Fatal Truck Accidents
18-Wheeler Crash Lawyers Serving Memphis and Surrounding Areas
Fatal truck accidents continue to be an issue in Tennessee and throughout the country. Per the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), 4,311 large trucks and buses were involved in fatal wrecks in 2015, representing an increase of 8% from 2014. In Tennessee alone, 962 people died in motor vehicle crashes in 2015. Following a fatal truck accident, many factors come into play. Sometimes the impact between the vehicles is so severe that the victim is killed upon impact, while other times the victim suffers in a weakened state for many months before succumbing to injuries caused by the collision. To speak with a Memphis truck accident attorney regarding your loved one’s passing, call Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz today. Our team includes 33 lawyers and over 120 support staff members, making us the largest plaintiff’s personal injury law firm based in Tennessee.
Pursuing Compensation for Wrongful Death After a Fatal Truck Accident
Those who have lost a loved one in a trucking accident may be able to file a claim for wrongful death. Consulting with an experienced truck accident attorney in this situation is crucial, as liability may rest with the truck driver, trucking company, or both. Thus, a proper investigation into the wreck is of utmost importance. Common allegations of fault in a fatal truck accident case include negligence of the truck driver. Negligent actions could include speeding, failing to maintain a safe lookout, and violating FMCSA regulations concerning hours of service or drug abuse. To prove a violation of a federal trucking regulation, it may be necessary to retain an expert to assist in the discovery process. It must then be established that the truck driver’s negligence caused the collision and the wrongful death.
Trucking companies are normally named as defendants in fatal truck accident lawsuits in the Memphis area or elsewhere in Tennessee. By law, large interstate trucking companies are required to carry significantly higher insurance limits than what individuals are required to carry under state law. Since wrongful death damages in a fatal truck accident case are usually considerable, proving the trucking company’s liability can make a difference in recovering adequate compensation or a fraction of the pecuniary life of the deceased. Elements of damages may include medical bills, lost wages (past and future), and loss of consortium.
If the truck driver was acting within the course and scope of employment at the time of the wreck, the trucking company may be vicariously liable for the driver’s negligence. However, if the driver had deviated from job duties, such as by running a personal errand, vicarious liability may not attach. There are ways in which the employer can be held directly liable in a fatal truck accident case. For example, employers must ensure the truck is adequately maintained and serviced when needed. Otherwise, negligent maintenance could be asserted if the wreck was caused by a mechanical defect in the truck. Negligent hiring is another potential cause of action, as interstate trucking companies must conduct sufficient background checks into drivers before hiring them.
Discuss Your Case with an Experienced Trucking Accident Attorney
If you have lost a loved one in a truck accident in Memphis or surrounding areas, call Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz. We may be able to assist you and other beneficiaries in recovering damages pursuant to Tennessee’s wrongful death statute. Our Memphis lawyers represent truck crash victims throughout Tennessee, Missouri, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Arkansas, including in Memphis, Nashville, Chattanooga, Knoxville, Caruthersville, Hayti, Oxford, Starkville, Grenada, Columbus, Tupelo, Meridian, Jackson, Little Rock, and Jonesboro. Contact our office by calling 800-529-4004 or by completing our online form for a free appointment with an auto accident attorney. Available 24/7, we look forward to showing you why NST is the way to go.