Experienced Louisville Truck Accident Lawyer
The Crash Changed Your Life. Take Action Today
You see trucks every day on the Dixie Highway, Interstate 65, the Henry Watterson Expressway and other roads in and around Louisville. You might grip the steering wheel a little tighter when a big rig passes you, but you don't expect to be involved in a serious accident. Unfortunately, Louisville truck accident attorney Aaron Whaley knows crashes involving passenger vehicles and commercial trucks happen all too often in Kentucky.
Truck wrecks are among the most catastrophic types of accidents we handle at the Whaley Law Firm. That's because, given the size and weight of big rigs and the significant forces involved in a truck crash, accident victims often sustain serious and potentially life-threatening injuries. Contact the Whaley Law Firm today. We're here to help you. Call our office at 866-703-7575 for a free case evaluation with an experienced Louisville truck accident attorney.
- Why Do I Need an Attorney for my Truck Accident Case?
- Semi-Truck Accidents
- Why the Trucking Company May Be Responsible
- Types of Injuries in Truck Accidents
- Truckers and Distracted Driving
- Truck Accident FAQ
A truck accident may involve a tractor-trailer, 18-wheeler, delivery van or any other type of large commercial vehicle. Truck drivers are required to follow laws to ensure they keep all others on the road safe. Trucking companies are required to adhere to numerous federal standards to ensure that only qualified, licensed drivers are hired to operate well-maintained vehicles. When these drivers and companies take shortcuts to put profits ahead of people, they may be liable for causing a serious truck accident in Kentucky.
Our firm is familiar with the most common contributing factors in truck accidents. This knowledge, combined with our understanding of state and federal law, means we know how to get results for clients. We know how to investigate trucking companies and get to the bottom of what happened. We’re familiar with the arguments that truck drivers, trucking companies and insurance providers try to make after an accident. We’ve seen over and over again how badly victims can suffer because the trucking companies refuse to put safety first, putting profits ahead of people.
That’s why we work so hard on behalf of truck accident victims to hold negligent parties accountable. We leave no stone unturned on behalf of those injured due to someone else’s reckless behavior.
We’re firmly in your corner, start to finish
When you contact us after a truck accident, we’ll listen to your story and explain your legal options. If you hire us, we’ll deal with the trucking company and the insurance companies on your behalf, leaving you free to focus on getting better. We pore over accident reports and review insurance policies to maximize the coverage available to you. Our legal team takes a hard line in negotiations, and we’re always ready to go to trial, because we understand this is about your future.
Throughout the process, we’ll answer your questions, address your concerns, and make sure you’re prepared for the next stage. You were there. You know what happened. We will help you tell your story and fight to hold the trucking company accountable.
Remember, it’s important to take action immediately, before the trucking company can destroy critical evidence. The sooner an attorney intervenes and starts an independent investigation, the better off you are. Don’t go up against a trucking company on your own. Schedule your free consultation with an experienced truck accident lawyer.
Why Do I Need an Attorney for my Truck Accident Case?
It's the type of case that seems particularly unfair: you've been injured or a loved one has been injured or died after being struck by a tractor-trailer, semi-truck or 18-wheeler. But while you have every right to expect the trucking company and its insurance company to pay medical bills and other accident-related damages, you may find that getting justice can be a difficult process when it comes to trucking companies and their insurance carriers.
At the Whaley Law Firm, our Louisville truck accident attorneys have experience representing people seriously injured in truck accidents across Kentucky. Proving fault can be difficult after a Kentucky truck accident. A distracted, fatigued or drunk driver may deny any wrongdoing. A trucking company may hide or even destroy evidence that proves their negligent behavior contributed to a crash. The insurance company may try to delay or even deny your claim. You shouldn't have to foot the bill for somebody else's negligent or reckless behavior.
When you've done nothing wrong, it's critical to speak with an attorney who will put your needs first. The Whaley Law Firm is ready to help. Assisted by professional accident investigators, our firm examines all trucking company records, collects evidence from the scene of your accident and pores over medical and police records that reveal how your accident happened and the long-term cost of your injuries. That way, we can go after the compensation you need to get life back on track after an accident.
Kentucky's highways are an important part of the nation's interstate trucking routes and semi-trucks are a familiar sight across the state, making accidents involving trucks common for people who share those roads with such large vehicles. Many differences exist between accidents involving two cars crashing and a driver being involved in a semi-truck accident. At the Whaley Law Firm, we understand that semi-truck accidents are rarely minor.
What makes semi-truck accidents so dangerous in Kentucky? When fully loaded with cargo, a 50-plus foot long semi-truck can weigh up to 80,000 pounds. Semi-trucks carrying so much weight can quickly become more difficult to control if a driver isn't aware and alert at all times. A semi-truck may be unable to stop if trucking companies fail to properly maintain the truck or if a trucker or third-party overloads the trailer, thus placing a strain on the truck itself.
Semi-truck accident injuries can be devastating, requiring long-term hospitalization and resulting in steep medical bills and an inability to return to work. When such a large vehicle crashes into a 5,000-pound passenger vehicle, it's common for accident victims to sustain catastrophic head and spinal cord injuries, broken bones and fractures and other serious injuries. A loved one may even suffer a wrongful death as a result of accident-related injuries.
When dealing with the long-term costs associated with a semi-truck accident, an attorney can launch a thorough investigation into the truck driver and trucking company responsible for the truck. We can investigate "black box" information and other data that may reveal fault for an accident. We'll obtain medical and police records to determine fault in your accident and the long-term costs associated with your accident.
Why the Trucking Company May Be Responsible
Determining fault in a truck accident can be complex. In a commercial vehicle accident, the driver might be liable, but other parties may share some of the responsibility. In some instances, a trucking company may have contributed to the accident. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulates the commercial trucking industry. But that doesn't mean trucking companies are willing to adhere to safety and maintenance standards.
The Whaley Law Firm understands how difficult life can become after a truck accident in Kentucky. That's why we take a hard line against negligent trucking companies that may be partially or even fully at fault for an accident. When a truck company doesn't adhere to standards designed to keep other drivers on the road safe, that company needs to be held accountable.
Trucking companies are required to keep many different types of records. They must be able to prove that their fleet of vehicles is properly maintained and free of potentially hazardous safety issues, such as defective brakes or tires. Furthermore, trucking companies are required to hire skilled, trained drivers and ensure they follow important rules such as the FMCSA's Hours of Service regulations that limit the amount of hours a trucker can spend on the road each week.
In Kentucky, contributing factors in truck collisions include the following, which can be traced back to a negligent trucking company:
- Failure to properly secure a load
- Tire failure
- Defective brakes
- Oversized load on a vehicle
- Defective tow hitch, resulting in separation of units
- Overweight trucks, which can lead to brake failure or an out-of-control truck
- Steering failure
- Defective headlights
In many truck accidents, the trucking company and its insurance carrier will launch an immediate investigation to look for ways to minimize liability. Their investigators often are at the scene within hours of a crash. That's one of the reasons why it's critical to contact Louisville truck accident attorney Aaron Whaley as soon as possible.
At the Whaley Law Firm, we have the experience and resources necessary to thoroughly investigate your truck accident. We'll investigate driver safety records and qualifications. We can obtain maintenance records kept by the trucking company. We'll take a close look at the hiring, training and supervising practices of the trucking company. If a trucking company was responsible for your accident, we'll fight to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries.
Types of Injuries in Truck Accidents
Truck accident injuries are rarely minor. When a passenger vehicle, motorcycle, bicyclist or pedestrian is struck by a truck at any speed, the results can be catastrophic. A truck wreck can result in injuries ranging from broken bones to paralysis or brain damage. In many cases, a truck driver walks away facing only minor injuries, while the occupants of a car involved in a rear-end crash, head-on collision or intersection accident are taken away from the crash by ambulance.
In short, truck accidents often cause devastating, life-altering injuries, including the following types of injuries:
If you or a loved one was injured or you lost a loved one in a truck accident, you may be entitled to compensation for a variety of losses. The Whaley Law Firm may be able to pursue a number of different types of damages, including medical bills, loss of earnings, pain and suffering and other types of benefits. A truck company or insurance company may try to pressure you to accept a settlement before the true cost of your accident is known. Don't let them push you around. We can help.
Truckers and Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is a menace on our roads under any circumstances, but it’s an order of magnitude worse when the distracted driver is behind the wheel of an 80,000-pound tractor-trailer. You would think professional truck drivers would put a high priority on attentiveness, but unfortunately, too many are tempted to text and drive or otherwise drive distracted. In part, that’s because truckers spend long hours on the road and are under extreme pressure from the trucking companies to keep their trucks in motion, so if they need to do something, they may do it while driving and divide their attention.
In general, there are three types of distraction behind the wheel:
- Visual distraction, or taking eyes off the road. Truck drivers may be visually distracted by a GPS device, reading paperwork, using an electronic device, or simply looking away from the road to grab an object inside the cab.
- Manual distraction, or taking hands off the wheel. This may include adjusting the radio, eating and drinking, or texting.
- Cognitive distraction, or taking the mind off the task of driving. Talking to a dispatcher or using a cell phone creates a cognitive distraction, but so does simply being lost in thought or worried about work or personal matters.
Texting truckers are especially dangerous because the act of composing or reading a text message involves all three types of distraction, but no distraction is completely safe. That’s why strict federal regulations enforced by the Federal Motor Carrier and Safety Administration (FMCSA) restrict what truck drivers are allowed to do behind the wheel. It’s also why trucking companies have a legal responsibility to train and supervise their drivers to ensure that they operate their vehicles safely.
Unfortunately, too many trucking companies and truck drivers fail to address the dangers of distracted driving, and serious accidents can follow. When that happens, we hold them accountable.