If you have been in an accident with a truck on a New Jersey roadway, you may be wondering who will pay your medical costs and compensate you for the time you are out of work. While your insurance company may cover some costs, victims of truck accidents often suffer catastrophic injuries requiring a lifetime of care. In many cases, it is possible to hold a trucking company liable for your injuries in a New Jersey court.
Trucking companies have a duty to follow a large number of federal regulations. They owe this duty to everyone on the road. When they violate this duty, or otherwise take actions that make their trucks unsafe, they can be held liable for injuries they cause. This failure to meet a duty of safety is known as negligence.
Some of the forms of trucking company negligence that lead to New Jersey truck accidents include:
- Improper loading. When a truck is not loaded properly, the cargo can shift during transit. This weight shift can cause a truck to tip over or roll over. When a truck overturns, it can obstruct the roadway and cause a pileup.
- Failure to inspect and maintain equipment. A trucking company is responsible for making sure their trucks, trailer and other equipment are roadworthy. Regular maintenance must be performed and care must be taken to look for defects that could lead to an equipment failure on the road. When a truck is not properly maintained and a part breaks, the vehicle may become difficult to maneuver, causing an accident.
- Bad hiring practices. Companies must be sure that they hire operators with clean driving records and a history of following safety procedures. Drug and alcohol tests should also be performed to make sure that the driver does not operate a commercial vehicle under the influence of intoxicants.
- Encouraging drivers to violate hours of service rules. Truck drivers must follow very specific rules limiting how much they can work and ensuring that they get adequate rest. To save time and money, many trucking companies officially or unofficially instruct their drivers to violate these rules. In these cases, a trucking company can be liable for injuries caused by their driver.
At Seigel Law, our New Jersey truck accident attorneys focus on getting injury victims justice after a wreck. This means we will do whatever it takes to get you any recovery you are legally entitled to from a trucking company, a driver, an insurance company or a truck manufacturer. We serve clients in the Bergen County area. Call us today at 201.444.4000 or contact us online to plan a free initial consultation.