Since semi-trucks are so large and heavy, any type of crash involving them can have devastating consequences. Passenger cars, SUVs, and motorcycles are at a considerable disadvantage when a trucker makes a mistake, including an error executing a wide turn. If you have been hurt because of carelessness by a commercial driver, the experienced Pembroke Pines truck accident lawyers at Cohn & Smith can help you pursue compensation from those responsible.
Collisions involving commercial vehicles proceed under the law of negligence in much the same way that crashes between smaller vehicles do. In order to recover financial compensation for damages such as medical bills, lost wages, property damage, or pain and suffering, the injured party must make out a four-part case of negligence. In many situations, the trucking company or companies that owned the vehicle and employed the driver may also be named as defendants in an injured person’s lawsuit.Pursing Compensation through a Negligence Claim Following a Careless Wide Turn
The term “negligence” refers to a situation in which a person or business failed to act in the way that a reasonable and prudent person or business would have acted in the same situation. Sometimes, this means that a defendant did something in particular, such as greatly exceeding the speed limit or texting while driving. In other situations, it could mean that a certain thing was not done that a reasonable and prudent person or business would have done, such as providing instruction and training in a particular driving maneuver.
The initial step of any negligence lawsuit is proving duty. A duty is an obligation or standard of conduct that one party owes to another. The second step of a negligence case is showing that the defendant breached the duty that was owed to the victim. A breach of duty means that the defendant failed to meet the appropriate legal obligation to the plaintiff. Third, there must be a showing of causation such that the defendant’s breach of the duty owed to the plaintiff actually resulted in the accident. The plaintiff also must show that he or she incurred quantifiable damages as a result.
Once the four basic elements of negligence are proven by a preponderance of the evidence by the person seeking to recover compensation, the next question becomes the amount to which he or she may be entitled. Compensatory damages may include payment of past and future medical expenses, lost wages and loss of future earning capacity, property damage, and pain and suffering. If the defendant is able to show that the plaintiff was partially at fault in the accident, the plaintiff’s damages may be reduced in proportion to his or her fault under the comparative fault doctrine.
Truckers have a duty under the law to operate their 18-wheelers as safely as possible, including the proper execution of wide turns and swinging turns. Trucking companies also have obligations under the law, including:
- Properly training drivers;
- Making sure loads are safely secured;
- Ensuring that equipment is in proper working order; and
- Allowing truckers to have adequate periods of rest.
If a truck driver or trucking company has breached a duty and you have been hurt as a result, you should not hesitate to enlist an attorney who can stand up for your right to justice and compensation. A delay in hiring counsel can lead to spoliation of evidence, missed filing deadlines, and other issues that can reduce or eliminate your recovery.Consult a Pembroke Pines Lawyer after a Motor Vehicle Collision
If you are hoping to hold a negligent truck driver or trucking company accountable for your injuries after a Florida crash involving a wide turn, call the law firm of Cohn & Smith today. Our injury lawyers have assisted many residents of Pembroke Pines and other South Florida cities. We welcome the chance to serve your family’s legal needs. To schedule a free appointment with an attorney to discuss your case, you can call us at 954-431-8100 or complete our online form. We also represent individuals in cities such as Weston, Hollywood, and Davie.