Lafayette Semi-truck Accident Attorneys Help Victims Win Compensation
Experienced representation for injured motorists throughout Indiana
Indiana’s official motto is “the Crossroads of America.” The state lies at the junction of Interstates 65, 69, 70 and 74, which connect the major cities of the Midwest. Unfortunately, the crossroads can be a dangerous place. The heavy commercial traffic carried by these highways often leads to serious and sometimes deadly accidents. In 2017, Indiana had 16,910 crashes involving semi-trucks and other commercial vehicles, which resulted in 3,297 injuries and 152 fatalities. The vast majority of these accidents occurred on the interstates and other major arteries.
For more than 35 years, our firm has advocated for the rights of accident victims. If you are injured or a loved one is killed in a semi-truck crash anywhere in Indiana, Cooke Law Firm will work tirelessly to obtain the compensation your losses deserve.
What are the particular dangers posed by semi-trucks?
A truck is a single-unit vehicle in which the engine, cabin and storage bed are inseparable. This includes any kind of box truck or even a pickup truck. By contrast, a semi-truck has a tractor and a trailer, which can be disconnected. Semis go by many names, among them tractor-trailers, big rigs and 18-wheelers.
Semis have many advantages over other commercial trucks, such as greater load capacity and the ability to bend around corners for tighter turning. But these vehicles can be destructive and deadly in certain circumstances. The greater load requires a greater stopping distance and creates more force in a crash. The play between the tractor and trailer can cause the vehicle to jackknife, putting several lanes of vehicles in jeopardy with one broad sweep. For these reasons and more, semi-truck accidents are particularly dangerous.
The legal process in semi-truck accident cases
Winning damages for injuries suffered in any accident depends on establishing liability. When a semi-truck is involved, multiple individuals and companies may be at fault. Potentially responsible parties include:
- Truck drivers — Most truck accidents are caused by operator error. Aggressive driving and/or fatigued driving (often to meet demanding delivery schedules) can lead to costly mistakes. A driver who is an independent contractor may be held personally liable.
- Truck companies — Commercial carriers are heavily regulated but they often skirt the law, allowing drivers to work too many hours behind the wheel or putting equipment back on the road even after it has failed inspection. Trucking companies are legally responsible for the negligence of drivers they employ.
- Cargo shippers — Accidents can occur due to semi-trucks being overloaded or cargo being improperly balanced or secured, which can expose the shipper to liability.
- Manufacturers or maintenance providers — When accidents are caused by defective parts or equipment failures, such as blown tires or worn-out brakes, the companies that made or serviced these components could be liable.
- Government agencies — When poorly designed, constructed or maintained roads contribute to causing accidents, the government agency in charge of the road may be held to account.
In lawsuits claiming severe injury or wrongful death, these parties defend lawsuits aggressively, often accusing victims of negligence. To maximize the compensation you receive, you should only trust your case to an established law firm with a long track record of success.
We consult with certified accident reconstruction experts to help us determine causation, so we can hold the correct parties accountable. We also consult with experts in medicine and finance to fully understand the extent of your injuries and financial losses, so we can make an appropriate demand for damages.
Contact a trusted Indiana law firm for semi-truck accident representation
Cooke Law Firm in Lafayette represents injured victims of accidents involving semi-trucks throughout Indiana. We do everything possible under the law to obtain fair compensation for the damage you’ve suffered. To schedule a free initial consultation at our Lafayette office, call 765-423-5628 or contact us online.