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What Injuries Qualify for Truck Accident Compensation?

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What Injuries Qualify for Truck Accident Compensation?

Because of commercial trucks’ size and weight, truck accidents often result in severe injuries. These can be life-altering, leading to lengthy medical care and, after a fatal crash, wrongful death damages. The aftermath of a truck accident is challenging, and understanding what injuries qualify for truck accident compensation is the start of evaluating damages for a truck accident injury claim.

The legal framework surrounding truck accident injury compensation involves federal and state regulations. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) sets stringent guidelines for truck operations, including maintenance schedules, driver hours, and safety protocols. Violations of the trucking regulations can be critical in establishing liability in truck accident cases.

Establishing Liability in Truck Accidents

Unlike most car accident cases, determining liability in a truck accident is often complex. It involves multiple parties, including the truck driver, the trucking company, and third-party maintenance providers. Each party’s role must be scrutinized to identify negligence or breach of duty. Evidence such as driver logs, maintenance records, and black box data is pivotal.

Liability is the first step in evaluating a truck accident injury case.

Read More: Can I Sue For Being Hit By a Semi Truck

Common Truck Accident Injuries

Injuries from a truck accident are often more severe simply because of the big rig’s size and weight. Even a lower-speed crash can result in catastrophic or fatal consequences. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, Texas had 38,909 commercial vehicle crashes in 2023. In those crashes, 620 people died last year.

According to the National Safety Council (NSC), Texas has more fatal large truck and bus accidents than any other state in the country.

What injuries qualify for truck accident compensation? Below are some of the most common types of injuries seen in personal injury claims from truck accidents:

Whiplash and Neck Injuries

Whiplash is a common injury in truck accidents, particularly rear-end collisions. Whiplash is caused by the back-and-forth movement of the neck, leading to:

– Neck pain and stiffness

– Reduced range of motion

– Headaches

– Dizziness

Back and Spinal Cord Injuries

Injuries to the neck, back, and spinal cord can be minor sprains to severe spinal cord damage. Common injuries include:

– Herniated discs

– Fractured vertebrae

– Spinal cord compression

– Paralysis (partial or complete)

Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI)

Traumatic brain injuries result from a blow or jolt to the head, which disrupts normal brain function. Symptoms can be mild, moderate, or severe and include:

– Concussions

– Contusions

– Skull fractures

– Cognitive and behavioral changes

Fractures and Broken Bones

Broken bones are prevalent in various accidents, including car crashes, falls, and sports injuries. Commonly fractured bones include:

– Arms and wrists

– Legs and ankles

– Ribs

– Collarbone

Soft Tissue Injuries

Soft tissue injuries are damage to muscles, ligaments, and tendons. Some people refer to soft tissue injury as whiplash. They are common in many semi-truck and rear-end crashes and include:

– Sprains and strains

– Bruises (contusions)

– Tendonitis

– Bursitis

Burn Injuries

Burn injuries can result from car accidents. Their severity categorizes them:

– First-degree burns (superficial)

– Second-degree burns (partial thickness)

– Third-degree burns (full thickness)

Lacerations and Abrasions

Lacerations are cuts or tears in the skin, while abrasions are superficial wounds caused by scraping. Both can occur in accidents involving sharp objects or rough surfaces and may lead to:

– Bleeding

– Infections

– Scarring

Internal Injuries

Internal injuries are often more severe and harder to detect than external injuries. Common internal injuries include:

– Internal bleeding

– Organ damage (e.g., liver, spleen)

– Pneumothorax (collapsed lung)

– Abdominal injuries

Psychological Injuries

Psychological injuries are less visible but can be just as debilitating as physical injuries. They include:

– Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

– Anxiety

– Depression

– Emotional distress

Amputations

Amputations are the loss of a limb, which can occur in severe accidents involving commercial vehicle collisions. They result in:

– Loss of function

– Phantom limb pain

– Need for prosthetics and rehabilitation

Eye Injuries

Eye injuries can occur due to blunt trauma, chemical exposure, or foreign objects. Common eye injuries include:

– Corneal abrasions

– Retinal detachment

– Chemical burns

– Vision loss

What Kinds of Damages Qualify for Truck Accident Compensation?

Victims of truck accidents can seek personal injury compensation, categorized broadly into economic and non-economic damages.

Economic Damages

Medical Expenses

Covers current and future medical expenses, like hospital stays, surgeries, rehabilitation, and medication.

Lost Wages or Reduced Earning Capacity

Compensation for lost income due to the inability to work during recovery and future earning capacity if the injury results in permanent disability.

Non-Economic Damages

Pain and Suffering

It is compensation for physical pain caused by the accident and subsequent injuries.

Loss of Consortium

Which is compensation for the impact on the victim’s relationship with their spouse or family.

Mental Anguish

Mental anguish is the mental trauma associated with significant injuries.

Read More: Why are Settlements Larger for Truck Crashes?

Steps to Take After a Truck Accident

Seek Immediate Medical Attention

Prioritize health by getting a thorough medical examination, even if injuries seem minor.

Document the Accident Scene

Collect evidence such as photographs, witness statements, and contact information.

Report the Accident

Notify the police and obtain an official accident report.

Consult a Truck Accident Lawyer

Hire an experienced attorney to navigate the complexities of truck accident claims.

Read More: How Long Does It Take to Settle An 18-Wheeler Accident Case?

Insurance in Truck Accident Compensation

Trucking companies must carry substantial insurance policies due to the potential severity of accidents. These policies often have higher limits than standard auto insurance, providing a broader scope for compensation. However, insurance companies may attempt to lowball settlements, making legal representation essential to ensure fair compensation.

Negotiating Settlements vs. Going to Trial

Many truck accident claims are settled out of court through negotiations. Settlements offer a quicker resolution and avoid the uncertainties of a trial. However, pursuing a trial may be necessary if a fair settlement cannot be reached. A skilled trucking accident attorney will prepare to present a compelling truck accident lawsuit to secure maximum compensation.

The Impact of Comparative Negligence

In Texas, comparative negligence laws apply. Compensation will be reduced by the victim’s percentage of fault in the accident. Understanding comparative fault and effectively countering contributory negligence claims is critical in maximizing compensation in a truck accident case.

Statute of Limitations for Truck Accident Claims

Texas has a two-year statute of limitations and a deadline for filing a truck accident claim. Missing this deadline can be fatal to the right to seek compensation. Therefore, timely action is essential to preserve legal rights and build a strong truck accident case.

How Can Our Truck Accident Attorney in Houston Help You?

A Houston trucking accident law firm can be very helpful when you need compensation after a truck accident. Here’s how they can assist:

Experienced Representation

We provide expertise on Texas truck accident laws, ensuring you understand your rights and options.

Case Evaluation

Our experienced truck accident claim lawyer will evaluate your case, focusing on making a strong claim and maximizing your payout.

Gathering Evidence

We will obtain vital evidence, such as incident or crash reports, interview witnesses, meet with your doctors, and review your medical records.

Dealing with the Adjusters

For more than 35 years, our truck accident team has litigated and settled hundreds of truck accident cases for personal injury victims across Texas. We have extensive experience in the negotiation and evaluation of truck accident claims. By hiring our skilled law firm, you will protect yourself from being taken advantage of by the insurance company.

Proving Liability

We work to prove the other party’s fault, crucial for a successful truck accident injury claim.

Evaluating Your Damages

Our skilled legal team will review your damages to make a demand for full and fair compensation. We will examine medical expenses, missed work time, and human damages such as pain and suffering.

Legal Representation

If we cannot settle your claim for fair compensation, we will take your case to court and let a Harris County jury decide what is fair. We will do the necessary work to be fully prepared for your trial.

Focus on Recovery

When you hire a Baumgartner Law Firm, you can let us worry about your case while you focus on your recovery. We will keep you posted on your case and focus on maximizing your compensation.

Contact a Houston Truck Accident Lawyer Today!

Contact Baumgartner Law Firm today to schedule a FREE CONSULTATION. Our skilled trucking accident law firm has helped victims of commercial vehicle crashes since 1985. We can help you, too!

Call us now for a FREE CONSULTATION!

Baumgartner Law Firm

6711 Cypress Creek Pkwy, Houston, TX, 77069

(281) 587-1111

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