A Muskogee semi-truck accident case could result in a significantly higher settlement amount than a typical car crash case. A semi-truck is a much heavier vehicle than a car. When it is involved in an accident, the damage to property and injury to people may be significantly worse as compared to accidents involving other types of smaller vehicles.
Trucks are on the roads in Muskogee, Oklahoma every day. Being more massive, they are more challenging to control than cars. Trucks do deliveries every day to our homes, stores, and other places.
In an emergency, a truck may take longer than any smaller vehicle to stop. A semi-truck is more likely to be involved in accidents in situations where a smaller vehicle would maintain its control.
Statistics indicate that life loss and injuries arising from truck accidents are significant. According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA), 3,921 people died and 104, 000 others were injured in accidents involving large trucks (weighing over 10,000 pounds) in the United States in 2012.
Muskogee Semi-Truck Accident vs. Car Accident
Settlement valuation after an accident is determined by considering each unique case, each person’s injuries, and property damages. The purpose of tort damages is to restore the person injured as much as is possible in monetary terms to where they were before the accident.
Federal and state laws require semi-truck and other truck drivers to carry insurance with higher limits than other truck drivers. The higher insurance limits required for all types of trucks allow for higher settlements for personal injury and property damage claims. There are other federal and state regulations that drivers of trucks and semi-trucks are expected to adhere to, because they cause significantly more damage in the event of an accident.
However, the plaintiff claiming damages after a truck accident must prove that the truck driver was negligent and caused the accident. Sometimes, the negligence of a truck driver is easy to show — but not always.
For instance, a truck driver should act with due care and keep a reasonable distance with the vehicle ahead. If he is careless and the driver in front suddenly brakes, resulting in the truck rear-ending him, the truck driver could be found negligent.
Trucks do not only travel short distances, such as when delivering items from a local store to a home or office. Often truck drivers travel across states and other long distances. Thus, a driver could be on the road for hours. Regulations limit the number of hours a driver can be on the road without taking a break.
These regulations are designed to reduce the number of truck accidents that may arise out of driver exhaustion. In case of a truck or semi-truck accident, negligence becomes easier to prove if the driver has exceeded the stipulated number of hours that he should be on the road.
An exhausted truck driver who remains on the road exceeding mandated hours can face punitive damages. Such a truck driver is considered to have exposed the public to risk and opens himself up to punitive damages.
The possibility of being awarded punitive damages increases the settlement amount after a truck accident. If the truck driver has ingested drugs and alcohol, the risk to the public is considered higher.
Free Consultation: Muskogee Personal Injury Lawyer
To get help determining who is liable after an Oklahoma truck accident, contact a Muskogee personal injury attorney at Wirth Law Office — Muskogee today.
Our lawyer is experienced and knowledgeable and will guide you on the best way forward in your case.
For a free, no-obligation consultation, call 918-913-0725. You may also send your question using the email form on this page.