Missouri – February 8, 2021

Damage recovery awards are often higher when a tractor trailer is involved in a motor vehicle accident due to increased personal injury and expensive property loss.  Factors that will increase the likelihood of damage recovery involve a truck driver’s compliance with state and federal specific trucking restrictions, the determination of fault, and the extent of losses that can be measured and proven to insurance companies and courts of law. A truck accident attorney in Missouri can guide a victim’s actions toward a comprehensive damage award after an accident.  Highway fatalities caused by large trucks in the United States have slightly decreased in recent years, but thousands of lives are still taken every day by accidents involving trucks, or result in long term catastrophic physical injuries.

Legal research case building.

Every accident is unique, and damages are valued based on the information obtained from the victims, witnesses and professionals who arrive at the scene along with a collection of medical reports, police reports, trucking logs, and maintenance reports.  The size and weight discrepancy between a large truck and a passenger vehicle may result in extensive damage and serious injury. A truck’s heavy weight and length can compromise maneuverability and braking distances leading to crash, jackknife and rollover scenarios where multi-vehicle involvement may occur.  The United States Department of Transportation Traffic Safety Administration estimates over 500,000 truck accidents every year, of which 81% occur in multi-vehicle crash situations. Federal and Missouri State Regulations impose mandatory regulations for truck drivers that include accurate mileage log keeping, mandatory rest periods, truck maintenance reporting and higher insurance coverage amounts to name a few.  A truck accident attorney can explain how all of these factors influence a victim’s case for damage recovery.

Pure comparative fault.

Missouri drivers must be able to provide proof of the required state insurance amounts when requested.  Missouri follows a “pure comparative fault” system and drivers will be responsible for the percentage of fault assigned to them regarding damage compensation. A claim must be filed within five years from the date of the accident in most cases, but guidance from a Missouri lawyer is recommended for timeline deviations relevant to the supporting case facts.  Under Missouri Code, an accident victim has five years to file a case against injury, loss, or damages as a result of the action, or inaction of another, in order to recover compensation when fault and/or liability can be proven, and the victim was owed a duty of care.

Financial damage recovery.

Settlement damages for victims may include compensatory damages, which are those damages that cause economic loss, such as lost wages, medical bills, legal fees and property replacement costs, and non-economic loss to victims for pain and suffering.  If a truck driver was found to be grossly negligent, and those actions led to the harms to accident victims, punitive damages may be awarded that are meant to punish the person(s) being sued.

Contact an attorney.

Action toward the best legal outcome and insurance settlement will include hiring a knowledgeable personal injury attorney, because tractor trailer truck accidents involve multiple complex factors that require specific knowledge of the commercial trucking industry, federal and state carrier laws, extensive experience in civil injury laws, and sophisticated investigative capabilities to collect evidence and analyze it to strongly support a negligence claim.

 

Sources:

https://www.modot.org/OSOW

https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/regulations/title49/section/387.1

https://www.bts.gov/content/transportation-accidents-mode

https://www.truckinfo.net/trucking/stats.htm

https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/regulations/title49/b/5/3/list

https://www-fars.nhtsa.dot.gov/Vehicles/VehiclesAllVehicles.aspx

 

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