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Do’s and Don’ts for Dallas Truck Accident Victims

— March 21, 2022

Soon after a truck accident, you can expect a call from the trucking company’s insurer. That’s not a courtesy call.

The Texas Department of Transportation recorded 32,562 accidents involving commercial vehicles in 2020. 581 people lost their lives and thousands were wounded as a result. In Dallas alone, dozens of people are killed and hundreds injured in truck accidents every single year. 

If you or someone you love were involved in such an accident, you need to contact an experienced Dallas truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. 

Seek medical attention

When you’re in an accident your number one priority is to seek medical attention for you or for any other person at the scene. Even if you don’t think you were badly injured and believe any pain will go away in a couple of days, it is essential that you see a doctor. Some internal injuries take time to manifest themselves. If, for instance, you’ve suffered some spine damage, it might be weeks before you start feeling pain in your legs. The problem is that, if you don’t see a doctor right away, later on it might be hard to prove that you were injured in the crash. That’s how the insurance company will see it. If you cannot produce medical documents, seasoned insurance adjusters will claim that your back problems have nothing to do with the accident so you’re not entitled to receive damages from them.

Don’t talk to the insurance company

Texas motorists involved in regular accidents, those between passenger cars, rely on their insurance to recover damages. Soon after a truck accident, you can expect a call from the trucking company’s insurer. That’s not a courtesy call, they’re not calling to inquire about your health, but about your intentions. Specifically, they want to know if you blame the truck driver or the company for what happened and if you intend to file a claim against them. Do not offer them any details and, above all, do not talk about the accident. Keep in mind that anything you tell them can and will be used against you when it’s time to settle the claim.

Have your truck accident lawyer investigate the crash

When you retain a truck accident lawyer they will request the police report to see what the official version of the accident looks like. Next, they will send a demand for preservation of evidence to the trucking company. This refers to the recordings on the electronic driver’s log device on board the truck. These electronic devices register how many hours the driver had been on the road. This is very important if your lawyer believes driver fatigue might have played a role in the accident.

Mechanic working on car; image by DokaRyan, via
Mechanic working on car; image by DokaRyan, via

Under federal regulations, commercial drivers cannot drive for more than 11 hours in one shift, after which they need to take a 10-hour break. If the company put pressure on the driver to get to the destination as fast as possible and his reactions were impaired because of that, you have a case against the trucking company.

Your lawyer will want to see the technical examination report for the truck to see if there was any mechanical failure. If the truck had faulty brakes or the steering system malfunctioned, once again you have a case against the company, which is responsible for the maintenance of its vehicles. 

If you file a claim against the truck driver’s insurance, you cannot expect to get a lot of money, probably not enough to cover you medical bills, let alone your lost wages, On the other hand, trucking companies are required to carry mandatory insurance of $750,000, which should be enough to compensate you for all your losses.

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