Brad Pistotnik Law
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Who Is Responsible for a Commercial Vehicle Settlement?

Who Is Responsible for a Commercial Vehicle Settlement?

Who is liable for paying a commercial vehicle settlement? Is it possible to prosecute multiple parties for their role in causing a large vehicle accident? The fact is that large truck accidents often involve a significant number of contributing factors. These can include manufacturing defects and design defects, as well as the negligence of a driver or trucking company. When multiple entities contribute to causing a crash, plaintiffs can pursue compensation from each party involved.

Factors that Cause Large Truck Accidents

In 2017, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recorded 4,889 fatal truck accidents involving trucks or buses. This was a 9% increase over 2016. That same year, the fatality rate per 100 million vehicle miles rose by 6.8%, which was one of the highest jumps on record. In all, there were 450,000 police-reported accidents involving large trucks.

Of these, more than 1,000 involved cargo loss or shifting cargo. 23% of large truck accidents were the result of drivers losing control over the movement of the vehicle, and contributing to this, a total of 5% of crashes involved vehicle-related factors such as defective brakes, tire blowouts, faulty steering systems, etc.

One reason for large vehicle accidents is the age of the truck or bus itself. Of the 4,657 fatal accidents in 2017, 2,431 of the vehicles were six years or older. However, 1,758 were 1 to 5 years old. This indicates that the lack of driver experience operating the vehicle contributes to accident risk.

Finally, 32% of accidents involved driver actions. The most common driver-related causes were speeding, distracted driving, aggressive driving, and driver fatigue. These negligent driving behaviors are entirely under the driver's control to correct and avoid. When they don't, the driver and their employer can be held liable by the courts for their negligence.

When Multiple Parties Are Responsible

When a commercial vehicle causes an accident, it is essential to determine the factors that caused the wreck. This establishes the parties that may have liability for the accident. If design defects or deficient construction contributed to causing the crash, the vehicle's manufacturer might be liable. If the vehicle was improperly loaded, the loader or shipper could be liable. Liability could fall on the truck's owner or operator if they failed to perform maintenance. Finally, the truck driver could be liable if they operated the vehicle negligently or recklessly, such as by driving drunk, driving while fatigued, speeding, etc.

Contact Brad Pistotnik Law at 1-800-241-BRAD or call us on our local line at 316-684-4400. We will help you determine which parties are liable for the accident and pursue a commercial vehicle settlement that will help you recover from your injuries. We represent clients pursuing personal injury claims in Kansas, Nebraska, Missouri, or Texas. Day or night, holidays or weekends, we are available to give you the answers you need. You can call Brad Pistotnik on his cell at 316-706-5020. You can reach Tony Atterbury on his cell at 316-617-9237.