According to a recent Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) report, there were 3,864 fatalities in the US in 2016 in accidents involving large trucks and 83% of those fatalities were not large truck occupants. In other words, of those 2016 large truck accident fatalities, 3,207 people who died were occupants in other vehicles that collided with the large trucks. And bringing it closer to home, in 2016 there were 556 large truck accident fatalities in Texas. Large trucks are defined by the FMCSA as weighing 10,000 pounds or more.
Semi-truck drivers and trucking companies are regulated by federal and Texas State regulations. There are regulations related to driver’s licensing, safety training requirements, safe freight loading standards, and vehicle maintenance requirements. There are also limits as to the hours and consecutive days that a truck driver may drive in an effort to cut back on driver fatigue. These regulations are intended to keep our Texas roadways and its drivers safe. If you or a loved one was injured in a semi-truck accident, contact the Law Office of Dorothy Hyde to consult with a Dallas truck accident attorney.
Causes of semi-truck accidents
A number of causes can contribute to a semi-truck accident including inclement weather, improper vehicle maintenance, limited maneuverability, truck driver negligence such as distracted driving and operating under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and driver fatigue. Due to their size (they can weigh up to 80,000 pounds) and design, semi-trucks involved in motor vehicle accidents can and do cause devastating injuries.
Recent Texas semi-truck cases
May 17, 2018 – A jury awarded $90M to truck accident plaintiffs. There was one fatality and multiple injuries suffered by occupants of a pickup truck that was struck by a semi-truck after the pickup truck hit a patch of black ice and spun into the path of the semi-truck. The truck driver was not speeding or charged with any wrongdoing by the police. The defendant truck company intends to appeal.
July 17, 2018 – A jury awarded $101M to a truck accident plaintiff. $75M of the award was for punitive damages. The truck driver was found to have marijuana and methamphetamines in his system. Additionally there was testimony that documents regarding the driver’s safety training had been falsified as well as allegations that the company did not follow its own safety policy in hiring the employee truck driver.
What do these two cases mean to you? They mean that Texas juries are not letting large trucks and trucking companies off the hook anymore. Juries are seeking to hold the trucking industry accountable for bad actions and practices in an effort to keep our Texas roadways safe.
Our Dallas truck accident attorneys will conduct a thorough investigation of your case by looking into the truck driver’s prior accidents and driving record as well as company records, obtaining accident video if it exists, accident reports, and witness statements. We’ve been through this many times and we will go the distance to see that you are fully compensated for your injuries. contact the Law Office of Dorothy Hyde to speak with someone today.