Cross & Smith LLC

Birmingham Truck Accident Lawyers

Help After Collisions with Tractor Trailers, 18-Wheelers and More

Cross & Smith is a team of seasoned lawyers and professional staff experienced in Birmingham truck and 18 wheeler accidents. Through diligent representation and insistence on quality service, we have earned a reputation for excellence in Birmingham, Alabama. With over 20 years of experience in more than 850 personal injury suits, our Birmingham truck accident attorneys remain dedicated to helping victims of negligence throughout the state of Alabama.

Common Causes of Birmingham Truck Accidents

Trucks and tractor-trailers are known as commercial carriers because they are used in interstate commerce. Their capacity to transport heavy loads of cargo makes them essential to trade within and between states. But trucks and 18-wheelers also cause some of the most gruesome accidents on the road. Traveling at moderate speeds on state highways, these trucks are difficult for normal drivers to see and maneuver around. This is why truck collisions usually involve not only one, but several vehicles, and some form of injury. Truck accidents may be caused by:

  • Jackknifes and rollovers
  • Truck driver intoxication
  • Fatigue, driving overtime
  • Unsecured tractor-trailers
  • Improper loading of cargo
  • Fires, large chemical spills
  • Obscured vision, blind spot
  • Failure to inspect, maintain vehicle

The large presence of trucks on the road indicates a recovering economy and booming trade. But the accidental injuries and fatalities caused by truck accidents will continue to increase as the vehicles become used more and more in Birmingham and other parts of Alabama.

Injuries Sustained in Accidents Involving Large Trucks

All accidents can lead to serious injury or death, but accidents involving large trucks are more likely to have catastrophic injuries. The main reason for this is the sheer difference in vehicle size. A fully-loaded 18- wheeler can weigh up to 80,000 lbs, while the average car weighs approximately 4,000 lbs. When the two collide, the passengers of the smaller vehicle rarely escape without serious injury. 

Another reason injuries sustained in large truck accidents are typically more serious is due to the cargo being transported by the truck. Large trucks are responsible for carrying hazardous and sometimes flammable materials. These materials can cause a fire to erupt during a collision, or sometimes just the fumes from the materials is enough to cause inhalation injuries. 

Investigations & Liability of Accidents Involving Large Trucks

The investigation into what caused an accident involving a large truck can be very complex as there is often more than one party at fault. Parties that may be found liable in these accidents include:

  • Truck Driver: The driver of the truck may be responsible for the accident. Testing for evidence of drugs and alcohol is often conducted to determine if they were a contributing factor. 
  • Truck Owner (Carrier): Carriers may be responsible for the accident. For example, they may not have the truck regularly maintained to ensure it is in good working condition. 
  • Truck Designer: A truck must be designed in a way that is safe. When the design in some way contributes to the cause of an accident, the designer may be held liable. 
  • Manufacturer of the Truck or Individual Parts: Even if the design of the truck is faultless, if it is not constructed as designed, the manufacturer may be responsible for a resulting accident. This is also true of the individual parts.  

It is important to retain a Tuscaloosa auto accident attorney as soon as possible after the accident, so that the investigation into the cause of the accident, as well as the liability of the parties, may be determined. In complicated cases involving multiple parties, it may even be necessary to hire an expert to reconstruct the accident to assist in determining cause and liability. 

Liability for Commercial Carriers

Because a network of state and federal laws govern the operation of commercial carriers, traffic accidents involving trucks or 18 wheelers are distinct from normal car collisions. The trucking industry is heavily regulated, making commercial carriers responsible for the negligence of their drivers. This means that the business or company employing the truck driver may be held liable for the negligence of the driver. Truck drivers can be negligent by operating the vehicle while intoxicated, distracted, or otherwise impaired. When their mistake causes an accident involving injury, the individual driver is liable to the victim for any resulting damage. But the victim may also have a claim against the company or commercial carrier responsible for the driver’s negligence. In addition, claims may be made against trucking companies or commercial carriers for negligent hiring or retention of its driver or for negligently entrusting one of its trucks or 18 wheelers to an incompetent driver or for failure to properly maintain and service its trucks. Truck accident cases may therefore involve recovery from multiple negligent parties.

Call Our Birmingham Truck Accident Lawyers Today

If you were injured in a truck or 18 wheeler accident, contact the experienced Birmingham truck accident lawyers at Cross & Smith today. We have extensive experience in accidents involving commercial carriers and have recovered millions of dollars for injured victims in Birmingham and across Alabama. Because truck accidents involve multiple insurance carriers and complex legal issues, it is crucial to have a seasoned attorney representing your rights. At Cross & Smith, we know that truck accidents can cause extensive damage and will work to help you obtain full compensation for your harm. Trust our battle-tested attorneys to investigate all liable parties and deal with insurance adjusters on your behalf. We are dedicated to helping you recover the compensation you deserve. Call (877) 791-0618 or contact us online.


Related Topics:

Underride Truck Accidents

Financial Responsibility Required for Trucks and Tractor – Trailers

Liability of Trucking Companies

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"This law firm is a joy to work with. They are responsive and caring. If you have a personal injury or accident case, contact Cross and Smith, LLC. I highly recommend these attorneys."
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