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Charleston, WV Truck Accident Attorney

Charleston Truck Accident Lawyer

With rolling hills and stunning vistas, there’s no denying that Charleston, West Virginia is a beautiful place to visit or live. But with its beauty comes danger. Nestled in the confluence of major Routes 77, 64, and 119, our city sees its fair share of large trucks daily.

According to 2021 data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were 42 large trucks involved in fatal traffic crashes in West Virginia, resulting in 45 deaths of occupants of the trucks and other people (including both occupants of other vehicles and nonoccupants).

Collisions with trucks are often catastrophic and deadly and leave those involved and their loved ones seeking answers in the aftermath.

Our knowledgeable Charleston, WV truck accident lawyers at Dipiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC have extensive experience with accidents just like yours, so don’t hesitate to reach out to our legal team for a free consultation.

Types of Trucks in Charleston

Due to its placement at the meeting of the Elk and Kanawha Rivers, Charleston sees a large amount of commercial traffic. These are just a few of the most common trucks seen driving our roads every day:

  • Delivery trucks
  • Tractor-trailers
  • Water trucks
  • Logging trucks
  • Coal trucks
  • Oil & gas trucks

This list is not exhaustive and our office is equipped to handle any truck accident case no matter the type of truck involved.

Common Causes of Semi-Truck Collisions

Similarly to many other vehicle accidents, collisions involving trucks are often caused due to driver error. However, there could be any number of reasons that a large truck causes an accident, such as:

  • Truck driver error: Driver negligence such as distracted or fatigued driving or driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol are all top contributors to large truck accidents.
  • Overloaded or improperly loaded trucks: Truck drivers are responsible for the loads they transport, and if those loads are too heavy, or not properly secured, it could lead to these large vehicles overturning and causing catastrophic accidents.
  • Poorly maintained trucks: According to both state and federal regulations, large trucks such as tractor-trailers are required to be properly maintained and inspected regularly, if any part of a truck is defective, it may lead to a collision.
  • Hours of service violations: The FMCSA has regulations in place for truckers that limit the amount of time drivers can be behind the wheel without taking a break. Often truck drivers will push the limits of or altogether ignore break these regulations which may result in driver errors.
  • Poorly maintained roadways: Road maintenance is just as important as truck maintenance. When roads have potholes or uneven surfaces, it can cause a truck to swerve into an adjacent lane and an accident may occur.

Most Dangerous Roads in Charleston

As mentioned previously, there are a number of major highways and intersections within the Charleston city limits. This leads to heavy commercial traffic on our roads and higher chances of collisions with large trucks.

Some of the most dangerous roads where a lot of accidents occur are:

  • I-64
  • I-77
  • I-79
  • US 119
  • US 60
  • Kanawha Blvd
  • MacCorkle Avenue & WV 61

Truck Accident Injuries Our Office Sees

Due to the immense size and weight of large trucks, it’s no wonder that accidents involving these vehicles result in devastating injuries and damage. Smaller passenger vehicles that collide with a semi-truck weighing up to 80,000 pounds are often left beyond repair and the victims suffer serious injuries such as:

  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Internal organ damage or bleeding
  • Fractured or broken bones
  • Spinal cord injuries (including paralysis or paraplegia)
  • Neck injuries
  • Burn injuries
  • Scarring or disfigurement
  • Crush injuries (including amputations)
  • Wrongful death

Steps You Should Take After Your Truck Accident

Depending on the severity of your truck accident, you may not be able to get out of your vehicle or gather information from other drivers involved in the wreck.

However, if you are able to do so, you should try to follow as many of these steps as you can to ensure you have a more solid case against the at-fault driver:

  • Contact local authorities: No matter how minor your truck accident may seem, it’s best to call 9-1-1 and request law enforcement as well as emergency medical services to your location. The police will help to clear the scene and they will make an official report which may be tantamount to your case.
  • Gather evidence: If it’s possible, you should take as many pictures and even video of the scene of your accident, including the vehicles involved, road conditions, property damage, physical injuries, and any other factors that may have contributed to the collision.
  • Exchange information: All drivers involved in the wreck should exchange contact information, including names, phone numbers, insurance information, driver’s license information, license plates, the trucking company and/or employer.
  • Collect witness statements: You should get the contact information of anyone who saw the accident happen. Even if the police take down their statements, your lawyer may want to as well and will need a way to get in touch with them.
  • Seek medical attention: It’s in your best interest to always see a doctor after any vehicle collision, no matter how minor your injuries may appear to be. Often serious injuries don’t show right away and you could suffer from internal damage that only a thorough examination will uncover.
  • Get legal assistance: Truck accidents are notoriously complex as there is not only a driver, but often an employer, shipping company, or manufacturer also involved in the case. A qualified truck accident lawyer from Dipiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC has the experience to handle your case and fight for the compensation owed to you.

By following these steps to the best of your ability, or getting your passenger to do so, you will have more evidence and more information for your attorney and your car insurance company.

Our lawyers have the experience necessary to take care of your case, but the more information you can give us at your initial consultation will only benefit your case.

Who Can Be Held Responsible for Your 18-Wheeler Collision?

Unlike other vehicle collisions, when an accident involving a semi-truck occurs, it’s often not only the truck driver who can be held responsible for your injuries and damage. Several individuals or organizations play a part in the operation of trucks and any or all of them could be held liable for your accident.

Truck drivers: If the driver was driving recklessly, distracted, or under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you can file an insurance claim directly with their insurer.

Trucking companies: The company that employs the driver or owns the truck could be held liable if they failed to complete proper background checks, provide adequate training, or schedule regular vehicle inspections and maintenance.

Manufacturers: Defective parts could play a major part in truck accidents if a manufacturer made and sold brakes that failed, tires that caused a blowout, etc.

Truck mechanics: Repairs and proper maintenance are imperative to having a properly functioning vehicle and if the mechanics who work on a truck are negligent in their repairs, they could be held liable for any accident that occurs.

Loading companies: Often truck companies hire third parties to load or unload the cargo on their trucks and if the accident was caused due to cargo being overloaded or improperly secured, the loading company could be held liable.

Typical Compensation for Victims of Truck Crashes

You may be wondering how much compensation you can receive from your truck accident and the quick answer is, it depends. Every accident and every case is different and your lawyer will likely inform you that there is no way to know how much compensation you’ll be awarded until the time it is awarded to you.

However, your lawyer will be able to inform you of the typical economical and non-economical damages that truck accident victims are compensated for:

  • All current and future medical expenses relating to your crash
  • Current and future lost wages
  • Physical therapy or rehabilitation
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional or psychological anguish (such as PTSD)
  • Lost earning capacity
  • Loss of consortium
  • Temporary or permanent disability
  • Loss of limb
  • Property damage
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Wrongful death benefits for surviving family members

West Virginia law allows victims of truck accidents or other personal injury claims to seek damages due to another person’s negligence. Your attorney can help to evaluate and calculate all of the injuries and damages you sustained during your accident to ensure you receive the maximum compensation owed to you.

Why You Should Hire a Charleston, WV Truck Accident Lawyer

There is no law stating you must have a lawyer in order to pursue a personal injury case against a negligent party. However, claims such as truck accidents often become very complex very quickly and it is in the best interest of the success of your case to reach out to a qualified legal professional.

Your lawyer will be able to:

  • Obtain all necessary evidence pertaining to your case
  • Handle negotiations with insurance carriers or the trucking company
  • Ensure that you receive proper medical care and your injuries are thoroughly documented
  • Determine the costs of your injuries
  • Ensure you receive the compensation you are owed

Not only will your attorney assist you with the previously mentioned list, but they will also ensure that your case is filed within the two-year West Virginia statute of limitations for personal injury claims.

It’s imperative to the success of your case that you don’t wait to reach out to legal experts.

Truck accidents are catastrophic and costly and leave victims and their families demanding answers.

You shouldn’t have to pay for the negligent actions of truck drivers so reach out to our Charleston team at DiPiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC today for your free consultation.

The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice. Viewing does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Prior case results do not guarantee a similar outcome.
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