EIGHTEEN WHEELER AND SEMI TRUCK ACCIDENT ATTORNEYS IN HUNTSVILLE AL
Trucking Accident Lawyers Near Me
While many attorneys claim to handle truck accident cases, Randy W. Ferguson dedicates more than 75% of his practice to handling truck accident and commercial vehicle cases. It’s important that you hire a truck accident lawyer in Huntsville who can win your case. From the first day you hire your trucking accident attorney, there are steps he or she should take and questions that need to be asked. Whether you live in Huntsville or in any other city or state, we are the attorneys (abogados) you need to contact if you or a loved one has been seriously injured or killed in a tractor trailer accident. We are here to help. We offer no obligation FREE CONSULTATIONS to all truck accident victims. Call 256-534-3435 or 256-350-7200. We are here to help.
Trucking is a big business, and trucking accidents happen way more than they have to in this country. Huntsville, Alabama trucking lawyer Randy Ferguson understands that highway safety is an issue of great concern to most Alabamians. Semi truck and eighteen wheeler accidents present unique issues not necessarily associated with a typical motor vehicle accident. Birmingham, Cullman, Decatur and Huntsville, Alabama all have interstates that carry thousands of eighteen wheelers a day down their roads. Some of the busiest interstates in this country run through Atlanta, Georgia, Nashville, Tennessee, and Birmingham, Alabama. When a tractor trailer truck is involved in a accident, there is a greater likelihood of serious injuries or deaths due to size disparities between trucks and cars and the basic laws of physics.
Huntsville Truck Accident Information
Every year, hundreds of Alabama residents along with thousands of Americans are injured or lose their lives in accidents involving tractor-trailers, semis, 18-wheelers, big rigs and other large commercial vehicles. In 2017, 4,657 fatal crashes involving large trucks occurred in the United States. For the past 30 years, fatigued driving has been, and will continue to be, the number one safety issue in the commercial motor vehicle industry. A typical fully-loaded large commercial truck can weigh 80,000 pounds or more, while an average passenger automobile weighs approximately 3000 pounds. Because of this size disparity, and due to the basic laws of physics, any trucking collision between a commercial truck and another vehicle is likely to result in serious, even fatal, injuries. While statistics show that truck drivers are generally much more careful on the road than automobile drivers, and thankfully the incidence of fatal crashes involving trucks and other large vehicles has declined in recent years, large truck crashes still accounted for 5350 fatalities and 133,000 injuries in 2001.
Causes of Huntsville Truck Accidents
Thousands are injured each year in truck accidents in Alabama. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), ranks the most common factors involved in truck accident. There are various causes of truck crashes including:
- Driver fatigue: Driver fatigue causes 18 percent of trucking accidents or almost one in five.
- Sleep-deprived and drowsy truckers: Many eighteen wheeler accidents are caused by sleepy truck drivers. That is why the law requires them to only drive a certain amount of hour per day.
- Overloaded or unsafe trucks: When a truck’s load exceeds state and federal weight limits, the truck driver and all other motor vehicles on the highway face the risk of an accident.
- Speeding: Almost 1/3 of all fatal car crashes in the U.S. are caused by excessive speeding.
- Weather and road conditions: Fog, ice, floods, snow and heavy winds create driving hazards and limit visibility for safe driving.
- Driver distractions: Some common distractions are passengers, cell phones, satellite radio, hands-free devices and outside distractions.
- Drunk Driving: Truck accidents are sometimes caused by drunk drivers. Blood alcohol concentration levels are lower for commercial drivers, meaning that truckers may not test at or above .04 BAC, or about half as much as the .08 legal limit in Alabama. In these cases you can also pursue bar owners, restaurants, liquor stores, or others who served a truck driver alcohol.
- Failure to Yield to Pedestrians: When a big rig or semi driver is negligent and hits a pedestrian, the seriously injured party or their survivors often have a case against the driver and his trucking insurance. Truck drivers have a duty to watch for pedestrians and bicyclists on or near roadways. While these types of accidents can happen to adults or children, children are at a particular risk due to their tendency to run into road without looking.
- Failure to yield: Alabama truck drivers approaching traffic lights and yield signs must yield the right-of-way to other motor vehicles, bicyclists, and pedestrians. Failure to yield is a common cause of truck accidents in Alabama. Any commercial truck driver in Alabama who fails to yield the right-of-way is typically considered at fault.
- Running red lights and stop signs: The two most common reasons drivers run stop signs are impatience or inattention. Drivers who run stop signs cause approximately 70,000 accidents each year. In roughly one-third of these accidents, someone is seriously injured.
- Driving too fast for conditions: Driving too fast for conditions does not only include speeding. Truck drivers in Alabama often drive too fast for road conditions, which can lead to accidents. Driving too fast for conditions accounts for about 23% of all truck accidents leading to over 30,000 trucking accidents each year.
- Failure to stay in lane: The failure to keep your commercial vehicle within the marked lanes is one of the most common causes of truck accidents. All drivers are required to operate their vehicle within the clearly marked painted lane lines. Further, if you change lanes, you must use your turn signals.
- Failure to train driver: There are a lot of unqualified truck drivers on the road. Commercial truck drivers need training both in a classroom and on the road. When a truck driver’s negligence is the result of improper training, an injured individual can sue the trucking company for not training or not knowing the driver was untrained.
- Prescription drug use: Truck drivers often fail to tell their employers that they are taking prescription medicines that could impact their ability to drive. Many prescription drugs that people take for depression, sleeplessness, anxiety, and chronic conditions such as obesity, diabetes, and autoimmune issues can affect an individual’s driving ability.
- Unfamiliarity with roadway: One of the most common causes of truck crashes in Alabama is unfamiliarity with local roads. Road construction and improvements often surprise unsuspecting truck drivers.
- Failure to watch for motorcycles: Many motorcycle accidents are caused by truck drivers who do not see the motorcycle before changing lanes.
- Following to close: Truck drivers tailgating other motor vehicles are a common cause of truck accidents in Alabama and Tennessee. Depending on size and speed, a car may be able to stop within 2 to 4 seconds. Stopping an 80,000 pound tractor-trailer can take almost twice as long to stop.
- Improper passing: Improper passing or turning by truck drivers in Alabama and Tennessee can result in serious injuries or the death. Improper passing can be changing lanes without signaling, not yielding the right of way, passing another vehicle in a no-passing zone or checking blind spots.
- Reckless driving: Reckless driving can be speeding, failing to yield the right of way, cutting off other drivers, tailgating, weaving in and out of traffic, passing other cars and trucks aggressively and many other dangerous practices.
- Wrong way driving:An overwhelming number of wrong way collisions are related to the use of alcohol, drugs and unfamiliarity of roads. Inadequate or confusing signage also causes many wrong way accidents.
- Texting and driving: Big rig collisions and injuries are often caused by truck drivers or motorists texting and driving. Truck drivers are subject to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Act (FMCSA) and are not supposed to be using cell phones while operating a truck. The FMCSA is a federal law that prohibits truckers from using cell phones while they are driving. Texting while driving is permissible for drivers of a commercial motor vehicle when necessary to communicate with law enforcement officials or other emergency services.
- Defective vehicle parts and maintenance: A study conducted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) cited vehicle failure as a factor in 33.1 percent of two-vehicle crashes involving a heavy truck and a passenger vehicle, and 29.4 percent of all truck accidents. Both federal and state laws regulate the maintenance of commercial vehicles. Common types of equipment failures or defects include tire blowouts, steering failure, brake, defective lights, brake failure, defective straps and defective trailer hitch.
- Hazardous road conditions and debris: Dangerous road conditions can include: Burned out street lights, malfunctioning traffic lights, faded lines on the roadway, missing and inadequate road signs, potholes, untrimmed foliage obscuring signage, narrow roads without shoulders, steep drop offs at shoulders, overly steep roads, too narrow or sharp curves and items dropped in the road.
- Construction zones: Construction zones can be hazardous for truckers. The speed limit is lower, and traffic can stop quickly and back up. When commercial trucks — big rigs, semis, 18-wheelers, or tractor-trailers are on a timeline to deliver their loads, this can cause the perfect storm.
- Shoulder drop-offs: A shoulder or pavement crop off refers to a defect where the elevation changes between the lane and shoulder, or between two travel lanes. These types of edge drop-offs are often caused by water, poor maintenance or defective construction.
- Rollovers: Most rollover accidents is Alabama and Tennessee are caused by driver errors. The main causes are: speeding, distracted driving, driver fatigue, impaired driving, unsecured loads, improperly or overloaded loads and worn tires.
- Improper loading: When a load shifts or falls off the vehicle because it was improperly loaded, people get injured. Improper cargo loading accounts for hundreds of serious truck accidents each year.The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) publishes a guide on loading cargo for truck drivers. The Cargo Securement Rules by the FMCSA have been adapted based on the North American Cargo Securement Standard Model Regulations and have been in place since January of 2004.
- Jackknife accidents: A semi-tractor trailer has three braking systems. One braking system controls the steering axle, one controls the cab’s drive wheels and a third controls the wheels of the trailer. Many truck accidents involve a jackknifed tractor-trailer, where the tractor loses control of the trailer and it swings out, forming a “V” or “L” shape. Usually this happens when the drive wheels lock and the other wheels keep moving forward, causing the trailer to swing around so that it’s at an angle with the tractor/cab.
- Underride accidents: Underride accidents happen when a passenger vehicle gets crushed under the rear or side of a tractor trailer. Most of these accidents are not survivable. An estimated 423 people die in underride accidents with large trucks each year.
- Tire blow-outs: Tire blowouts happen when a weakened tire is subjected to sudden pressure or impact that causes the tire to burst or rapidly lose air pressure. Often caused by potholes, underinflation, overloading, wear and heat.
- Driving beyond their allowed Hours of Service: Truck drivers are federally mandated to limit the amount of time they operate their trucks in any given day or week for safety reasons. Under the FMCSA hours of service regulations, truck drivers may drive no more than 11 hours at a time after 10 consecutive off-duty hours
- Driving without the proper license: Drivers of large trucks, such as 18-wheelers, and other commercial vehicles must follow the state statutes and case law on commercial drivers’ licensing. Truck drivers must have a commercial driver’s license (CDL) to operate a commercial truck.
- Operating oversized trucks on narrow roads: Driving large commercial vehicles on narrow roads and bridges can cause serious accidents.
- Failure to see other vehicles due to the truck’s large blind spot: Because of the size of a eighteen wheeler, they have much bigger blind spots than other vehicles on the road.
Differences Between Truck and Car Accidents
There are numerous differences between a car accident and a truck accident. The biggest differences are as follows:
- Much bigger insurance policies. Insurance $750,000.00 minimum.
- Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Regulations must be followed.
- More serious injuries and deaths.
- Much more property damage to motor vehicles.
- Trucking adjusters come to scene of the accident immediately.
- Longer hospital stays and more medical bills.
- More deaths per accident in trucking cases.
- Requires better trained and experienced trucking attorneys.
- Often requires accident reconstruction experts.
- More expensive cases to pursue.
Commercial truck drivers must meet certain requirements to operate their vehicles safely and legally. They must do the following:
- Be at least is 21 years of age.
- Communicate with the general public, read traffic signs and signals, react to government inquiries, and keep accurate records, a truck driver must be able to read, speak, and interpret English well enough.
- The truck driver must possess the physical requirements to drive a commercial truck.(physical)
- Truck driver must possess a commercial motor vehicle operator’s license that has not expired and is granted by more than one state or jurisdiction.
- Truck driver’s employer must have a copy of the truck driver’s driving history or credentials on file.
- Truck driver cannot have been banned from using commercial vehicles, they will not be qualified to drive a truck.
- The truck driver must have acquired a certificate proving completion of a truck driver’s road test and have successfully completed a truck driver’s road test in order to be properly qualified to operate a truck on public roads. This certificate is required in order to ensure that the truck driver understands the truck’s capabilities and limitations, and has the skills necessary to operate the truck safely.
- In Alabama truck drivers must be at least 18 years old, pass a vision test, and acquire a DOT medical certificate in order to qualify for a CDL. Alabama only requires a CDL if the truck has a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of greater than 26,000 pounds, can carry 16 or more people, or transports hazardous goods. Candidates also have to successfully complete a driving test and a written knowledge examination. Truck drivers in Alabama must also adhere to strict hours-of-service rules of the FMCSR.
Federal CMV Restrictions/Service Hours
Commercial motor operators that drive big trucks have restrictions for trucks carrying property cargo limited to maximum hours driven; minimum hours off duty; and required rest after 60/70 hour driving limit meaning a driver may not drive after 60/70 hours on duty in 7/8 consecutive days. A driver may restart a 7/8 consecutive day period after taking 34 or more consecutive hours off duty. Commercial motor vehicle drivers that are carrying people have more stringent restrictions. The United States Department of Transportation, 49 C.F.R. part 387, subpart A, assures insurance coverage in an amount equivalent to the minimum levels of financial responsibility set forth in those regulations.In order to prevent truck drivers from becoming fatigued and operating their vehicles unsafely, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has placed limits on the number of hours a truck driver can drive in a day or work week. The current guidelines require the following:
- The truck drivers are only permitted to drive for 11 hours after 10 consecutive hours off-duty, and
- Driver is not allowed to operate a vehicle for more than 14 hours in a row after returning to work following a 10-hour break.
- Truck drivers are not allowed to drive after working 60 hours in 7 days or 70 hours in 8 days.
- Drivers can only restart a 7- or 8-day stretch after taking 34 or more hours off consecutively.
- Truck drivers must take a mandatory 30-minute break after eight hours of driving
How to Stay Safe From Eighteen Wheelers on the Road
If you find yourself beside or behind a big truck, always do the following:
- Leave enough room between you and the truck. Underride accidents can happen if you follow too close to the truck.
- If you can’t see their mirrors, they can’t see you. Do not stay in the blind spot of an eighteen wheeler.
- Trucks can way 80,000 pounds. That means they will take a lot longer to stop than a normal motor vehicle. Do not jump in front of a truck and expect them to be able to stop. You will get the bad end of the deal, not them.
- Trucks make wide right turns. Do not pass a truck making a wide right turn or you will get hit. You will also be at fault for the accident. Being alive is more important than being late.
Types of Trucking Companies
There are many different types of trucking companies that must follow the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations. Some of the companies including the following
- UPS Trucks
- Fed-Ex Trucks
- USPS Trucks
- Logging Trucks
- All Delivery Trucks
- Garbage Trucks
- Car/Transport Trucks
- Delivery Trucks
- Fuel Trucks
- Construction/Dump Trucks
- Concrete Trucks
- Coal Trucks
- Moving Vans
- Steel Trucks
- Tanker Trucks
- Tow Trucks
- All Eighteen Wheelers
Who is at Fault in a Trucking Accident
When you or a loved one has been injured in a truck or tractor-trailer accident, there are numerous people and entities that could be liable for your injuries. Those include the following:
- Truck driver
- Truck company or owner
- Manufacturers of the trucks
- Truck part manufacturers
- Maintenance companies
- Shipping company
- Cargo loading company
- Governmental entities: State
- Road maintenance or contractors
- Motor vehicle drivers
- Bars or taverns
Dangerous Roads in Alabama
Truck accidents can occur anywhere, including parking lots, on the highway, or even in your own driveway. The
most dangerous roads in Alabama include the following:
- Beltline Road in Decatur, Alabama;
- Highway 431;
- 6th Avenue in Decatur, Alabama;
- Interstate 85;
- Interstate 20;
- Interstate 65;
- University and the Parkway Huntsville;
Truck Accident Statistics
Every year nearly a half million large truck accidents occur in the United States. And because of the size and weight of these vehicles, accidents involving trucks are often much more dangerous or fatal than your typical car accident. Most trucking accidents in Alabama take place on the interstate, but more fatalities take place on state highways. Only four percent of all injuries sustained in motor vehicle accidents are caused by large trucks, but 86 percent of fatalities and 77 percent of those injured are the drivers and passengers of the car involved in the crash. According to ALDOT, the primary causes of truck accidents in Alabama includes the following:
- Improper Lane Usage— 1,104 (12.4 percent)
- Failure to Yield Right of Way — 847 (9.5 percent)
- Unseen Object, Person, or Vehicle — 817 (9.2 percent)
- Tailgating — 692 (7.7 percent)
- Misjudged Stopping Distance — 504 (5.6 percent)
- Defective Equipment — 399 (4.5 percent)
- Improper Backing — 360 (4.0 percent)
- Improper Turning — 322 (3.6 percent)
- Avoiding Animal, Object, or Person — 322 (3.6 percent)
- Crossed Median/Centerline — 272 (3.0 percent)
- Failure to Heed Sign/Signal — 233 (2.6 percent)
- Fatigued/Asleep — 200 (2.2 percent)
- Driving too Fast for Conditions — 176 (2.0 percent)
- Improper Passing — 173 (1.9 percent)
- Ran Off Road — 157 (1.8 percent)
- Driving Under the Influence — 111 (1.2 percent)
- Over the Speed Limit — 86 (1.0 percent)
- Unknown causes – 448 (5.0)
- Other causes – 1,714 (19.2)
The most recent statistics show that 333,000 large truck wrecks occurred in the U.S. in a one-year span. These accidents killed 3,921 people and injured another 104,000. Every year in Alabama the causes of truck accident remain the same, but the percentages change slightly on a year to year basis. In many cases there are two or more causes to truck accident.
What to do After A Huntsville Truck Accident
After a eighteen wheeler accident, you are often confused and unsure of what to say or do. Always remain at the scene until you can speak with the other party involved if you can. Never admit you were at fault and do the following:
- Immediately file an accident report with the police, sheriff or state trooper, if the agency has not done so at the scene.
- Write down the name, address, insurance information, vehicle license number and driver’s license number of any and all persons involved in the car accident. Record names, addresses and telephone numbers of all witnesses.
- Obtain photographs of the accident scene, all vehicles involved (before repairing) and any visible injuries to the parties involved, such as cuts, bruises, and scars.
- If you have a dashcam installed by a company like BlackBoxMyCar, recover any footage that documents the accident.
- Do not discuss the accident or your injuries with anyone, with the exception of your doctor and your attorney.
- Do not consent to a recorded statement or sign any document without first reviewing it with your attorney. Innocent statements made by you attempting to assist an insurance adjuster can easily be misinterpreted and used to deny or minimize your recovery.
- Immediately seek medical attention and tell your doctor the nature and extent of your pain and injury, and how the injury occurred.
- Track Your Expenses. If you car is written off from an accident, you may have to fork out a lot for a new car, so looking for a used car dealer may be your best option.
A strong claim clearly outlines the financial impact of your accident. Keep records of your:
- All medical bills, including doctor’s visits, surgery and therapy,
- Future medical bills including long term care,
- mileage driven to all medical providers,
- rental car expenses,
- time away from work,
- and any other expenses your accident has caused.
Insurance Company Tactics After a Huntsville Truck Accident
Insurance companies will do anything to keep from paying you the true value of your case. They may do things like:
- They will tape record you to get you to say something to hurt your case.
- They will lie about witnesses.
- They will tell you you are contributorily negligent(1%).
- They will offer you lowball settlements.
- They will lie about insurance coverage.
- Pressure you into taking a small settlement.
- Delaying any settlement to get you to take less money.
- They will hire a team of lawyers and accident reconstruction experts.
- They will do extensive discovery to drag out the case.
What is the Truck’s Black Box?
The “black box” contains information about the truck at the time of the crash, from the truck’s speed to the tire pressure to whether the brakes were applied before the accident. It is important to know about what the driver did and did not do before the accident. You also know the condition of the truck at the time of the crash. The National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) requires that all commercial trucks record and report certain information. A “black box” usually contains the Electronic Control Modules (ECM), Event Data Recorders (EDR), and Electronic Logging Devices (ELD). These devices preserve technical vehicle data and driver information about the truck and the driver.
Electronic Control Modules
All modern semitrucks contain ECMs, which track, control, and monitor the basic operations that allow a truck to safely transport cargo. ECMs record information about fuel efficiency, airbag systems, engine performance, and mechanical problems. EMCs also conduct diagnostic tests and notify truck drivers of any issues by illuminating various dashboard warning lights.
Electronic Logging Devices
ELDs enable commercial truck drivers to easily track their Hours of Service (HOS) in order to ensure they are in compliance with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) driving limits. All ELDs are required to display a trucker’s daily number of driving hours. They record and distinguish between the times when a truck is parked, idling, or in motion by automatically syncing with the truck’s engine. Finally, ELDs require that before truckers begin a driving segment, they must indicate whether their status is “on-duty,” “on-duty not driving,” or “off-duty.”
Event Data Recorders
EDRs record certain information in the event that the truck crashes or has a different type of accident. EDR’s recording function is triggered by a rapid and unnatural change in a truck’s velocity–such as when a tractor-trailer operator breaks suddenly or collides with an object that causes the truck’s airbag to deploy. EDRs preserve information about the truck and truck-driver in the seconds before, during, and after the collision. EDR’s record the following:
- Truck’s speed prior to and upon impact
- Vehicle’s precise GPS location
- Seat belt
- Steering angle
- Engine RPM
- Tire pressure
- Cruise control
- Monthly and daily activity
Hospitals Serving Huntsville and Madison County Alabama
People who are injured and require emergency care in and around Huntsville have many choices when it comes to medical care. If you have suffered serious trauma in your auto accidents you will normally be transported to one of the following hospitals. If you are in either hospital recovering from your injuries, we are available 24-7 to discuss your case. In most instances you will receive at least four bills when you are transported to one of these hospitals. The hospital bill, radiology bill, emergency physician bill and the ambulance bill. If necessary, you may receive other treatment and bills from orthopeadic surgeons and other physicians. You may be worried about how you will pay your medical bills and monthly bills. If necessary, we can connect you to companies that do low interest loans to cover your living expenses and medical bills while you recover. Our injury attorneys can help guide you through the process of recovering for your injuries. The hospitals in and around Huntsville are:
- Decatur Morgan Hospital
1874 Beltline Rd. S.W.
Phone: (256) 973-2000
- Decatur Morgan Hospital – Decatur Campus
1201 7th St. S.E.
Decatur, Alabama 35601
Phone: (256) 341-2000
- Huntsville Hospital
101 Sivley Rd SW
Huntsville, Alabama 25801
Phone: (256) 265-1000
- Crestwood Medical Center
One Hospital Drive
Huntsville, AL 35801
Phone: (256) 429-4000
- Athens Limestone Hospital
700 Market St W
Athens, AL 35611
Phone: (256) 233-9292
- Cullman Regional Medical Center
Cullman, AL 35058
Phone: (256) 737-2000
- Madison Hospital
8375 Hwy 72 W
Madison, AL 35758
Phone: (256) 265-2012
- Highlands Medical Center
380 Woods Cove Rd
Scottsboro, AL 35768
Phone: (256) 259-4444
- Marshall Medical Center North
Guntersville, AL 35976
Phone: (256) 571-8000
- Marshall Medical Center South
Boaz, AL 35957
Phone: (256) 593-8310
- North Alabama Medical Center
1701 Veterans Dr
Florence, AL 35630
Phone: (256) 629-1000
- DeKalb Regional Medical Center
200 Medical Center Dr SW
Fort Payne, AL 35968
Phone: (256) 845-3150
- Helen Keller Hospital
1300 South Montgomery Avenue
Phone: (256) 386-4196
- Lawrence Medical Center
202 Hospital Street
Moulton, AL 35650
Phone: (256) 974-2200
- Gadsden Medical Center
1007 Goodyear Ave
Gadsden, AL 35903
Phone: (256) 494-4000
What are the Most Common Semi Accident Injuries?
More than half of all accidents in in Alabama result in an injury to the driver or his or her passengers. If you or a loved one sustain injuries in a truck accident in Alabama, you and your loved ones have a right to be compensated for your injuries. Many of the injuries we see in trucking cases include the following:
- Burn injuries
- Catastrophic injuries
- Broken bones
- Eye injury
- Seatbelt injuries
- Chest injury
- Degloving injury
- Spinal cord injury
- Traumatic brain injury
- Wrongful death
- Soft tissue injuries
- Hip injuries
- Shoulder injuries
- Strained ligaments
- Back muscle sprains
- Scrapes and Cuts
- Broken ribs
- Internal injuries
- Jaw injuries
- Loss of teeth
- Neck injuries
- Crushed larynx
- Crushed trachea
- Broken neck
- Pelvic injuries
- Penetration injuries
Damages You Can Recover In A Huntsville Truck Accident
An individual who negligently operates a motor vehicle may be liable for a wide variety of damages that an accident can cause, including but not limited to the following:
- Disability and Disfigurement
- Loss of Consortium
- Medical Bills
- Lost Wages
- Mental and Emotional Distress
- Out of Pocket Expenses
- Pain and Suffering
- Property Damage
- Surgery and other medical treatment costs
- Rehabilitation fees and procedures
- Nursing home care costs
- Disfigurement and permanent scaring
- Loss of enjoyment of life
How Much Money Can I Recover
The amount of money you can recover in a truck accident depends on a number of different factors including the following:
- Cost of your medical treatment
- Wages you lost because of the accident
- Pain and suffering
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Emotional suffering
- Loss of consortium
- Insurance of liable party
- Your own uninsured/underinsured insurance
If you’ve been injured, an experienced trucking accident attorney can help you receive fair compensation for your injuries including lost wages, hospital bills, pain, suffering, and damages for loss of companionship, love, and comfort. If you have a wrongful death claim, we can recover only punitive damages in Alabama, but may recover for loss of earnings, medical and funeral bills, your family’s pain and suffering as well as the loss of love, guidance and support in other states.
How Long Do You Have to File a Truck Accident Claim in Alabama?
In Alabama, there is a general two-year statute of limitations. This means that you have two years from the date of the truck accident to file a lawsuit, or your case is gone forever. The statute is different if you are a minor. Even if you think the deadline to file your case might have passed, there may be other ways to extend the deadline. Talk to an attorney as soon as you can to preserve your claim.
Why Hire Truck Accident Lawyer Randy W. Ferguson
The law offices of Ferguson and Ferguson takes pride in giving each client individual and personal attention.
- We are committed to excellent client service.
- We have handled hundreds of truck accidents.
- We will not assign your case to another attorney.
- We care about our clients, and have patience.
- We review all onboard cameras
- We interview witnesses
- We hire accident reconstruction experts
- Review log bucks
- Obtain driver drug tests and employee file
- Obtain data from the truck’s Electronic Control Module (ECM; i.e. “black box”)
- We identify the party responsible for your injuries.
- We obtain your medical records and bills.
- We can help with financial assistance.
- We will help you get necessary medical treatment.
- We get your bills paid, reduced and/or eliminated.
- Free phone consultation 24/7.
- Free office consultation as late as 7 p.m. and Saturdays.
- Two locations near you.
- We answer all our clients calls, or return them promptly.
- We make sure that our clients understand each step of their case.
- We have great compassion for the physical, emotional, and financial problems that our clients suffered, and will do everything possible to get them through their difficult time.
Trucking companies and automobile insurance companies have teams of lawyers, claims adjusters, and almost unlimited resources to fight injury claims. Their job is to deny, delay and defend against your truck or car accident claim. Our Huntsville, Alabama truck accident attorneys have the knowledge, experience, and resources to take on large corporations and insurance companies. If you retain our trucking accident firm, we will do everything ethically and legally possible to recover the money you deserve to compensate you for your damages and losses. When a eighteen wheeler or trucking tragedy has struck you or your loved ones, you need a nationally known trucking accident attorney who knows the rules and knows how to get the most for your claim. The investigation and legal issues in truck wreck cases are often complex. It is vitally important to quickly hire a qualified Alabama trial lawyer who can act fast to collect the evidence of the trucking company’s negligence. At the Alabama trucking law firm of Ferguson & Ferguson, our extensive experience in handling semi tractor -trailer crashes means that we know what to look for when conducting an investigation, and what is fair compensation for your injuries.
Frequently Asked Questions
These are some of our most frequently asked questions:
Do I need a lawyer after a truck accident?
In a truck accident case, you are dealing with a team of insurance trucking adjusters and attorneys. There job is to pay you as little as possible. Contact an experienced truck accident lawyer who will give you a free consultation.
Should I accept a settlement?
If you are injured, you should never accept a settlement from an insurance company before talking to an attorney. Insurance companies try to pay out as little money as possible in every case. An attorney can usually get you a much bigger settlement.
What injuries are most common from truck accidents?
People injured in truck accidents in Alabama often sustain serious and often deadly injuries. Other common injuries from truck wrecks can include neck injuries, herniated discs, broken bones and brain injuries.
How much does a truck accident lawyer cost?
We never charge a fee up front. We only get paid if we win your case. All consultations are free.
What should I do after my accident?
Call the police and do a report. Notify your insurance company. Take pictures of the accident scene and your injuries. Get medical treatment. Call our office.
What is contributory negligence?
Contributory negligence is defined as negligence on the part of the victim that proximately contributes to their own injuries. If you are found to be guilty of contributory negligence, you cannot recover against the other party for your injuries.
What should I do if someone from the trucking company calls me before I’ve picked a truck accident lawyer?
Do not agree to do a recorded statement for the trucking company or their insurance carrier. Never sign any forms sent to you by the trucking company or their insurance carrier. Never settle your case. Call now for a free consultation.
What should I do in the days following a truck accident?
After a truck accident:
- Stay At the Scene Of the Collision
- Call 9-1-1 For Emergency Services
- Check Other Vehicles For Injuries if Possible
- Take Photos, Capture Videos & Record Audio of Evidence
- Exchange Contact Info, Insurance Details, Drivers License
- Don’t Making Any Statements About Accident
- Get a Copy of the Accident Report
- Have Your Vehicle Damage Inspected
- Get Medical Treatment and keep track of all doctor’s visits and treatment. Keep copies of all Test Results, Medication Prescriptions and any other relevant medical information
- Keep a list of all out-of-pocket Expenses
- Keep Record of all missed work
- Do not talk to the Insurance Company
- Stay off Social Media
- Call Ferguson & Ferguson
Experienced Huntsville Alabama Trucking Accident Lawyers
If you’ve been injured, an experienced Huntsville truck accident lawyer can help you receive fair compensation for your injuries including lost wages, hospital bills, pain, suffering, and damages for loss of companionship, love, and comfort. The Huntsville, Alabama attorneys and staff at Ferguson & Ferguson will help you in the event you have been injured, no matter what the cause. We understand that personal injuries and deaths not only cause physical pain and suffering, but also emotional and financial disaster through loss of a steady paycheck, mounting medical bills, and tremendous stress place upon injured individuals and their families. That is why it is always important to ensure you hire the right personal injury firm, if you are struggling to understand personal injury and are unsure about what law firm to hire then you can read personal injury law: what you need to know, and educate yourself if you want to do a little bit of research yourself! However, if you do have any questions then you can contact us and we are more than happy to accommodate any queries that you may have! Our trucking accident attorneys assist clients in Decatur, Athens, Cullman, Huntsville, Birmingham, Atlanta, Nashville and often throughout the United States in the pursuit of serious truck accident claims. If you or a loved one has been injured in a trucking accident, call now. Call 256-534-3435 or 256-350-7200.
Never a Fee Unless We Win
At Ferguson & Ferguson, all of our trucking cases are handled on a contingency fee arrangement, sometimes known as a no win, no fee arrangement. For all of our trucking clients, we offer a free attorney consultation, either over the phone, at our office, or at your home or hospital room. If we represent you, we will not charge any up-front retainers or fees. We advance all costs on your behalf, and we are only paid if and when a settlement or verdict is reached. In the event we represent you and are unable to recover a verdict or settlement, you will owe nothing. We represent victims of large truck accidents throughout the state of Alabama, including Huntsville, Birmingham, Montgomery, Mobile, Decatur, and Tuscaloosa. To contact the Alabama truck accident injury law firm of Ferguson & Ferguson, call us at (800)752-1998, or fill out our consultation request form, and an attorney will be happy to review your case. Our lawyers have more than 45 years of experience in trucking accident litigation and are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to discuss your potential case. Call now. Call 256-534-3435 or 256-350-7200.
Huntsville Office Location:
303 Williams Avenue SW
Huntsville, AL 35801
Decatur Office Location:
211 Oak Street NE
Decatur, AL 35601
- American Trucking Associations – The ATA serves as an advocate for the trucking industry, providing information and research on the trucking industry (including highway and truck driver safety).
- Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance – Organization made up of industry representatives and safety officials from various governmental entities, offering research and suggestions to help standardize truck safety measures throughout North America.
- Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration – Division of the U.S. Department of Transportation, offering safety programs, regulations, and facts related to the prevention of commercial motor vehicle-related injuries and fatalities.
- Insurance Information Institute – Highway safety section includes information on vehicle safety, insurance, and more.
- Insurance Institute for Highway Safety / Highway Loss Data Institute – The “large trucks” section features fatality statistics, regulatory policies, safety ratings, and related safety information.
- Commercial Motor Vehicle Traffic Enforcement (NHTSA) – In-depth information about the enforcement of commercial vehicle safety laws and regulations, and their enforcement.
- National Safety Council: Safety on the Road – General information about defensive driving, focusing on the road, and other safety considerations for motorists.
- Commercial Vehicles (AAA Exchange) – Truck safety education and advocacy organization created by AAA, with information about the causes of truck accidents and safety tips.
Our truck accident attorneys serve every city and county in the State of Alabama.