Austin Lawyers for Truck Accidents Caused By Defective Parts
If you sustained injuries in an accident with a truck that was caused by a defective part on the truck, you might be entitled to financial compensation. The truck accident lawyers of Gibson Hill Personal Injury have the experience, resources, and knowledge to represent accident victims and help pursue legal action against the at-fault driver, trucking company, or another negligent party.
Commercial trucks have many systems and parts that must function correctly so the driver can arrive at their destination safely. If any parts are defective, it could prevent the driver from being able to maneuver the truck properly or brake in time to avoid an accident. Routine inspections and maintenance should occur to ensure all parts are working properly. If drivers fail to perform maintenance or don’t fix defects, they could be held liable for the injuries they cause.
To find out more about the legal services we provide, call Gibson Hill Personal Injury for a free consultation at (737) 249-6300.
Common Commercial Trucks In Austin
Different types of trucks transport consumer goods and other items in Austin and around Texas every day. Commercial trucks tend to be large, heavy, and have a trailer that can hold a variety of cargo. Every part must be in excellent working condition so the truck driver can operate the vehicle safely.
Common types of commercial trucks include:
- Delivery trucks and vans
- Tanker trucks
- Cement mixers
- Heavy haulers
- Box trucks
- Garbage and dump trucks
- Flatbed trucks
- Refrigerated trucks
- Tow trucks
You could end up in an accident with any type of truck. If the driver or their employer doesn’t maintain the vehicle parts and they malfunction, the driver could lose control and crash into another person’s car. Severe injuries and fatalities often occur when a large truck and passenger vehicle collide during an accident. The occupants of the smaller vehicle suffer the most and might require extensive medical treatment to recover.
Common Defective Parts In Commercial Trucks
Truck drivers rely on their vehicles to get them to their destination on time and in one piece. Different parts are necessary to facilitate proper braking, steering, and other moves the driver makes. The trucking company and its employees must regularly inspect every truck in the fleet to check for damage, defects, and other issues. If they find a problem, they should promptly fix it.
Some of the most common parts that could become defective are:
- Brake system
- Cargo securement devices
- Steering system
Gibson Hill Personal Injury knows the state laws associated with product liability cases. We can review the facts of the case, gather evidence, and, if possible, find a way to prove that a defective part led to the accident and your resulting injuries. We believe in holding people accountable for their actions so our clients can recover the maximum compensation they need to heal their injuries.
Who’s Liable for A Defective Truck Part?
Proving fault in a product liability case can be challenging. You must prove that a defective part contributed to the crash and who was responsible for ensuring that part was safe for use. Liability is crucial in cases like this. Figuring out who should be held liable is necessary to determine the source of your financial award.
Potentially liable parties could be:
Truck driver – Truck drivers must look over their vehicles and cargo before they leave each stop. They should check the truck’s cargo load and stability and locate defects or damage that could pose a danger. They may be subject to spot inspections by police while traveling, as well. They should promptly make repairs or notify their employer of any problems they encounter. Failing to perform these inspections could mean they are to blame for any accidents that happen.
Trucking company – Most people make the mistake of thinking the driver must be at fault since they were operating the truck. While in some situations, that might be true, there are other incidents where the trucking company could be to blame. They should review driver logs to ensure everyone is complying with regulations for inspections. They must also perform maintenance on all the trucks to check that every part is working correctly. Failing to follow these federal regulations could lead to an accident.
Manufacturer – The manufacturer responsible for designing and constructing the parts could be at fault for an accident if they caused a defect. There are specific standards they must meet before placing their products in the hands of their consumers.
Three types of defects exist that can lead to an accident. They are:
- Manufacturing defects – An error made while manufacturing the part, resulting in a dangerous product.
- Design defects – The final design used for a part contains a defect, making it inherently unsafe for the user.
- Failure to warn – Also called a marketing defect, this failure occurs when the manufacturer doesn’t provide instructions on using the part correctly or warning labels for the risks the user could face.
Third-party – Trucking companies will sometimes hire another company to maintain and repair truck parts. If the third-party didn’t do an adequate job of recognizing and fixing defects, they could be liable for the accident victim’s injuries.
Pursuing Compensation In An Insurance Claim
It’s a federal law for all trucking companies to purchase liability insurance for their truck drivers just in case an accident occurs that results in injuries to other vehicle occupants. Different coverage limits are necessary depending on the truck’s weight and the type of cargo loaded in the trailer.
These limits are:
- Trucks weighing less than 10,001 pounds and transporting non-hazardous materials – $300,000
- Trucks weighing over 10,000 pounds and carrying non-hazardous cargo – $750,000
- Oil and other hazardous substances – $1 million to $5 million.
The losses you suffered were probably significant. Many people aren’t lucky enough to walk away from an accident with a commercial truck with minor injuries. When you file an insurance claim, you can pursue compensation that covers your past and future losses, such as:
- Medical expenses
- Loss of household services
- Mental anguish
- Property damage
- Physical impairment or disfigurement
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
If the truck driver or another negligent party didn’t maintain the truck parts and one of them became defective, the insurance company should provide an adequate settlement. Insurance companies are difficult to deal with, so hiring Gibson Hill Personal Injury to handle this part of your case is critical. We are aggressive in our negotiation tactics and will fight for the maximum compensation you need and deserve.
Filing A Lawsuit for Compensation of Your Losses
You can compensate for your total losses by filing a lawsuit against the truck driver, their employer, or another liable party for the accident. You must follow a strict deadline if you want to sue the at-fault party. The statute of limitations in Texas is two years. That means you have a two-year timeframe from the accident date to file your lawsuit. If the deadline passes, you won’t have the opportunity to seek compensation in court in this matter.
Two main exceptions could delay the statute of limitations if either of the conditions below existed at the time of the accident:
- You were of unsound mind. The statutory period would only begin to run if you gain mental competency.
- You were under 18 years old. The two-year period would begin to run once you turn 18.
You shouldn’t handle your case alone. Lawsuits are complicated to pursue without assistance from an experienced and qualified lawyer. You would likely end up with much lower compensation than you would receive if you hired Gibson Hill Personal Injury. We can take on your case’s legal responsibilities while you focus on attending your doctor’s appointments and recovering.
We can investigate the accident, gather evidence, and fight for your rights in court. We’re not afraid to go up against trucking companies or their insurance companies. Our team takes cases like this very seriously and knows the importance of winning, so the cost of your treatment and associated expenses comes out of the pocket of the ones responsible for your injuries.
Gibson Hill Personal Injury has been representing clients in Austin and the surrounding areas since 2013. So far, we’ve achieved positive results for countless accident victims in Texas. We care about the people who hire us and provide compassionate and dependable legal services. We know that no amount of money can change the past, but we hope the compensation we win can ease your financial burden and help you heal.
We know many of our clients are struggling with the cost of medical treatment, prescriptions, and other expenses while pursuing a case. Gibson Hill Personal Injury doesn’t want to add more stress to your life by charging upfront fees or costs. We work on contingency, so you won’t have to pay us unless we secure an insurance settlement or favorable jury verdict. If we lose your case, you won’t owe us any money.
If you were injured in an accident involving a truck with defective parts, call Gibson Hill Personal Injury immediately. We can meet with you for a free consultation to discuss the details of the accident and determine the legal options that could reach your legal goals. We want to be your advocate during this traumatic time in your life and protect your rights and interests. Call (737) 249-6300 right now and let us get started on your case.