Scene of the Crash for Important Evidence
Hiring a truck accident injury lawyer is a must if you want to maximize your chances of winning your case. Lawyers offer many essential services to plaintiffs in personal injury cases. Among the most important services they provide is investigating the accident site. You and the defendant may have wildly differing accounts regarding the incident in question, but the evidence gathered at the scene will not be biased. Instead, they will simply tell the story of what happened.
While at the accident site, your Timonium personal injury lawyer can take photographs of the wreckage and the surrounding area. They can note any tread marks on the road that could hint at which vehicle was out of control. They can also capture pictures of your destroyed vehicle to illustrate the severe damage done to you and your property. Lawyers can also speak to owners of nearby establishments and inquire about video recordings. Accident videos often serve as compelling evidence and could tilt the odds in your favor.
Your legal representative can also track down people who can provide additional information regarding the incident. For example, they can talk to the police, ask for a copy of the official accident report, and get in touch with witnesses willing to provide statements. Simply put, the work put in by your truck accident lawyer in Timonium to investigate your accident can make or break your case. So make sure you hire an individual committed to bringing the facts to light if you want to recoup the compensation you deserve.
Protecting Your Rights
Personal injury lawyers must protect the rights of their clients. They will use every tool in their arsenal to win your truck accident lawsuit and shield you from improperly attributed liability. How will your 18 wheeler accident lawyer in Timonium protect your rights? We highlight the different ways they can help in the section below.
Stop You from Accidentally Accepting Blame
Earlier in this article, we noted that plaintiffs could miss receiving compensation if they share even 1% of the blame for an accident. That is a relatively low bar to trip over, and you can expect the defendant and their representatives to put it in front of you constantly. When they contact you under the pretense of checking on your condition, you must realize that they are likely also laying the groundwork for their defense.
Avoid making a costly mistake during your conversations with the other side. Instead, work with a legal representative who can handle those conversations and protect your rights in the process.
Gather the Pieces of Evidence You Need
Not all of the evidence in your truck accident will be easily obtainable. For instance, you may need the driver logs from the trucking company to prove that they were overworking their employees. You need to get a truck wreck lawyer involved to get your hands on those logs. Your legal representative understands how to press for valuable evidence. They can utilize various methods to obtain those precious pieces of evidence and use them to strengthen your case.
Ensure That You File the Lawsuit on Time
Lastly, your attorney can also protect your rights by helping you file on time. A plaintiff in a truck accident case typically has three years from the date of the crash to file their lawsuit. Allow them to take care of that filing so you can avoid exceeding the time limit.
Who Is Responsible for a Truck Wreck?
To receive compensation for your losses following your truck accident in Timonium, you must first identify the party responsible for it. Different parties could be deemed liable for the truck accident, and they include:
- Truck Drivers – You can sue a truck driver if their negligence or recklessness directly contributed to the accident.
- Trucking Companies – Trucking companies that subject their drivers to poor working conditions can be negligent. You can also blame them for the accident if their inadequate maintenance led to the crash.
- Partner Companies – The trucking company’s partners may share the blame for an accident if their actions made the vehicle more likely to crash.
- Parts Suppliers – Companies who produce replacement parts for trucks can also be sued for an accident if they sell goods that are defective in some way.
What Is My 18-Wheeler Settlement Worth?
The value of a settlement in a truck accident case can range from a little over a thousand dollars to millions of dollars. But, ultimately, its value will depend on the losses you sustained. Plaintiffs who suffered severe injuries such as broken bones, organ damage, and concussions are more likely to receive substantial settlement offers. You may also receive a substantial offer if you suffered significant property damage from the accident.
Secure the largest settlement offer possible by hiring an experienced attorney to handle your case.
Located north of Baltimore City, Timonium is perhaps best known for hosting the Maryland State Fair around Labor Day each year. While visiting Timonium for the Maryland State Fair, it is hard not to notice the locale’s distinctly suburban vibe. It is a peaceful place that could serve as an ideal spot for raising your young family. Timonium is also home to a lot of great schools, so your kids will have access to great education if you decide to live there.
Timonium’s overall cost is somewhat higher than the rest of the country. However, the cost of living there is still lower compared to other parts of Maryland.
Contact John Leppler Today
Timonium truck accident attorney John Leppler has helped numerous truck accident victims recover damages following their disastrous encounters with negligent drivers and companies. Secure his services for your case by reaching out to us at Leppler Injury Law. We will work with you every step of the way until you claim what is rightfully yours.