Driving alongside commercial tractor-trailers is a daily part of many Texas drivers' commutes. However, there are numerous blind spots around a truck, and often their drivers are not fully aware of them. Lack of awareness of blind spots can result in catastrophic and even fatal accidents. People in passenger cars, motorcyclists, bicyclists, and pedestrians bear the brunt of the harm when this happens. If you have been hurt by a careless trucker in the Dallas area, you can consult a truck accident attorney at Feizy Law Office. We can investigate the details of your case and help you explore your options.Holding a Negligent Driver or Trucking Company Accountable for Damages
One of the largest blind spots around a truck is directly behind it. A driver may not realize someone is driving just behind him or her. This means that if the trucker suddenly stops, the car that is following may end up under the big rig in what is called an "underride accident." These can be fatal or catastrophic events because the roof of the car is crushed, which is likely to lead to traumatic brain injuries, if not death.
Other blind spots include the right rear and the left rear sides. Truck drivers have mirrors, but they may not catch the far rear sides of the vehicle. It is not always possible to stay out of a blind spot.
If you are hurt in a truck accident, you can often sue not only the individual driver but also the trucking company that allowed him to use the vehicle or that employed him. This is because the injuries from these collisions can be catastrophic, and sometimes an individual driver's own insurance policy does not provide full compensation to a victim.
A truck driver's employer may be held directly or indirectly responsible for an accident, depending on the circumstances. Direct liability usually stems from negligent hiring, negligent training, or negligent supervision of a driver. All trucking companies are required to conduct background checks on their employees and make sure that they are properly trained.
For example, a commercial driver may have a record of multiple accidents, but a trucking company may employ him anyway due to a shortage of available drivers. When he switches lanes, crashing into a passenger vehicle and causing catastrophic injuries, the driver of the passenger vehicle may consider suing the truck driver for negligence and may also sue the trucking company for negligent hiring.
Even if the truck driver has no driving record or past conduct that should alert the trucking company that he presents a risk on the road, it can be held indirectly liable. Under the doctrine of respondeat superior, an employer can be held accountable for a victim’s damages if its employee was authorized to drive and was driving on the job to further the business of the trucking company. Its defense in that case may be to argue that the truck driver got into a blind spot accident while in between shifts.
A defendant’s insurers may try to blame an injured individual for traveling too long within blind spots. Texas follows a rule of modified comparative negligence, which means that an accident victim may be barred from recovering any damages if he or she was 51 percent or more at fault for a crash. If the injured person was at fault, but to a lesser extent, he or she can pursue damages proportionate to the defendant’s responsibility.Protect Your Rights after a Motor Vehicle Collision by Enlisting a Plano Attorney
If you are hurt in the Plano area by a careless trucker, you should retain a motor vehicle collision lawyer with experience suing commercial drivers and trucking companies. Most likely, you will be facing substantial medical bills, lost income, and significant pain and suffering. You should not trust the truck driver's insurer to help you out. Insurers for an at-fault party are usually looking for ways to reduce their insured's exposure. Call Feizy Law Office at (214) 651-8686 or set up a free consultation through our online form. We represent injured residents of Arlington, Fort Worth, Irving, and Garland, among other cities near Dallas.