Commercial tractor-trailers are large vehicles that require specialized training and skill to maneuver. Accordingly, they often carry heavy or dangerous freight and have difficulty making sharp turns and stopping quickly. If the driver of a truck is distracted and does not have their attention on the road and the traffic around them, the potential for disaster increases.
Fortunately, Florida law allows injured people to seek compensation from negligent truck drivers or their employers with assistance from attorneys specializing in truck accident cases. If you are injured in a truck accident caused by a truck driver not paying attention to the road, it could be crucial that you get in touch with a skilled West Palm Beach distracted driving truck accident lawyer as soon as possible.
Multiple Defendants in Truck Accident Claims
A truck driver who is distracted and fails to uphold their duty to pay attention to shifting traffic conditions is usually the party held primarily liable for these accidents. However, it is possible for multiple people and/or entities to share the blame.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration heavily regulates the trucking industry, and there are requirements that the trucking company must complete or risk liability for injuries. Some of these include:
- Allowing adequate rest times for the drivers
- Logging driving hours
- Performing regular maintenance on the vehicle
- Carrying no more than the maximum load allowable by weight
If a trucking company fails to meet those requirements, it can become partially responsible for a truck accident. It is also possible that the manufacturer of truck parts can be implicated in such a wreck if the product they provided was faulty or unsafe. With help from a West Palm Beach distracted truck driving accident attorney, an injured person can seek damages from all responsible parties.
Potential Limitations to Damage Awards
Fault and negligence are tricky matters. Even though a truck driver might have been distracted at the time of the accident, it is possible that the injured party was also distracted or violated some rule of the road. Luckily, Florida does not bar partially at-fault plaintiffs from recovering compensation.
Instead, their total recoverable compensation would be reduced by the percentage of blame attributed to them, as dictated by Florida Statutes §768.81. For example, if an injured person were found to be 40 percent responsible for the accident that caused their injuries, the total amount they could pursue from the opposing truck driver would be reduced by 40 percent as well. A knowledgeable West Palm Beach lawyer could go into further detail about how this statute may affect the outcome of a truck accident case based on distracted driving.
Get in Touch with a West Palm Beach Distracted Driving Truck Accident Attorney Today
The statute of limitations for these cases is four years, according to Fla. Stat. §95.11, but evidence can fade before that deadline arrives. After receiving the medical care you need, you should consult with a qualified West Palm Beach distracted driving truck accident lawyer as soon as possible.
Even if your case does not go to court, your attorney may be able to help you gain leverage at the negotiating table to reach a more favorable settlement. You deserve compensation from the at-fault driver, and experienced legal counsel can help you achieve that goal. Call today to schedule an initial consultation.