Charlotte, NC Truck Accident Attorneys
Skilled advocacy for victims of commercial truck crashes throughout North Carolina
When you’re commuting to work, school, or running errands, chances are you’ll be driving near a commercial motor vehicle (CMV). Commercial vehicles and trucks travel the highways in and around Charlotte daily. These vehicles play a crucial role in not only the economy of this city, but also all of North Carolina and the United States. However, large commercial trucks can lead to significant injuries in the event they are involved in an accident with other, smaller vehicles.
At Price, Petho & Associates, our knowledgeable team is here to help when you need a Charlotte truck accident attorney by your side. If the actions of a truck driver or trucking company have caused you harm, we will work to secure full compensation for your losses. We have the resources necessary to handle every aspect of these types of claims, and we know what it takes to help clients recover complete compensation for their losses.
What would you like to know?
How common are Charlotte commercial truck accidents?
North Carolina Department of Transportation (NC DOT) data from 2020 shows a significant number of commercial motor vehicle accidents here in Mecklenburg County:
- Tractor-trailer crashes – 838 crashes, with 162 injuries and 9 fatalities
- School bus crashes – 101 crashes, with 22 injuries and 1 fatality
- Commercial bus crashes – 238 crashes, with 47 injuries and 2 fatalities
- Single unit truck crashes – 394 crashes, with 77 injuries and 1 fatality
- Fire truck crashes – 28 crashes and 2 injuries
However, just because these are the only specific types of vehicles listed by the NCDOT, this doesn’t mean that they are the only types of large trucks involved in accidents each year. Other types of commercial trucks that can lead to significant injuries if a crash occurs include the following:
- Delivery trucks (UPS, FedEx, USPS, Amazon, etc.)
- Cargo vans
- Garbage and recycling trucks
- Construction vehicles
Large commercial trucks are particularly dangerous on the roadway because of their size and weight. A fully loaded tractor-trailer can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds, while traditional passenger vehicles weigh, on average, 4,000 pounds. Motorists will likely sustain severe injury if a car accident occurs involving a large truck.
What accidents are unique to trucks?
While truck drivers can get into the same types of accidents as cars or motorcycles, there are some accidents that are unique to trucks and commercial vehicles. They include:
An underride accident occurs when a passenger vehicle collides with a commercial truck and goes underneath the truck’s trailer. These crashes generally occur when a car runs into the back or side of a large commercial truck. If a truck brakes suddenly or changes lanes in an unsafe manner, it could cause an underride accident. On the other hand, a driver may crash into the back or side of a commercial truck that is parked along the side of the road. These crashes can lead to serious and catastrophic injuries, and they are often fatal.
The federal government has set forth various regulations to help prevent underride accidents. With adequate safety measures, many of these accidents may be avoided. If a negligent truck driver caused your wreck, we will help you file a claim to pursue justice.
Under federal laws, truck drivers must:
- Install federally certified guardrails
- Provide proper maintenance for tail and brake lights
- Use reflective tape to increase the visibility of the truck
- Avoid parking in poorly lit areas on the road
Failure to use safety equipment, such as reflective tape and guardrails, can increase the risk of a fatal underride accident. Furthermore, truck drivers must put out reflective hazard signs when the truck is parked alongside the road. If a truck driver brakes suddenly, drives in a reckless manner, or fails to comply with federal regulations, he or she may be held liable for any injuries that occur.
Truck rollover crashes result in thousands of injuries each year in the United States. Victims could suffer a variety of injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries, lacerations, burn injuries, spinal cord trauma, soft tissue injuries, broken bones, accidental amputations, paralysis, and other catastrophic injuries.
The most common causes of truck rollovers are:
- Driver error: Driver inattention, drowsiness, and poor driving behavior could cause a rollover accident. In fact, it is estimated that driver error is at least partly responsible for more than 75% of all truck rollover crashes. Speeding, failing to maintain the lane, and braking or accelerating suddenly could lead to a deadly accident. Drunk or distracted driving could also result in a truck rollover.
- Defective equipment: Poor maintenance on the truck itself has resulted in many rollover accidents. In one study conducted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), about 55% of all truck rollovers were caused by a brake defect. Truck drivers and maintenance crews have a responsibility to ensure the truck is in proper working condition before each trip.
- Improperly loaded cargo: Imbalanced and overloaded cargo could cause the center of gravity to shift while the truck is moving. For trucks transporting liquid cargo, the sloshing of the liquid could throw off the balance of the truck. This could cause the cargo to tip over, resulting in a rollover crash.
Tractor-trailers and 18-wheelers have two parts: a cab and a trailer. When a truck jackknifes, the cab and the trailer move near each other in a “V” formation, the way a pocket knife does. A jackknifed truck can hit multiple vehicles (and/or stationary objects) at once, which makes a jackknife a particularly dangerous type of event.
Jackknifes are usually the result of speeding-related incidents, such as being unable to take a curve or turn, or hitting the brakes too hard in an attempt to stop. In some cases, they may be the result of poor road conditions or bad weather, or defective truck parts, like tires.
What types of injuries do truck accidents cause?
At Price, Petho & Associates, our Charlotte commercial truck accident lawyers have extensive experience helping clients in the aftermath of their injuries. We regularly help victims who have sustained the following serious and life-altering injuries:
Victims involved in commercial truck accidents are also likely to experience emotional or psychological trauma in the aftermath, typically caused by the stress of both the accident itself, as well as the resulting injuries and the recovery process.
Why do Charlotte commercial truck accidents happen?
Accidents involving commercial trucks in Charlotte often involve the negligent actions of a truck driver or trucking company, or even a truck manufacturer. Accidents can happen from:
- Drivers impaired by alcohol or drugs
- Drivers distracted by phones or other devices
- Failing to follow federal hours-of-service (HOS) regulations
- Failure to thoroughly inspect and maintain each vehicle
- Failure to obey traffic laws
- Improperly loaded cargo
- Failure to properly maintain trucks
- Defective vehicle parts, like defective tires
As you can see, accidents from these causes are preventable. If you or a loved one were hurt in a commercial truck crash that wasn’t your fault, you’re likely eligible for compensation. The attorneys at Price, Petho & Associates can help.
What is the value of my Charlotte truck accident case?
If you were seriously injured in an accident caused by the careless or negligent actions of a truck driver or trucking company, it’s important you contact an attorney as soon as possible. Our skilled Charlotte truck accident lawyers have a long record of success securing compensation for our clients, including:
- Full coverage of medical bills related to the crash
- Lost income if you can’t work
- Out-of-pocket expenses related to your injuries
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Potential punitive damages, in cases of gross negligence
The total amount of compensation available, however, depends on your personal circumstances. This is why we work with your medical team, as well as expert witnesses, to determine exactly how much your injuries have affected, and will affect, your day-to-day life.
Due to the nature of truck accidents, determining liability can be challenging. For most commercial vehicle accidents that occur in the Charlotte area, injury victims must also deal with:
- Multiple insurance carriers
- The company that owns or rents the commercial vehicle
- State or federal regulatory agencies
- Various legal teams
When we take your case, you can put your worries aside and let us handle the legal process while you take the time you need to recover from your injuries.
How long do I have to file my commercial truck accident claim?
If you’re injured in a Charlotte truck accident, you must be aware of the deadlines for filing a legal claim. The North Carolina personal injury statute of limitations is three years from the date an accident or injury occurs. This means that you, or your loved one, have a three-year window with which to file a lawsuit against an alleged negligent truck driver or trucking company. Otherwise, you’ll likely lose the chance to recover the compensation to which you’re entitled.
It is important to get started on these cases as soon as possible. Often, victims end up dealing with aggressive insurance carriers that will seek to delay a settlement for as long as possible. Our attorneys can move this process along and advocate for it to work in your favor.
Is there a truck accident attorney near me?
Price, Petho & Associates has an office at 1420 Elizabeth Ave in Charlotte. We also maintain offices in Rockingham and Rutherfordton for your convenience. If you are too injured to come to us, we make home and hospital visits as well.
Charlotte truck accident attorneys on your side
If you or somebody you love has been injured in an accident involving a commercial motor vehicle in or around the Charlotte area, reach out to the team at Price, Petho & Associates for help today. Our attorneys have extensive experience handling complex vehicle accident claims throughout the state, and we have the resources and knowledge necessary to help recover the compensation you need. To schedule a free consultation, call 704-372-2160 or fill out our contact form today. Serving Charlotte, Rockingham, Rutherfordton, North Carolina, and South Carolina.