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Truck accidents involving passenger vehicles often lead to catastrophic injuries and damage. In a wide turn accident the truck often swings far into another lane before turning, and can collide with other vehicles, pedestrians, and motorists sharing the road. Particularly in light of the massive size and weight of these vehicles, truck accident victims may suffer life-altering injuries requiring ongoing medical care. At Gelb & Gelb, Washington, D.C. truck accident lawyer Roger Gelb strives to maximize compensation for those hurt by the careless or negligent conduct of a truck driver or trucking company. As a recognized leading advocate in the Washington, D.C. area, Attorney Gelb personally handles every case in the office and has successfully helped victims and their loved ones by recovering multi-million dollar amounts. Our firm focuses on advocating for vehicle accident victims in Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C.Proving Negligence After a Wide Turn Truck Accident
In a personal injury lawsuit arising from a truck accident, the victim usually asserts the negligence of the driver. In order to prevail, the victim must prove the four elements of negligence: duty, breach, causation, and damages.
Qualified truck drivers are expected to safely maneuver their vehicles on highways and local roads. Meeting this expectation is also known as fulfilling the duty of care truck drivers owe to others on the road. The reality is that characteristics of large trucks can increase the likelihood of a collision, especially when drivers are careless behind the wheel. A truck driver who does not meet their required duty of care and causes an accident may be held accountable.
When a truck driver does not drive their vehicle in a reasonable manner, this can constitute a breach of their duty of care. In some situations, truck drivers attempt to make a turn without properly checking their mirrors and blind spots; other accidents involve distracted, fatigued, or inexperienced drivers. These factors can support a victim’s assertion that the truck driver breached their duty to avoid causing foreseeable harm.
Next, the injured victim must demonstrate that the defendant’s breach directly caused their injuries. Another intervening action must not have led to the accident or resulting harm. Witnesses, engineers, and accident reconstructionists may be relied upon to help make clear the direct causes of the accident.
Damages in a successful truck accident legal claim are usually larger than in a passenger vehicle collision injury claim. This is due to the severity of physical harm and emotional suffering often endured by collision victims. Individuals injured in truck accidents may suffer broken bones, spinal cord damage, paralysis, and even fatalities. Insurance coverage available from a trucking company is usually more comprehensive than that of a driver. A successful legal claim against a truck company is one way to recover maximum compensation for accident costs. A skilled truck accident lawyer can help you identify all potentially responsible parties in your case.Truck Companies May Be Legally Responsible for an Employee’s Conduct
For wide turn truck accidents, there may be more than one at-fault party. If there is an employment relationship between the driver and a trucking company, the company can be held responsible for the conduct of their employee truck drivers under the legal theory of vicarious liability. Other legal theories may be appropriate if the facts indicate that the employer knew, or should have known, that their employee posed a risk of harm.Contributory Negligence as a Legal Defense
In the District of Columbia, accident victims may face a contributory negligence claim by the defendant. In making this argument the defendant can assert that the victim partly caused the crash. For example, they may allege that despite knowing the truck was turning, the victim tried to sneak past the truck before finally being struck. If a judge or jury finds the victim was negligent, the victim’s recovery will be reduced in accordance with their proportion of fault. Provided they are 51 percent or less responsible for the crash, victims can still be entitled to compensation.Truck Accident Lawyer Representing Washington, D.C. Area Residents
Washington, D.C. lawyer Roger Gelb assists injured individuals and families dealing with the aftermath of a truck accident by working to maximize their compensation. Representing people throughout VA, MD, and Washington, D.C., Mr. Gelb communicates directly with his clients throughout the course of their cases. To learn more, please contact our office at 202- 331-7227 or online.