With major throughways like Interstate 85 and U.S. 74 traversing Cleveland County, drivers here must share the road with thousands of semi-trucks and other large commercial vehicles. Unfortunately, all these trucks on the road also lead to truck accidents. According to the North Carolina Department of Transportation, nearly 3,000 collisions involved commercial vehicles in Cleveland County in just one recent year.
If you were injured in a truck accident in Cleveland County, North Carolina, you are not alone, and help is at hand. The experienced attorneys at the law firm of Teddy, Meekins & Talbert, P.L.L.C., have represented many injured people in Cleveland County and secured compensation for them from negligent truck drivers, trucking companies, and other at-fault parties. We know how to investigate an accident thoroughly to establish all liable parties, negotiate aggressively for a fair settlement, and go to court if it becomes the best way to get our clients the full recovery they deserve.
Contact Teddy, Meekins & Talbert, P.L.L.C., today to speak with one of our Cleveland County truck accident lawyers about your case. We are happy to answer your questions in a free consultation.
Why Are Cleveland County Truck Accident Cases So Complex?
Cleveland County truck accidents are more complex than the average two-car fender bender for the following reasons:
- Severe injuries – The fully loaded 18-wheeler can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds. In a collision, something of that size and mass can wreak havoc on the occupants of almost any passenger vehicle, resulting in severe injuries that require long-term, expensive medical care and rehabilitation.
- Higher insurance limits – Most commercial trucking insurance policies include at least $1 million in liability coverage. More severe injuries mean a lot of money is at stake. Count on insurance companies to put up a tough fight in an attempt to minimize what they have to pay out.
- Multi-party trucking industry – The trucking industry comprises multiple parties, including the driver, the trucking company that employs the driver, the company that loads the truck, the owners of the truck and trailer, maintenance companies, the truck manufacturer, and more. With so many potentially liable parties, it is challenging to pinpoint which party is responsible for an accident. Furthermore, each party often has their own insurance, and their insurance company will almost certainly try to blame someone else.
- Complex web of regulations – The trucking industry must comply with federal and state regulations, making it difficult to know precisely which regulation may be pertinent to an accident.
- Different types of evidence – Event data recorders (EDRs) are installed on most commercial trucks. These devices record information such as pre-crash vehicle dynamics and system status, driver inputs, and post-crash data. While this data can be critical to a truck accident case, you’ll likely need an experienced attorney to get the data from the trucking company and an expert witness to analyze it.
Why You Need a Lawyer After a Truck Accident
After a truck accident in Cleveland County, you may be hurting physically, financially, and emotionally. You may be ill-equipped to pursue a legal case to hold the at-fault party responsible for your injuries. That’s why you need to hire a truck accident attorney to help you through this difficult time.
While you are recovering from your injuries, your attorney can handle issues like the following:
- Investigating the cause of the accident and the identity of the at-fault party
- Gathering the evidence necessary to prove the at-fault party’s negligence
- Evaluating your legal options for maximum compensation
- Quantifying your current and future accident-related losses
- Negotiating with insurance companies for a fair settlement
- Filing a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault parties
- Fighting for your right to compensation in court if a fair settlement cannot be reached
Causes and Types of Truck Accidents in Cleveland County
According to a causation study by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), investigators coded truck driver error as a factor in about 48% of all truck accidents involving death or injury. Driver error was further divided into the following four categories:
- Non-performance – Accounting for 12 percent of truck-coded accidents, non-performance includes falling asleep or suffering a medical impairment.
- Recognition – Recognition includes inattentiveness, distractions, and failure to recognize hazardous situations. It accounts for 28 percent of truck-coded accidents.
- Decision – The truck driver’s decisions, such as driving too fast or following too closely, caused 38 percent of truck-coded accidents.
- Performance – The truck driver’s performance, including panicking or overcompensating, caused nine percent of truck-coded accidents.
Other causes of truck accidents include the following:
- Truck malfunction, such as brake problems or tire blowouts
- Inclement weather conditions, including fog, rain, snow, and ice
- Drug or alcohol use
- Roadway hazards, such as debris in the roadway or construction zones
Our Cleveland County truck accident attorneys have years of experience investigating various types of accidents, including the following:
- Rollover accidents
- Rear-end collisions
- Head-on collisions
- Jackknife accidents
- Underride accidents
- Wide turn accidents
- Sideswipe accidents
- T-bone accidents
- Unsecured cargo accidents
Common Injuries Caused by Truck Wrecks in Cleveland County
Cleveland County truck wrecks can leave accident victims with severe, life-changing injuries, such as:
- Broken bones
- Soft tissue injuries, such as muscle strains and sprains
- Back injuries
- Crushed or pinned limb injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
Time Limit for Filing a Truck Accident Lawsuit in Cleveland County
According to North Carolina’s statute of limitations, truck accident victims have three years from the accident date to bring a lawsuit for their accident-related injuries. While three years may seem like plenty of time, this is not an opportunity to procrastinate. Preparing an ironclad lawsuit takes months, and waiting too long makes it harder to discover essential evidence. If you are still debating whether to file a lawsuit, contact our attorneys to evaluate your options as soon as possible.
Talk to a Truck Accident Lawyer in Cleveland County Now
When Cleveland County truck accident victims need an attorney to fight for their rights, they turn to Teddy, Meekins & Talbert, P.L.L.C., for help. We know how to handle a case to seek the maximum compensation possible for our clients. Contact our Cleveland County truck accident lawyers today for a free consultation.