Commercial vehicles present many hazards to bystanders and other vehicles on the road. The size and weight of these trucks alone makes them more dangerous than other vehicles. However, dump trucks — or any vehicle hauling loose material — can be especially hazardous. Dump trucks, particularly those used to haul construction debris or materials, carry very heavy loads, sometimes weighing as much as 50 tons.
Drivers are also exposed to stressful working conditions that make them more prone to risk-taking behaviors. For example, many Austin dump truck drivers are self-employed, so they are incentivized by their ability to haul more loads. And because these vehicles are typically carrying loose materials, there may be issues if loads are not properly secured.
These accidents can be quite severe, often causing serious injuries with life-altering consequences. In fact, in some cases, dump truck accidents are fatal. But they can also be quite difficult to navigate, since there may be many different parties and insurance policies involved in your case. Here’s what you need to know about Austin dump truck accidents.
Questions to Ask in Your Dump Truck Accident Case
As stated before, there are many factors that may determine liability, as well as your rights and options in your dump truck accident case. The following are some issues you’ll need to think about as you decide how to proceed with your case.
- Was the Vehicle Being Responsibly Operated? Drivers are responsible for the safe operation of their vehicles. Unfortunately, drivers in the construction industry may feel pressure to behave recklessly. For instance, many are paid by the weight of their load, meaning they may be tempted to overload vehicles, making them difficult to stop and more likely to roll over. They may also feel pressured to get to their destination quickly, which can cause them to take risks while driving.
- Did the Drivers Employer Act Negligently? Employers are responsible for ensuring that drivers are properly trained and that vehicles are maintained and regularly serviced. Unfortunately, many neglect these obligations, which can lead to accidents. They may even encourage drivers to engage in reckless behavior by pressuring them to drive faster and carry more. When it can be proven that an employer acted negligently, that evidence will significantly impact your case.
- What Is the Relationship of the Driver to Their Employer?Many dump truck drivers are independent contractors, meaning they are not directly employed by construction companies. This can add complexity to your case, as you will need to determine the employer’s responsibilities in your case.
- What Is Your Relationship to the Driver? Not all dump truck accidents occur while on the road. In some cases, improperly operated dump trucks can cause injuries to other workers on the jobsite. If you are injured by a dump truck while on the job, it may impact your case. For instance, if the dump truck operator was employed by a third-party vendor or if there are workers’ compensation benefits available to you through your employer, it can affect your rights and options.
- What Kinds of Insurance Policies May Be Involved? When there are multiple parties like an employer or a third-party contractor involved in an accident case, it may be difficult to determine whose insurance is liable for coverage. Insurance providers may also disagree about which carrier is liable, which can add complexity to your case as well.
What an Austin Dump Truck Accident Lawyer Can Bring to Your Case
Because dump truck accident cases are so complicated, it’s in your best interest to contact a lawyer and at least get a sense of your rights and options. Most dump truck accident lawyers will provide you with a free consultation to review you case and offer advice before you decide how to proceed. Getting educated as soon as possible can dramatically improve the outcome of your case.
More specifically, here’s how an experienced law firm can help with your case:
- Trucking expertise. The right Austin dump truck accident lawyer will have experience with the trucking industry and the different laws that govern it. That knowledge will prove fundamental as you begin making decisions about your case.
- Negotiating with insurance carriers. Communicating with insurance carriers can be difficult, particularly when providers disagree about who is responsible for coverage. A personal injury lawyer can do this work on your behalf, ensuring that insurance carriers are paying what the law requires.
- Estimating the value of damages. If you have been seriously injured in a dump truck accident, you may be facing long-term medical expenses. You may have additional losses as well: for instance, loss of income or earning ability. A lawyer can help you estimate the lifetime value of these losses and damages so that you can seek the compensation you need.
- Communicating with all involved parties.There may be many parties involved in your dump truck accident case. An Austin dump truck accident lawyer can help by assuming the burden of communicating with these various groups so that you can focus on healing from your accident.
- Maximizing your recovery. Many dump truck accidents are life-altering. This can mean a lifetime of financial costs you did not expect. Failing to fully understand your rights and options after a dump truck accident could cost you a substantial amount of money.
Why Hire FVF to Help with Your Austin Dump Truck Accident Case
Speaking with a lawyer after your dump truck accident case is a good idea for every victim. However, it’s important that you choose an attorney you can trust — one with enough experience to provide sound legal guidance and strategy. At FVF, we have handled many trucking accident cases and have been able to achieve excellent outcomes for our clients. We also pride ourselves on our client-first approach to law. Here’s why we bring to the table.
- Case experience. At FVF, we have handled hundreds of Austin personal injury cases and have a reputation for excellent outcomes. Our team of lawyers understand the ins and outs of construction site and trucking accidents and can provide sound legal advice in these cases.
- Compassionate legal guidance. Our team of Austin dump truck lawyers are not only experienced. We’re also sensitive to the emotional, physical and financial difficulties clients face in the wake of an accident. That’s why we strive to provide sensitive, compassionate guidance for every client.
- Excellent reputation. We encourage accident victims to read our outstanding reviews on Yelp, Google and AVVO. Our team has a history among Austin dump truck lawyers for superior work and excellent case outcomes.
- Free case consultation. It’s important to us that you make the most educated decision for your case — without the pressure to engage us to handle your case. That’s why we provide a free case evaluation for every accident victim who contacts us.
If you have been injured in a dump truck accident, we encourage you to connect with us to arrange a case evaluation at no cost. We’ll discuss your rights and legal options and advise you on the best way to move forward with your case. Contact us today to get started.