Trucks are a force to be reckoned with on the road. These behemoth vehicles can perform many tasks but also cause a lot of damage. If you or a loved one has been injured or died as a result of an 18-wheeler accident, figuring out the next steps is overwhelming. Whether you are dealing with arrangements or medical bills that are piling up, getting the compensation you deserve can seem like another mountain to climb.
Terry Law Firm, P.S. can help you through this tough time. With attorney Scott Terry, you won’t face your case alone. He will help you through with compassionate service and legal representation along the way. The firm proudly serves clients located in Sumner, Washington as well as the neighboring areas of Puyallup, Kent, Bonney Lake, Auburn, Lake Tapps, Orting, and King, Pierce, and Thurston counties.
Washington Laws Regarding Truck Accidents
Laws pertaining to truck accidents differ slightly from those that govern normal car accidents, both on the state and federal levels.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations
The FMCSRs apply to all employers, employees, and commercial motor vehicles that transport property or passengers in interstate commerce. Interstate commerce refers to trade, traffic, or transportation that crosses state or national lines or that begins or ends across state or national lines. These regulations set forth minimum standards for those involved with the operation of commercial motor vehicles in interstate commerce. The result of this is that those operating the vehicle — all people and entities involved in the interstate operation of trucks — are covered.
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Washington State Laws
The state of Washington has laws governing any traffic accident. When a truck is involved, the damage tends to be more serious. Washington law governs the safety of the trucks, whether it is inspection, weight, or what they are carrying. The truck accident needs to be reported to the Washing Department of Transportation (DOT) if it resulted in $1,000 or more of property damage or a person was killed or injured.
Washington DOT statistics, last published in 2015, show that there were 6,091 overall collisions involving heavy trucks in the state, resulting in 38 fatalities and over 1,300 other injuries.
The statute of limitations in Washington dictates how much time you have after the injury to pursue a lawsuit. If there was an injury to a person, you have three years from the injury. The same rule applies if there was property damage. If there was a fatality, the statute of limitations for filing a wrongful death claim is three years from the date of the individual’s death.
Liability for a semi-truck accident can fall on multiple parties, depending on the situation surrounding the accident. The liable parties can include:
- The truck driver
- The trucking company
- The truck manufacturer (or parts manufacturer)
- The person who loaded the cargo
- Maintenance personnel
There are various factors that are considered in determining liability. Controllable factors such as the training that the truck driver received or the driver’s fatigue are considered, as well as outside factors such as the road conditions and the weather.
Filing a Personal Injury Claim
Filing a personal injury claim may seem like a daunting task, but is less intimidating when you have a skilled and knowledgeable attorney behind you. Don’t make the mistake of trying to pursue compensation on your own. Let an experienced professional lead the way.
Truck Accidents Attorney Serving Sumner, Washington
If you have been involved in a truck accident, you have the right to pursue fair compensation. Terry Law Firm, P.S. is ready to help you. Attorney Scott Terry serves clients located in Sumner, Washington as well as the neighboring areas of Puyallup, Kent, Bonney Lake, Auburn, Lake Tapps, Orting, and King, Pierce, and Thurston counties.