The trucking industry is taking America’s roads by storm. By some estimates, there are 15.5 million trucks that operate in the United States, approximately 2 million of which are tractor trailers. Commercial trucks play an instrumental role in the U.S. economy, with trucks delivering nearly 70 percent of all freight transported annually in the U.S.
Unfortunately, trucking accidents also account for about 2.4 percent of the total motor vehicle accidents in the U.S. each year. Despite the fact that commercial trucking accidents comprise a relatively small percentage of the overall number of motor vehicle accidents each year, trucking accidents have a greater chance of causing injuries and fatalities. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were over 4,200 fatalities from motor vehicle accidents involving large trucks in 2008, with the vast majority of these fatalities (nearly 75%) as the occupants of the non-truck vehicle in the collision.
Nuances of Interstate Trucking Accidents
Given the nature of the trucking industry as an interstate transportation business, interstate trucking accidents can pose a number of complex legal issues. For instance, interstate trucking accidents not only present issues of liability and negligence, but they may also pose complications regarding:
- Shipping/Trucking Worker Injuries – Is the trucker, trucking company, shipper, or other party liable?
- Third party liability – Could a cause of action also be brought against a third party?
- Contributory negligence – Was the plaintiff also negligent?
- Jurisdiction and venue – In what state, and in which court, can the lawsuit be filed?
- Which laws apply – Do state negligence laws apply or do the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations also apply?
Because interstate trucking accidents present a number of unique legal issues and factual complications, it is important to enlist the help of an experienced trucking accident attorney. The Chicago trucking accident attorneys at Ankin Law Office, LLC have considerable experience handling serious trucking accident lawsuits and we are well-versed in the legal nuances that interstate trucking accident lawsuits involve.
Legal Obligations of Trucking Companies and Truck Drivers
Trucking companies and truck drivers have certain obligations to prevent accidents on the roadway, and if they fail to comply with those obligations, they could be liable for an injuries or damages in a personal injury lawsuit. For instance, trucking companies are obligated to maintain their vehicles in safe working condition. Truck drivers are responsible for obeying the rules of the road and operating their vehicles in a safe manner.
Contact Us for a Free Consultation
If you or a loved one has been injured in a trucking accident, contact the skilled Chicago trucking accident attorneys at Ankin Law Offices at (312) 600-0000 to schedule a free consultation to discuss your legal rights and remedies following a trucking accident.