“Toledo Police say the truck was travelling down I-75 onto the exit ramp to I-475 WB when it went off the roadway. The vehicle struck three utility poles before coming to a stop about 500 feet from the highway. The driver, identified as 58-year-old Bradley Brenton, was pinned inside the cab of the truck and had to be extricated by the fire department. He was taken to Toledo Hospital where he was later pronounced dead.”
The United States Department of Transportation Traffic Safety Administration announced in October 2018 that 2017 highway fatality numbers are down compared to the two years prior, but still estimates over 500,000 truck accidents every year with approximately 500 fatalities, of which 81% occur in multi-vehicle crash situations. Every 16 minutes a person is injured or killed from a truck accident. Most of the time the truck accident is caused by a passenger vehicle and approximately 16% of the time the fault falls with the driver of the truck.
Trucks fall into two classes, those weighing 10,000 pounds or less, and those weighing more than 10,000 pounds which may move them to the Commercial Motor Vehicle category and change some of the laws and damages to be sought after in personal injury situations.
What should I do if I am involved in a truck accident in Toledo, Ohio?
- If you are able, check on the condition of the people involved in the accident;
- Call the police or emergency personnel if needed;
- Get a written accident report;
- Remain at the accident scene;
- Exchange driver and insurance information;
- Get witness contact information;
- Call your insurance company to set up a claim;
- Seek out medical treatment if necessary;
- Take pictures of the scene, and the vehicle damages;
- If the truck is a Commercial Vehicle, get State Trooper report;
- Call an accident attorney to determine “fault” and actions toward a proceeding to address damages and injuries sustained. In certain situations, if an attorney believes you have a substantial case, they may take your case on contingency whereby you will not have to come up with funds to pay them up front. The performance of the legal counsel in this case will have to do with the award and damages received from the court, upon which the payment to them will be accounted for.
Hiring a legal professional to assist with the burden of collecting and analyzing the data related to the above list is a viable solution to this overwhelming task if you are an accident victim. Accidents may be caused by one driver, several drivers, road conditions, weather, natural or other causes. Determining the percentage of fault is a matter for those who have reviewed police reports, witness reports, car damages, roadway marks and other factors present at the time of the accident.
This brings us to “Fault” as it pertains to injuries and damages. According to the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV), the threat of license suspension and the addition of more financial responsibility law enforcement mechanisms likely motivated motorists to come into compliance with Ohio law in the years immediately following the strengthening of the law. Since October 1995, law enforcement has been checking Ohio drivers for financial responsibility proof at the scene of a crash, when issuing a traffic citation or during a vehicle safety inspection. When an individual fails to exercise the degree of care expected of someone in that situation, and it results in an injury of some sort, it is called negligence. The basis for most civil lawsuits, negligence laws are established at the state level. Ohio negligence laws stipulate that damages be reduced in proportion to the claimant’s degree of fault, also referred to as contributory negligence.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident with a truck, you need an experienced truck accident lawyer to fight for your rights. The laws and regulations related to the trucking industry, and accidents involving trucks can be difficult to understand. The experienced legal professionals at Schuller Law Offices can offer you their professional services if you call for a consultation.