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By Marilyn Royce

The repercussions of a commercial truck accident can be daunting, leaving victims in an emotional whirlwind while grappling with the complexities of legal procedures. 

This guide aims to elucidate the steps you should take immediately after a truck accident to secure your rights and position yourself optimally for the legal battle ahead.

Achieving Composure After a Collision

Your first instinct after a truck accident might be to panic, but it’s paramount that you gather your bearings and act calmly. A clear-headed response can potentially prevent further harm and allow you to undertake the following steps more effectively.

Evaluate your health and check for any injuries. If you feel disoriented or in pain, try not to move excessively and wait for medical professionals to arrive.

If possible, assess the state of others involved in the accident. If anyone is severely injured, try not to move them unless absolutely necessary, as it might exacerbate their injuries.

Call Emergency Services

After ensuring your safety and all those involved, the next step should be calling 911 so the relevant authorities can respond to the scene. 

Once there, the police will need an accurate description of what happened. So, be sure to narrate the details accurately, and forget to include the time, location, and weather conditions. But you must refrain from admitting fault or speculating about the accident’s cause.

On top of determining who is at fault for the accident, the police will also dispatch emergency medical services.

Regardless of how minor your injuries might seem, it’s imperative to contact emergency health services promptly. Adrenaline can mask pain initially, and some injuries may only become apparent after a while.

Ensure that all your medical treatments and diagnoses are properly documented. This evidence will be pivotal when seeking compensation later.

Consult Houston Commercial Truck Accident Lawyers 

The legal intricacies surrounding truck accidents can make them notably different from standard car collision cases. So, if you are in stable condition, contact Houston commercial truck accident lawyers who can provide valuable guidance throughout the complex legal process that lies ahead. 

Determining liability in truck accidents can be complicated as various parties could be at fault. These parties may include the truck driver, the trucking company, the truck manufacturer, the cargo loading company, or even a third-party driver.

A competent truck accident attorney can help identify the liable party and build a robust case against them. 

Keep in mind that trucking companies and their insurers might rush to offer settlements. So, don’t sign any documents or accept any offers without consulting an attorney well-versed in the tactics employed by large trucking companies.

Gathering Critical Evidence

As soon as possible, try to find any witnesses who can provide an account of the accident. Their statements can significantly bolster your case.

Take photographs of the accident scene, including your vehicle, the truck, and any other damaged property. If possible, also capture the weather, road conditions, and any visible injuries.

Factors Contributing to Truck Accidents

Commercial truck accidents can be caused by a variety of factors, each contributing to the severity and complexities of these incidents. They include: 

  • Truck Physics: Trucks require significantly more distance than passenger vehicles to stop, posing risks during emergencies.
  • Driver Fatigue: Long hours on the road can lead to fatigue, negatively impacting a driver’s focus and reaction times.
  • Hours of Service: Regulations limit the number of hours a driver can operate a truck, but violations can lead to exhaustion and accidents.
  • Substance Abuse: Some truck drivers may use stimulants or depressants to manage long drives, which can impair their driving abilities.
  • Vehicle Defects: Faulty components or poor maintenance can lead to malfunctions, causing accidents.
  • Hazardous Freight: Trucks often transport dangerous materials, which can exacerbate the consequences of accidents.
  • Weather Conditions: Adverse weather can make driving large trucks particularly challenging, increasing the risk of accidents.
  • Negligence: Often, truck accidents are the result of negligence on the part of the truck driver or the trucking company. This could include hiring inexperienced drivers, inadequate training, poor equipment maintenance, overloading trucks, or encouraging illegal activities like falsifying logbooks or speeding.

In Summary

Accidents involving commercial trucks can be severely traumatic. However, understanding the steps to take post-accident can significantly augment your chances of securing the compensation you deserve. 

Remember, it’s always advisable to consult with Houston commercial truck accident lawyers to navigate the complexities of accident-related litigation.