Who Is at Fault in a Maryland Truck Accident?

A Maryland truck accident presents unique problems. These issues are often different from what’s obtainable in other traffic accidents. For instance, truck collisions often result in more severe injuries. This is because of their heavy size and weight. In addition, establishing the fault isn’t always straightforward in Maryland truck accidents.

This difficulty is because multiple parties could be responsible for trucking accidents. Therefore, you’ll have to determine which of these parties caused the truck crash. However, this wouldn’t be an issue if you hire Maryland truck accident attorneys. An excellent lawyer can place the fault in truck collisions.

What Is a Truck Accident?

Truck accidents are vehicle collisions involving tractor-trailers, 18-wheelers, semi-trucks, and other vehicles. They cause injuries and further damage to the parties involved. In addition, trucking accidents can happen between trucks, passenger vehicles, and pedestrians. Whatever the case, it’s usually people outside the trucks that die in most cases.

Examples of truck accidents include:

  • Head-on and rear-end collisions
  • Jackknife accidents
  • Blindspot accidents
  • Underride accidents
  • Rollover accidents
  • Tire blowouts

Possible Fault Parties in a Maryland Truck Accident

Below are the parties who could be responsible for a trucking accident.

The Truck Driver (Truckers)

Truckers are the primary sources of accident responsibility. Since they’re in direct control of the truck, the chances are higher that they caused the accident. Furthermore, truck drivers owe a duty of care to other road users. So, if they neglect this duty, they’ll be responsible for any consequential accident.

Here, a truck driver can cause an accident in the same manner other passenger car drivers would. The list of negligent and careless conduct includes:

  • Distracted driving
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Improper lane changes
  • Over-speeding and road rage
  • Disobeying traffic rules
  • Terrible judgment

Notably, truckers have mandatory driving limits. This is how long they can drive without resting. If a trucker goes beyond this limit, they’ll be liable for any collisions they cause.

The Trucking Company

The trucking company can also be liable for truck collisions. This liability can arise in two primary instances. Firstly, it’s the trucking company that puts drivers on the road. Therefore, they must take reasonable care when hiring truckers. For example, they shouldn’t hire truckers with a history of drunk driving. If the company employs undeserving drivers, they’ll be liable for any accidents.

In addition, the trucking company also has to train and evaluate its drivers continuously. Where they slack on any of these two responsibilities, they’ll have to pay for any accidents they cause. Finally, trucking companies are often responsible for maintaining the trucks. Unfortunately, these companies sometimes put poorly maintained trucks on the road. If such an un-serviced truck causes an accident, the company will thus be liable to the injured party.

Cargo Loaders

Truck loaders or shippers may also be liable for a truck accident. There are two significant ways responsibility can rest on this class. Firstly, all trucks have definite cargo limits. However, cargo loaders often exceed this authorized limit. Where this happens, the cargo can spill over on the road. In such cases, the loader or shipper will be liable for the accident.

In addition, cargo loaders must adequately secure the truck loads. If they don’t, the cargo can loosen in transit and cause accidents. Therefore, where the accident was caused by improperly secured cargo, you can hold the shippers liable.

The Truck Manufacturer

Finally, the truck maker could be responsible for accidents. However, this liability is limited mainly to product liability claims. These are cases where there was an inherent fault in the truck from the factory. Truck defects are dangerous because they can make parts malfunction when the driver needs them. So, if such a product defect causes an accident, the company would have to pay.

That’s why vehicle manufacturers recall vehicles when they realize they have any defects. Possible defective parts of a truck include:

  • Faulty brakes and brake system
  • Truck tires
  • Rear underride guards
  • Windshield wipers
  • Truck steering systems

Maryland Truck Accident Attorneys Can Help You Prove Fault

If you survive a Maryland truck accident, you can recover compensation. First, however, you must establish which party is responsible for your accident. This can be challenging for anyone. Therefore, it’ll be best to hire experienced truck accident lawyers.

At Pinder Plotkin, LLC, our lawyers have helped many truck collision victims. Consequently, we’ve mastered the art of proving fault in trucking collisions. So, if we analyze your case’s evidence, we can determine and prove who bears the liability. This would increase your chances of getting the maximum compensation. Therefore, it would be best to call us today for a FREE consultation.

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