If you suffered injuries in a truck accident in Nevada, you may file a truck accident claim to pursue compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and more. To get the money you need, you must establish who was responsible for the accident. How do you know when an accident results from a truck driver’s negligence?
Understanding Truck Driver Negligence
A truck driver may be negligent in a truck accident if the driver fails to exercise reasonable care or to consider the foreseeable harm that dangerous driving could cause others on the road. In other words, a driver would be considered negligent if they do not act as a reasonably prudent driver would in a similar situation.
For example, a sensible truck driver would never consume alcohol and then drive. Impaired driving could cause an accident and severely injure or even kill someone. A truck driver would be considered negligent if they ignored the foreseeable harm that consuming alcohol and driving might cause.
Examples of Negligence by Truck Drivers
In addition to driving while impaired, truck driver negligence might take the form of:
- Distracted driving – Activities such as eating and drinking, texting, adjusting a radio, or programming a GPS navigation system may cause a driver to lose their focus on the task of driving a tractor-trailer. Truck drivers also can be distracted by billboards, flashing lights, or animals crossing the road.
- Fatigued driving – Many truck drivers work long hours and spend many hours behind the wheel. As a result, driver fatigue and drowsy driving are common issues that lead to truck accidents. A driver should get adequate rest to avoid driving while dangerously fatigued.
- Driver error – This could mean failing to yield the right of way at an intersection, making an improper lane change, or failing to follow state or Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations.
- Reckless or careless driving – A negligent truck driver might drive too fast for road conditions or follow other vehicles too closely.
Many truck accidents occur due to the negligence of multiple parties. For instance, A truck driver may drive too fast for traffic conditions and lose control of the vehicle when a worn tire blows out. Likewise, a trucking company’s lack of adequate maintenance of its trucks might have contributed to a tire blowout or brakes out of adjustment.
Does the Insurance Company Have the Final Say on Fault?
No, insurance companies do not have the final say on fault. You have a legal right to challenge the insurance company’s determination. That is an important right if the insurer undervalues or denies your claim.
The insurance company aims to protect its bottom line in a truck accident claim by minimizing settlement payouts. Insurance companies often seek quick closure of claims. To limit liability, insurers often blame victims and pressure them to accept lowball settlement offers.
Working with a knowledgeable Las Vegas truck accident lawyer who handles truck accident claims gives you a better chance of receiving a truck accident settlement that covers your losses. In addition, an attorney can strengthen your claim with compelling evidence and stand up to the insurance companies on your behalf.
What Is Modified Comparative Negligence in Nevada?
Nevada follows a legal doctrine known as modified comparative negligence. Comparative negligence laws determine how much compensation an accident victim can recover if they are partially to blame for a wreck.
Nevada law says that crash victims can still seek compensation for an accident if they are partly at fault. However, a victim’s financial recovery decreases in accordance with the percentage of fault a court of law assigns them. If a victim is more than 50 percent at fault for an accident, they can lose the right to demand compensation.
The modified comparative negligence doctrine applies directly to lawsuits. However, it also affects settlements and how insurance companies approach claims. For example, if an insurer thinks a court might find you at fault for an accident, they will factor that into any offer to settle a truck accident claim.
Parties Liable in a Truck Accident Case
One or several parties could be legally responsible for a truck accident. The responsible parties might include:
- The truck driver
- The trucking company
- The truck owner
- A tire manufacturer
- A truck manufacturer
- A cargo loading company
- Another motorist
- A truck maintenance mechanic
Commercial truck drivers must follow strict hours of service rules mandated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). If drivers violate the hours-of-service rules and cause drowsy driving accidents, they might be liable.
The FMCSA also has general and commodity-specific rules for securing cargo. For example, a cargo loading company might be liable if a truck accident occurs due to improper cargo placement, loose restraints, or overloaded cargo.
A trucking company could be liable for an accident if it were negligent in its hiring, training, or supervision practices. In addition, the truck owner could be liable for failing to inspect or maintain the vehicle.
Furthermore, a truck manufacturer might be responsible for using defective parts to make a truck component. At the same time, a mechanic might be liable if they fail to inspect their work after performing repairs.
Proving Trucking Negligence
Our attorneys at Sam & Ash Injury Law seek persuasive evidence of how a truck accident occurred to prove negligence. Gathering and preserving evidence can be challenging due to the nature of the trucking industry and the numerous parties involved. We may need to go to court to gain access to examine a tractor-trailer involved in a collision.
Our truck accident attorneys can work to prove negligence in your trucking accident case by taking the following steps:
- Collecting expert testimony from doctors and financial planners
- Hiring accident reconstruction specialists
- Examining maintenance and inspection records for the truck
- Interviewing witnesses
- Obtaining the police accident report
- Obtaining and analyzing the truck’s black box data
- Reviewing safety records for the truck and truck driver
- Reviewing the truck driver’s logbooks, training, cell phone, and employment records
Talk to a Seasoned Truck Accident Attorney in Las Vegas Today
When someone does you wrong, you deserve What’s Right. The attorneys at Sam & Ash Injury Law are ready to assist you. We’ve recovered hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation for clients in difficult situations like you. Our legal team is prepared to put our experience to work for you. Call or contact us today for a free case review with a truck accident attorney in Las Vegas.