Florida is among the states reported to have the higher number of truck accidents with most of those accidents occurring in rural areas, day time accidents happen about 68% of the time contrasted with 78% on weekends. If you are involved in an accident with a tractor trailer or other large commercial truck, contact an attorney for directions on how to proceed to resolve property damage and injury expenses.
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 500,00 truck accidents every year with approximately 5000 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.
Common reasons for trucking accidents start with action or inaction by a driver, an employer trucking company, a mechanic, a county or state government entity charged with maintaining roadways, manufacturers of truck components and mother nature. They can manifest as:
- Heavy or congested traffic
- Issues with brakes or hydraulics
- Roadway construction interrupting traffic flow
- Reckless driving through speeding
- Prescription drug use
- Unfamiliar roadways
- Traffic lights and crosswalks
- Over-the-counter medication
- Inadequate surveillance
- Driver distraction
Florida Statute 627.7415 State of Florida requirements are that motor vehicles must have current auto insurance coverage with a minimum requirement of $10,000 in personal injury protection (PIP) and $10,000 in property damage liability (PDL). Certain trucks and commercial vehicles in the State of Florida must carry bodily injury liability protection against claims for personal injuries for victims of a truck accident. The extra insurance is necessary when a truck is of a certain gross weight; has three or more axels, owned or driven by a governmental entity, is used for interstate versus intrastate travel and carries a load that may be considered hazardous.
Accident victims can file a personal injury claim in Florida, but under Florida’s No-Fault Insurance Law, costs incurred due to an accident will be paid primarily from a claim against the injured person’s own insurance company to cover non-serious injuries. The Florida No-Fault Law requires drivers to carry PIP to pay the insured’s bills, regardless of fault, up to the limit of the $10,000.
Civil litigation for expanded damages.
Extensive personal injuries, damage and wrongful death often result from accidents involving tractor trailers due to their increased size and weight over that of a passenger vehicle and could meet the serious injury threshold requirement, impacting monetary settlements between parties.
Determination of fault.
When a truck driver is found to be at fault for the accident, a separate legal claim can be lodged for more serious personal injuries and losses. Critical reasons truck drivers have been proven at fault include: driver incapacitated due to heart attack, seizure, falling asleep or another physical impairment; driver distraction; reckless driver; and poor driver performance.
Contact an attorney.
An experienced personal injury attorney at Larson Johnson Trial Attorneys can help you determine insurance claim or civil litigation actions, and navigate settlements to resolve damage costs to you.
Larson Johnson, P.L.
2011 West Cleveland Street
Tampa, Florida 33606