Knoxville Delivery Truck Accidents
Delivery trucks travel throughout Knoxville and the surrounding areas each day, transporting materials, dropping off goods, delivering food, and more. Sometimes, these drivers face tight deadlines, which makes them feel the need to speed or take other action to make the delivery as quickly as possible. Being under pressure and acting too quickly can lead to unwanted results, such as a delivery truck accident. If you have been hurt in a crash with a big rig or commercial vehicle, call our Knoxville truck accident attorneys to assess your situation and advise you of your legal rights. Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz is the largest Tennessee-based plaintiff’s personal injury law firm, and we are ready to discuss how we may be able to help you through this difficult period.
Injuries Caused by Truck Accidents with Delivery Drivers
Delivery truck accidents can be more complex than typical auto accidents due to the increased number of parties involved. There can be multiple defendants, including the driver, employer, and a subsidiary of the employer. Thus, unique legal issues may present themselves which require a detailed and thorough investigation by an experienced attorney.
Under Tennessee law, a truck accident victim will need to prove negligence in order to recover compensation for medical bills, lost wages (past or future), pain and suffering, and other losses. Proving negligence usually means demonstrating the defendant did not act reasonably under the circumstances or violated a safety law or statute, thereby causing the collision. If a delivery driver was acting in the course and scope of his employment when the wreck occurred, the company may be vicariously liable for the driver’s negligence. In an attempt to avoid responsibility, the company may argue the driver was just an independent contractor, which could get them off the hook. A lawyer who regularly handles truck accident cases in Knoxville understands that the employer’s classification is not always determinative. Instead, a court can conduct its own analysis based on several factors to make the ultimate conclusion.
In your case, facts could emerge suggesting the company itself was negligent as well. For example, per regulations set forth by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), interstate trucking companies must conduct sufficient background checks before hiring a driver. If it turns out that a driver had a history of DUI offenses or reckless driving charges, but the company went ahead and hired him anyway, they could be liable for negligent hiring if that driver crashes into another car or person while intoxicated.
In many commercial vehicle or 18-wheeler crashes, the resulting injuries are severe, such as traumatic brain injury, paralysis, or multiple broken bones. Catastrophic cases may result in wrongful death. When your life changes forever due to permanent injuries or if you have lost a loved one, an experienced Knoxville lawyer can advocate for your rights and help you pursue all damages to which you are entitled under Tennessee law. Damages that may be recovered include, but are not limited to, medical bills previously incurred, estimated cost of future medical treatment, lost wages, diminished future earning capacity, scarring, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life. After reviewing your case, your attorney will be able to help devise a strategy to pursue your losses.
When a truck is involved in an accident in the Knoxville area, the truck driver is much less likely to be harmed than people in passenger cars who are involved. Tennessee truck accident statistics bear out this fact. In 2014, there were 100 fatalities in crashes involving large trucks in the state, but only 14 of these were truck drivers. Five of those who died were people outside conventional vehicles who lacked the structural protections of cars or trucks. Due to their fast-paced schedules, drivers may be rushing down US-225, US-441, University Avenue, or another street to make a delivery, failing to account for the safety of those around them. Knox County residents should try to hold them liable when a crash occurs.
Retain a Knoxville Attorney Following a Delivery Truck Accident
If you were hit by a truck or delivery van, the only way to recover for your losses may be to assert a personal injury claim. Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz can help victims navigate the legal process and stand up to large corporations who try to minimize the injury claims of innocent drivers and passengers in the Knoxville area. Contact our office by calling 800-529-4004 or by completing our online form to set up a free consultation.