At Colson Hicks Eidson, our truck accident attorneys have achieved national recognition for our work, which includes multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements for truck accident victims. As a result of our work, both nationally and internationally, our lawyers have been appointed to serve as lead co-counsels for highly publicized class actions and multi-district litigation (MDL) cases. These include the Ford-Firestone MDL for auto defects increasing the risk of SUV rollovers. Our experience allows us to fully investigate complex cases, such as serious and fatal truck accident claims. These kinds of cases require prompt action as well as the resources to hire experts and obtain all relevant evidence.
Semi drivers must follow strict trucking safety federal guidelines that restrict the number of hours they may spend behind the wheel. However, many drivers falsify their logbooks and stay on the road far longer than legally allowable. The result is that many truck drivers may be fatigued, placing all other drivers at risk for injuries in a wreck. In many cases, pressure from the trucking company, or even outright collusion, contributes to this dangerous practice. Our attorneys work with experts and have experience tracking down truck drivers’ logbooks, which the trucking company may try to conceal. If we find violations, as is often the case, then we can use these logbooks as evidence in your favor.
Our truck accident attorneys have attained a reputation for success in complex catastrophic injury and wrongful death claims involving semi truck crashes. In one such case, our law firm represented a wrongful death claim on behalf of two college-age siblings who lost their parents in a fatal truck accident. The truck was a gas tanker, and the driver was speeding at the time of the crash. The driver lost control, and the truck rolled over onto the victims’ car before exploding.
A thorough investigation by Colson Hicks Eidson partner Deborah J. Gander revealed that the company paid the driver by the load. This incentivized speeding and other trucking safety violations, like working extra hours. In the end, we obtained a settlement of $11 million for the victims’ children, which was the limit of the insurance policy held by the trucking company.
Drowsy driving poses a serious danger, especially when the driver controls a large, heavy vehicle like a commercial truck. Therefore, federal trucking regulations place strict limits on how long a truck driver may work before resting. These restrictions include limits on consecutive driving hours and cumulative hours in a seven- or eight-day period. By law, truck drivers must keep a log of the time they spend behind the wheel. This includes hours spent driving between locations plus time spent picking up or unloading cargo and getting necessary safety inspections.
However, in some cases, trucking companies pressure drivers to work longer hours than legally allowable. This can take the form of outright demands, or may be subtle, such as unrealistic deadlines or unscrupulous incentives. Either way, the result is that some truck companies falsify their logbooks, recording untrue travel times and rest periods. Then, fatigue increases the risk of serious truck accidents.
Our truck accident attorneys take steps to obtain the driver’s logbook after a crash and have experience proving falsification. Warning signs like impossibly short travel times between distant locations or missing information is strong evidence of falsification, indicating driver drowsiness and possibly recklessness. In these cases, victims may be able to seek additional damages due to excessive driver and trucking company negligence.
Truck accidents commonly result in permanent, disabling injuries or wrongful death, and may take years to fully investigate and litigate. Our truck accident attorneys offer aggressive representation for victims and their families. We also work on a contingency fee basis, which means you pay nothing up front and only owe attorney fees if we successfully resolve your case. We have an office in Miami, Florida, but we accept cases throughout the country. If you need assistance after a truck crash anywhere nationwide, contact the attorneys at Colson Hicks Eidson today.