Alabama Truck Accident Attorneys
Fighting for clients injured in tractor-trailer crashes throughout the state
Eighteen-wheelers, tractor-trailers, big rigs, semis: when large commercial trucks collide with passenger vehicles, it can have devastating consequences. If you have lost a loved one in a truck accident, or if you have sustained a serious injury and you are considering pursuing compensation for your injuries, an experienced Alabama truck accident lawyer from Mezrano Law Firm is ready to represent you. We offer a free initial consultation, and you never pay attorney fees until we have recovered compensation for you.
Primary cause of all crashes with truck involvement
Involving large commercial trucks, which was 3.4% of the
total number of accidents that year.
Catastrophic injuries from truck accidents
You can expect that a 20-to-40-ton vehicle is going to cause serious injuries in a truck accident. The following are some examples of the catastrophic injuries that people who survive a truck wreck might sustain:
- Head, back and neck injuries, which are far more serious in vehicle occupants who were not wearing a seat belt.
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI) which is caused by the violent thrust of the soft, malleable brain inside the front and back of the skull from the g-forces in the crash. This collision of the brain within the skull is a closed-head injury which damages brain cells and crushes vital connections causing long-term injury and disability.
- Spinal cord injury/paralysis can occur from trauma to the delicate structures of the spine. The location of the impact will determine the completeness of the resulting paralysis.
- Burn injuries can be devastating when a fire breaks out from spilled fuel that ignites.
- Broken and crushed bones from the tremendous impact which can cause permanent disability.
- Internal organ damage such as a lacerated liver or kidney damage.
Why are tractor-trailer accidents so severe?
A commercial truck is a huge machine with a massive size difference between it and a typical passenger car. When two passenger vehicles are following too closely and one rear-ends the other, it may result in a fender bender; the same crash between a large commercial truck and a passenger vehicle could have much more serious consequences such as serious injury and fatalities.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has an infographic that shows the safety challenges presented by the massive size differences between a commercial truck, an average passenger car, and a bicycle. The FMCSA shares these facts to help illustrate the large blind spots, longer stopping distances and the limited maneuverability of a 40-ton vehicle.
The mass of a truck increases the risk of more severe crash damage, injuries and fatalities for a few reasons:
- The large weight of the truck makes it more challenging to steer, handle, accelerate and stop;
- Trucks accelerate slowly going uphill and may gain speed quickly going downhill;
- Tall trucks have a higher center of gravity, roll over more easily, and must go more slowly around curves and on ramps;
- Large trucks can generate wind gusts that can push smaller vehicles into other lanes; and
- Smaller vehicles can be pushed or pulled under a commercial vehicle with high ground clearance.
What causes truck accidents?
There are many factors that contribute to causing a truck crash, but most can be attributed to driver error (and not always the truck driver's error). Drunk or drugged driving, using a cell phone, speeding or reckless driving behavior, fatigue: all of these can lead to a crash.
There are additional factors which can lead to a truck accident including mechanical or environmental factors such as:
- Defective truck parts such as tires, brakes, steering systems
- Insufficient training
- Overloaded truck/unbalanced load
- Improper truck maintenance
- Tough quotas and tight deadlines
Facts about big rigs
It is easier to understand how a tractor-trailer can cause so much damage when you understand their size, weight, and how they work. Following are some interesting questions and answers about trucks:
- How big is a tractor-trailer? A tractor-trailer can be up to 80 feet long, depending on the size of the cab, and as much as 13 feet tall. A typical 18-wheeler weighs in at about 80,000 pounds, or four tons. In comparison, a passenger car weighs about 5,000 pounds. What happens when a 20 or 40 ton truck hits a 1 ton truck or car? You guessed it – the 18 wheeler wins.
- What is the turning radius of an 18-wheeler? The average turning radius of a semi-truck is around 50 feet. Trucks always need more room to turn than it appears, especially when turning right.
- How long does it take to stop a big rig? A truck going 55mph takes the length of two football fields to come to a complete stop, which is 40% greater than that of an automobile. This can take even longer depending on the amount of cargo, road conditions, or the truck’s brakes.
- What is jackknife accident? When a truck’s trailer starts sliding, it moves faster than the wheels of the cab, and can come at the cab at a 45-degree angle – much like an open jackknife. These accidents can be particularly dangerous.
- What is “bobtailing?” Bobtailing is when a truck cab drives without the trailer attached. It might appear this is safer, but bobtailing can be risky, as trailers provide traction and stabilizing weight for the cab.
How can an Alabama truck wreck attorney help me?
When two passenger vehicles get into a car accident, the insurance company for the at-fault driver pays for the property damage, medical expenses and other damages. But an accident with a commercial vehicle is a more complicated situation. There may be several defendants including the truck driver, the trucking company, a maintenance vendor, or the manufacturer of a defective part and each of these will involve different insurance companies.
An Alabama truck accident lawyer from Mezrano Law Firm has experience handling the complexity of investigating a commercial truck accident, knowing what evidence to request, and how to determine fault and hold those responsible for the accident accountable.
What if I can't afford to hire a truck accident lawyer?
At Mezrano Law Firm, we take injury cases on contingency. This means that we get paid our attorney fees as a percentage of the total settlement or verdict amount. We also offer you a free initial consultation which will allow you to discuss your case with one of our experienced Alabama truck accident attorneys and receive feedback about your case.
If we decide to work together, our firm will advance the costs of your case, which allows you to receive experienced representation without the requirement to pay a costly retainer. This arrangement also creates a powerful incentive for our Alabama truck accident lawyers to fight hard to recover the maximum compensation available for you.
The Alabama truck accident lawyers you want to work with after a serious injury
Truck accident injuries are often devastating. At Mezrano Law Firm, we are here to fight for you, to win the compensation you need so that you can get back to your life. With offices in Birmingham, Mobile, Florence, Montgomery, Gadsden, and Tuscaloosa, we are here to serve you. You can call 205-206-6300 or fill out our contact form and schedule your free initial consultation with an experienced Alabama truck accident lawyer.
If you have a case, you have a lawyer. Call us today to learn more.