Truck Accident Lawsuit in Overland Park

Semi-Truck Accident Basics | Truck Accident Lawsuit in Overland Park

A semi-truck driving on the highway during a sunset before a truck accident lawsuit in Overland Park

This blog will detail truck accident basics, commonly asked questions about tractor-trailer accidents, and the attributes to look for when considering a semi-truck accident lawyer to litigate the case.

Semi-Truck Accident Considerations

While trucks are an essential part of our economy, they sometimes pose a threat to other drivers. This is often due to:

  • Semi-truck size 
  • Tractor-trailer load
  • Possibility of driver fatigue

Truck Accident Statistics

With more home deliveries and direct-to-consumer purchases, more trucks are on the roads than ever before; it’s likely unsurprising that more truck accidents happen. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that in 2021, 5,788 people were killed in traffic accidents involving trucks*, a 17% increase from 4,945 in 2020. This report also noted that:

  • An estimated 154,993 people were injured in traffic crashes involving large trucks.
  • 72% of people killed in large truck accidents were occupants of other vehicles.
  • Large truck drivers who were involved in fatal accidents in 2021 had a higher percentage of previously recorded accidents when compared to other drivers (large truck drivers, 20.8%; motorcycles, 19.9%; passenger cars, 18.2%; and light trucks, 17.2%).

*According to the NHTSA, its fact sheet defines “large truck” as “any medium or heavy truck, excluding buses and motorhomes, with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) greater than 10,000 pounds. These large trucks include both commercial and non-commercial vehicles. In 2021 [71] percent of the large trucks involved in fatal traffic crashes were heavy trucks (GVWR > 26,000 lbs.).”

Large Truck Accident FAQ

While all semi-truck accidents are unique, they have some similarities. Our FAQ examines these commonalities and how they can apply to people and families who may be considering hiring a truck accident lawyer in Overland Park:

Are truck accident injuries more serious?

Oftentimes, tractor-trailer accidents are more serious than a collision with another standard-size vehicle. This is typically because of a semi-truck’s size and weight. A tractor-trailier’s size and speed could cause life-altering injuries that require long-term medical care or even result in death, either of which could lead to a truck accident lawsuit in Overland Park. The following are just some of the injuries that a person harmed by a large truck accident may experience:

Head Injuries

Head injuries could cause a permanent disability or lead to death. The following are some of the more common serious head injuries people suffer after being involved in large truck accidents:

  • Concussions: A traumatic brain injury resulting from a jolt, blow, or bump to the head. Concussions often happen during crashes because of forceful, sudden movements.
  • Brain contusions: Cerebral contusions (a bruise to the brain) occur when a person experiences head trauma. A person could sustain these injuries in a crash due to a sudden movement, a high-speed collision, contact with part of the vehicle, such as the steering wheel, or through airbag deployment.
  • Skull fractures: These injuries can lead to bone fragments damaging brain tissue, brain bleeding, nerve damage, brain swelling, and more. These injuries can occur when the head hits an object with force.
Spinal Cord Injuries 

The spinal cord is responsible for brain-body communication, and any injuries it sustains have the potential to be devastating. The following are injuries associated with truck accidents:

  • Paralysis: An individual can experience different types of paralysis, such as localized paralysis, which affects a small section of the body, or generalized paralysis, which involves larger areas.
  • Spinal fractures: The vertebrae in the spine may also break due to collisions with semi-trucks. These bone breaks can lead to impaired mobility, chronic pain, neurological issues, and loss of certain bodily functions. 
Other Serious Injuries

While this is not an exhaustive list, the following are other serious injuries people may experience as a result of a collision with a semi-truck:

  • Amputations
  • Broken bones
  • Internal bleeding
  • Whiplash
  • Psychological trauma

What are the most common causes of truck accidents?

While trucking companies must follow the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s regulations for truck safety, businesses sometimes fail to enforce rules. These oversights could lead to accidents and expose trucking companies to a possible truck accident lawsuit in Overland Park. Most commonly, tractor-trailer accidents are a result of:

  • Traffic law violations or speed
  • Driving with overweight freight or unsecured cargo
  • Driver fatigue
  • Equipment failure
  • Distracted driving
  • Improper hiring of drivers, training, supervision, safety policies, or trailer maintenance
  • Unsafe driving conditions

Unfortunately, trucking companies can place undue pressure on their drivers to meet unrealistic requirements, increasing the risk they pose on the road. Meaning, if the driver has only the minimum amount of downtime or minimum amount of payment, they are incentivized to work “harder,” not smarter or safer. Trucking companies can easily anticipate the dangers they create for their drivers, which translate to dangers to the public.

If I’ve experienced a truck accident, what do I do?

Immediately After an Accident
  • It’s essential to call 911 immediately after a truck accident and report the crash. 
  • Not all injuries are obvious, so it’s important to quickly be seen by a medical provider even if there are no visible injuries. 
  • Next, if able and safe to do so, move the car to the side of the road. This can reduce the risk of being involved in another accident. Once the vehicle is moved, turn on its hazard lights and walk away from the car to maintain a safe distance from the road. 
  • If possible, try to collect the information of the person(s) involved in the crash and any witnesses. This could include names, contact information, license plate numbers, and insurance information. Also, if safe to do so, try to take photos or videos of the accident. This could include injuries, vehicle damage, road conditions, license plates, tire skid marks, and vehicle positions. 
Once Help Arrives

The medical team and police will have questions about the accident. The information provided will help them accurately document the accident and ensure correct medical care is given.

Once able, consider contacting a lawyer with truck accident litigation experience. Qualified lawyers can understand the details of a truck accident lawsuit in Overland Park, including ensuring your rights are adequately protected. 

How are large truck accident cases handled? 

Handling a trucking crash is not a simple undertaking. It requires tremendous effort and experience. Generally, clients greatly benefit from hiring an attorney soon after the crash. While this may not always be possible because people are often picking up the pieces of their lives, critical evidence needs to be preserved directly following the crash. So, time is of the essence.  

A shot from behind of a man driving in front of a bus before a truck accident lawsuit in Overland Park

Pursuing a Semi-Truck Accident Lawsuit in Overland Park

Catastrophic trucking accidents require the experience of truck accident lawyers who understand the complexities of these cases. Tractor-trailer accident cases often require experience to litigate, the resources to hire experts to overcome the defense, and the drive to hold all parties involved accountable. 

Generally, responsible parties in a semi-truck accident could include:

  • The truck driver
  • The company that hired the driver
  • The company that owns the cargo
  • The company that commissioned the trip
  • The company that owns the trailer or the truck
  • The municipality responsible for the road conditions 

Why work with a truck accident attorney?

Deciding which attorney to work with to handle a truck accident lawsuit in Overland Park is an important decision. Truck accidents often involve many potential defendants and require experienced truck accident attorneys to litigate. Individuals will likely benefit if they choose to work with an attorney who has the following qualities: 

Truck Accident Lawsuit Litigation Experience

It’s essential that attorneys with semi-truck accident experience are the ones who handle trucking cases. Attorneys are like doctors because they can be very specialized; a primary care provider does not perform brain surgery. Similarly, a generalized attorney or an attorney who does not handle complex litigation is not adequately equipped to handle a trucking case.  

Exceptional Resources and Structure 

Semi-truck accident cases are a team effort. These cases need to be handled by experienced truck accident lawyers and legal support staff. Although these cases may seem straightforward, they require an experienced legal team to be successful.

Experienced truck accident attorneys are also best equipped to handle the complexities involved in these cases. This experience is essential when navigating issues that may arise if an insurance company tries to pay less than fair value. 

Compatibility and Trust

These cases often take time and focus to litigate. Therefore, an individual should feel comfortable with the partnership and be certain that their attorney can handle their case before beginning to work together.

Consider Having Bartimus Frickleton Robertson Rader Handle Your Truck Accident Lawsuit in Overland Park

The lawyers at Bartimus Frickleton Robertson Rader understand that truck accident litigation requires vigorous representation and experience. When we represent an individual or a family after a trucking accident, we devote the time, resources, and experience to achieving the best possible result for a truck accident lawsuit in Overland Park. 

For more than 40 years, the attorneys at BFRR have successfully represented some of the region’s most high-profile and high-stakes cases. Although we are centrally located, we have a national impact.

If you or a loved one suffered an injury after a trucking accident, contact our personal injury lawyers today for a consultation at no cost. 

The above is not intended to be legal advice. Each individual case is different and must be analyzed on its own set of facts and circumstances. If you believe you may have a case, it is critically important that you timely contact a lawyer to ensure your rights are protected.