Interesting Facts About Semi Truck Accidents in Arizona

Although commercial truck accidents are not as talked about as traditional passenger vehicle collisions, they often cause more serious damages. The law states that any vehicle carrying over 10,000 pounds are considered trucks, but often times these trucks carry much more. Sometimes trucks can weigh up to 80,000 pounds.

Compared to a 3,000-pound passenger vehicle, the large size and weight of a commercial truck can do much more damage, cause more serious injuries, and frequently even death when involved in an auto accident. If the truck is carrying hazardous or bulky items, the risk of fatalities and injuries in the event of an accident increases drastically.

The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, or IIHS, reports that over half a million trucks were involved in accidents in the U.S. in 2010 alone, resulting in about 100,000 serious injuries and over 5,000 deaths. In 2009, only 3,200 deaths were caused by commercial truck accidents. As the number of trucks on the roads increase, the number of fatalities due to truck accidents will increase as well.

With many truck accidents, there is someone at fault. If the accident was clearly caused by the actions of another individual and a death or serious injury resulted, the victim or victim’s surviving family members may be able to receive financial damages for everything from medical expenses, pain and suffering, loss of income, or other opportunities that were taken away as a result of the accident.

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If you were involved in a Semi Truck Accident, give us a call. We’re available to discuss your case and review the possible maximum compensation you deserve.

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Arizona Commercial and Semi Truck Accident Lawyer

Semi-Truck Accidents and Negligence

In the legal world, a truck accident includes an incident or series of events involving a vehicle with a weight greater than 10,000 pounds that resulted in property damage, bodily injury, and/or death. Although these accidents are usually caused by one party or another, in order for the victim to receive compensation from the truck driver, the truck accident must meet the following criteria:

  1. The truck accident was a result of fault and/or recklessness of another driver
  2. The injury or death of the victim was a result of the truck accident
  3. The injuries resulted in compensable damages

There are several ways to prove that negligence was at fault and will be crucial for proving the fault of the driver and receiving damages. Acceptable forms of evidence include police reports, photographs, and expert or witness testimonies. Additional forms of evidence that may be accepted include proof that the driver was operating his truck while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or showed signs of additional impairment, like driving with a lack of sleep.

A truck accident lawyer can help you determine if negligence is present in your case.

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Common Causes of Arizona Truck Accidents

The causes behind accidents vary and it is difficult to explain how things happen. Usually, each accident comes from a variety of circumstances and a combination of contributing factors, all resulting in the truck collision.

But, we can say that most accidents occur because a driver was not following safe driving habits and violating the law. One of the most common factors of truck accidents includes speeding, but other accidents may be caused by truck drivers failing to yield, making unsafe turns, and changing lanes or driving too closely to another vehicle.

Because commercial trucks are bigger and heavier than standard passenger cars, the risk associated with reckless driving is much greater. These commercial trucks carry a lot of weight, which requires faster reactions and more time and effort to make corrective changes.

According to studies, many Arizona truck accidents are caused by driver error. When a truck driver makes a mistake, his reaction time is delayed due to the mass of the vehicle. Driver error is also contributed to fatigue or sleepiness, intoxication, reckless driving, improper loading, or lack of training.

The most frequent cause of driver error is fatigue. Because truck drivers spend most of their day behind a wheel, it is easy for them to start to doze off. To ensure only safe drivers are on the road, truck drivers are required to stop driving after 14 hours of consecutive driving and cannot log more than 60 driving hours in a seven-day period. Additionally, they must take a 34-hour break after spending seven or eight days on the road.

Some truck accidents are the result of equipment failure. To reduce the amount of these kinds of accidents, commercial truck companies or truck owners must perform regular maintenance of their trucks in accordance to a strict schedule, including inspection of the brakes, fuel line, wheels and tires, engine, lightening, chassis, and hitches.

Negligence is not the only cause of truck accidents. Collisions can also be the result of poor road conditions or faulty road design. If a road is not properly maintained or is designed strangely, the government may be to blame for the accident and not the driver.


Truck Accident Injuries

The injuries that result in truck accidents are usually very serious or fatal. Those that do survive a crash might face a lifetime of permanent disabilities like brain injury or paralysis.

Here are some of the most common injuries associated with truck accidents:

Brain Injury

Traumatic brain injury often results when objects make direct contact with the head, or if the head makes a dramatic movement that causes the brain to bounce against the walls of the skull.

Spinal Injury

A spinal injury can happen in the lower spine or neck and often result in permanent total or partial paralysis.

Back Injury

A herniated disc injury will require years of physical therapy to restore.

Burns

Burns can cause permanent disfiguring and pain.

Fractures, lacerations and contusions

While more minor than many other injuries, broken bones, cuts, and bruises are the most common and usually come with more serious injuries.


Getting Legal Help from an Arizona Truck Accident Lawyer

If you or a loved one has been injured by a truck accident, contact a truck accident lawyer at Hutzler Law for assistance. We will review your case from top to bottom and come up with the best course of action to make sure you receive the best possible outcome.

4 Common Motorcycle Injury Questions in Arizona

Accidents involving motorcycles are some of the most serious crashes on Arizona roads. The standard design of a motorcycle offers very minimal protection from impact with other vehicles. Potential issues that may contribute to, or cause, a motorcycle accident include driver error, improper traffic control devices, poorly designed roadways, vehicle design, and tire wear and defects.

More often than not, there are compounding causes of an accident, not simply one single cause. Although there are numerous tips to prevent injury from motorcycle accidents, this makes determining the cause of a motorcycle injury an extremely complicated process.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were close to 5,000 motorcyclists killed in 2018. While that number is decreasing almost 5% from previous years, it still poses as a staggering number. The NHTSA published a document that shows even more shocking motorcycle crash statistics. There is a silver lining however if you or a loved one has been involved in an accident.

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Have you in an accident and suffered a motorcycle injury? Give us a call, we’re available day or night.

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The following are common questions that we have been asked while representing motorcycle injury cases:

Broken leg from accident

1. The day after my accident I can hardly move. Is it too late to file a claim for my injuries?

In short, the answer to your question is “no”, it is not too late to file a claim if you have not done so already. If, on the night of the accident, you provided a statement to the responding officer and said that you were all right; do not be concerned. This is common and is not a significant obstacle to face when recovering from your injuries. When your body sustains trauma, it is not unusual for you to feel “fine” immediately following the accident. It could take several hours for your body to recognize the symptoms of an injury.

It is for this very reason that most emergency rooms will issue instructions upon releasing patients. The instructions will advise the patient or caregiver to keep an eye out for various symptoms that could indicate that their condition is worsening. Should they encounter these symptoms, they should immediately return to the hospital to be examined. It is a commonly accepted notion that symptoms present as minor, and then increase in severity as time progresses. Examples of injuries that present with minimal symptoms and then worsen over time include the swelling of the brain and the swelling of the discs in your back.


Neck and Back Pain from Motorcycle Accident

2. What if several weeks have passed, and I am just now beginning to experience pain in my back and neck?

This is an extremely common phenomenon, especially if you also experienced another trauma at the time of the accident such as an injury to an arm or a leg. When in an accident, your brain has to quickly process a large amount of information. It may only register initial, immediate, or visible pain, such as scrapes, bruises, and broken bones.

You may not be completely aware that a more serious back or neck injury has occurred. Also, because your entire body is most likely very sore, it may take weeks for the back and neck injury symptoms to be distinguishable from the other pains. At this point, the weakened body part may have given out completely due to the strain of constantly being used while injured.


Motorcycle Accident Head Injury from Not Wearing Helmet

3. What if I was not wearing my helmet when the accident occurred?

There is currently no regulation in the state of Arizona that requires you to wear a helmet while operating a motorcycle, so you have not violated any laws. Even so, if this is the case you will want to find a competent and experienced motorcycle accident lawyer to handle your claim. The insurance company may pose the argument that by not wearing a helmet you have contributed to your own injuries. You would then be considered partially at fault for your accident. This implication may possibly reduce the amount of money you can receive for your claim.

The insurance company is likely unable to make this argument for most bodily injuries because they would still have occurred even if you were wearing your helmet. A motorcycle accident lawyer who has encountered this situation before will be able to argue your claim more adequately and successfully than one who has not. They will be able to recover all of the funds you deserve.


Passenger in a Motorcycle Accident

4. What if I was only a passenger, and a friend or family member was driving the motorcycle?

In a perfect world, every driver would be insured, and you would collect compensation for your injuries directly from the insurance company. If they do not have auto insurance you can take them to court personally in order to collect for expenses incurred such as medical bills, damages, and pain and suffering. It is rarely a pleasant experience when suing a friend or a family member, but someone will need to pay for your injuries.

Even if your friend or family member was found to be at fault for the accident, you should still be adequately compensated as a passenger in an accident. One possible setback is if they had purchased an insurance policy that has a “family member exclusion” written directly into the policy. This may limit the amount that you are able to recover for your claim.


Contact a Motorcycle Injury Lawyer for a Free Consultation

If you were involved in a motorcycle accident as either the driver or passenger, even if you were at fault or not, give the legal team at Hutzler Law a call immediately. We will spend 30-60 minutes during a free consultation to go over your case from top to bottom and come up with the best-case scenario in getting you the maximum compensation for your injuries. Call Hutzler Law today at 602-730-4530 and we can immediately assist you.