How many times in your life have you seen an accident that involves a tractor-trailer? Too many times to remember, right? With estimates of 2,752,043 tractor-trailers on the road, the odds are that at least some of these tractor-trailers will be operated by a trucker who will not act responsibly and negligently to cause a collision on a North Carolina highway.
Tractor trailers can weigh up to 80,000 pounds and do not stop on a dime. The truck driver instructs drivers with a 60-foot rig to leave for as much as 6 seconds to control time. The reason is simple – the sheer force and momentum of a collision with an 18-wheeler can be devastating.
Tractor-Trailer Collisions in North Carolina
In 2018 North Carolina reported 6,513 total tractor-trailer-related collisions. There were 73 reported fatalities and 1,381 reported injuries caused by commercial vehicles.
Mecklenburg County (Charlotte) led the state with 1,027 tractor-trailer-related collisions, which led to 4 fatalities and 210 injuries. Wake (Raleigh) county was second in the state with 396 tractor-trailer-associated clashes, which led to 2 deaths and 67 total injuries. Orange county reported 60 total crashes, one fatality, and 14 injuries.
Mecklenburg County and Wake County led the state in commercial vehicle collisions, injuries, and fatalities. This is due to the sheer size of those two counties and the major interstates that run through them (I85 & I40), which see hundreds of tractor-trailers use them daily.
Tractor-Trailer Collision Claims
In many respects, North Carolina personal injury claims involving tractor-trailer collisions are more complex than other automobile crash cases. They can involve complex accident reconstructions, multiple expert witnesses, such as trucking industry professionals, and the examination of regulations passed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Because of the sheer size of tractor-trailers, trucking accidents tend to involve serious to catastrophic injuries and complex medical issues.
The most important advice that a lawyer can give a tractor-trailer collision victim is to seek counsel to assist with the crash investigation immediately. Unlike many car accident cases, high-impact trucking cases need immediate, extensive research. For example, your attorney may want to retain an accident reconstruction engineer to immediately perform a skid mark analysis or investigate other physical indications of the crash at the scene. It is also essential to preserve data available through the truck’s “black box,” as well as any GPS data or onboard video footage.
Damages Recoverable in Tractor-Trailer Collision Cases
If you have been injured due to tractor-trailer collisions, North Carolina law allows for recovering several “elements” of monetary damages. Included are compensation for past and future medical and pharmaceutical expenses, past and future lost wages, past and future physical pain and mental suffering, permanent injury, and permanent scarring. In handling your case, Maginnis Law will, if appropriate, work with life care planners, vocational rehabilitation experts, and expert physicians to ensure that your entire future medical expenses are thoroughly estimated.
Representation for North Carolina Tractor-Trailer Collisions
Reckless tractor-trailer drivers are a danger to everyone on the road. When their negligence causes a wreck, the victim must hold the driver and their employer financially responsible.
The Raleigh trucking accident attorneys of Maginnis Law can assist you in the process of recovering fair compensation for your injuries. The firm’s lead personal injury attorney, T. Shawn Howard, is a multi-million dollar advocate and has been designated a Super Lawyers Rising Star every year since 2016. To schedule a free consultation, visit our contact page. Our firm offers a contingency fee arrangement to all victims of tractor-trailer collisions. This means that you pay no attorneys’ fees unless and until we make a recovery on your behalf. If you have questions regarding this blog post or a potential case, don’t hesitate to call us at (919) 526-0450.