Houston Rollover Truck Accident Lawyers
Rollover truck accidents are extremely frightening, dangerous, and deadly. If you were injured in a rollover truck accident or if you lost a loved one in this type of accident, don’t hesitate to contact a Houston truck accident attorney at Gibson Hill Personal Injury. Our highly experienced legal team will provide exceptional, aggressive representation in your case and help you hold the truck driver accountable for their recklessness.
Victims of rollover truck accidents often sustain severe, debilitating injuries. They may face a lengthy recovery and may not be able to return to work for weeks, months, or the foreseeable future. The financial stress that results from these circumstances can feel crushing, and you may not see a path forward.
The Houston personal injury attorneys at Gibson Hill Personal Injury can help get your life back on track and make you whole again. We strongly believe that you should not be saddled with financial strain when you’re injured as a result of someone else’s negligence. We’ll develop a legal strategy to support your goals and to help you win the full compensation you need.
Call Gibson Hill Personal Injury at (713) 659-4000 for a free consultation or to find out more about how we can help you in your case. We’ll take the time to understand your needs, answer all your questions, and review your legal options. We’re ready to help.
Why Do Rollover Accidents Happen?
There are a few factors that make large trucks prone to rolling over. One reason is their high center of gravity, which can easily become disrupted when a truck turns or swerves. When the truck turns, but it’s heavy cargo load continues along its original path, the truck can become off-balance and roll.
Another factor that could cause a truck to roll is a phenomenon called tripping. Tripping occurs when a vehicle makes contact with an external object, and the force lifts the tires off the ground, causing the vehicle to roll. Trucks are top-heavy, so when the impact is strong enough, they can easily tip onto their side.
Contact with various objects, such as those listed below, could cause a commercial truck to trip:
- Concrete barrier
- Road hazard
While physics and tripping might explain how large trucks end up in rollover accidents, they don’t explain why. Many causes could contribute to a rollover crash, especially driver error. Truck drivers have the responsibility of maneuvering a large vehicle with a heavy trailer containing cargo. One wrong move could lead to a devastating accident.
The most common causes of rollover truck accidents are:
- Taking a turn too fast
- Distracted driving
- Running a red light or stop sign
- Failing to yield the right of way
- Drunk or drugged driving
- Failing to check blind spots before changing lanes or merging
The size difference between a commercial truck and a small car is significant. If you’re driving near a large truck, you should try to keep your distance as much as possible. An accident can lead to life-threatening injuries that require expensive medical care to recover. Rollover crashes are especially hazardous if the cargo on the back of the truck falls out and causes a pileup or subsequent injuries.
Holding the Truck Driver Liable After a Rollover Accident
Texas is a fault state when it comes to motor vehicle accidents. That means whoever caused the accident becomes financially responsible for everyone who suffered injuries. They must provide compensation to cover medical treatment, lost wages, and other losses. Typically, this is done through an insurance claim with their liability insurance.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires all truck drivers to carry insurance coverage with minimum liability limits. The minimum liability coverage depends on the commercial truck’s weight and the type of cargo being transported.
- $300,000 – Non-hazardous cargo on trucks under 10,001 pounds.
- $750,000 – Non-hazardous cargo on trucks over 10,000 pounds.
- $1 million – Transport of oil for interstate or foreign commerce.
- $5 million – Transport of other hazardous materials.
These limits could compensate an accident victim for their losses when the truck driver is at fault. Compensation may be economic or non-economic.
Economic damages refer to actual expenses, such as:
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- Property damage
- Out of pocket expenses
- Medical bills
Non-economic damages refer to intangible losses, such as:
- Mental anguish
- Loss of consortium
- Physical impairment or disfigurement
- Pain and suffering
You could seek compensation for your total losses in an insurance claim or lawsuit against the truck driver. You must be able to prove that they were at fault and you didn’t contribute to the crash in any way. If you share any amount of blame, you could receive less than you would if the driver was 100% at fault.
Texas follows a modified comparative negligence rule, also known as proportionate responsibility. That means your compensation could be reduced by the percentage of fault you share. To clarify, let’s say you were seeking $50,000 in compensation for your injuries and losses in a truck accident. Under normal circumstances, you could pursue up to $50,000 in financial compensation. However, if it’s found that you were 20% responsible for your own injuries, you could only seek $40,000 in compensation.
When Should I File a Lawsuit?
Almost all truck accident cases will settle before they ever see the inside of a courtroom. However, if the insurance company we negotiate with refuses to offer a settlement that’s just, our best option for full compensation may be to file a lawsuit against the at-fault party.
When you file a lawsuit in a civil court, you must adhere to a statute of limitations, which is a timeframe for suing someone for compensation. The statute of limitations for a truck accident injury case is two years in Texas. The clock begins ticking on the accident date and ends two years later. If you do not file suit by the deadline, you could lose your right to compensation.
You might also be able to seek punitive damages in a lawsuit. It does not compensate you for your losses the way economic and non-economic compensation does. It aims to punish the at-fault party for their wrongdoing. A jury will consider awarding punitive damages if you can provide clear and convincing evidence that the truck driver acted with fraud, gross negligence, or malice.
Filing a Wrongful Death Claim in Texas
When a passenger vehicle and large truck collide, it is usually the smaller car occupants that suffer more severe injuries. Fatalities occur at a higher rate as well. If you lost a loved one in a rollover truck accident, you could file a lawsuit against the truck driver if they were at fault.
Texas statute § 71.001 defines “wrongful death” as the death of a person caused by another party’s neglect, default, wrongful act, unskillfulness, or carelessness.
Only a surviving spouse, children, or parents of the deceased are allowed to file a lawsuit. They can file as an individual or a group. If they don’t file within three months from the date of death, an executor or personal representative of the estate can pursue a claim.
There is a two-year statute of limitations for wrongful death lawsuits. That means the person pursuing legal action must do so within two years from the date their loved one died.
The damages available for the estate and surviving family members are:
- Loss of companionship, love, society, and comfort
- Lost earning capacity
- Emotional and mental anguish, pain, and suffering
- Loss of services, maintenance, support, care, advice, and counsel provided by the deceased if they survived
- Lost inheritance, including anything the deceased would have earned if they lived an average lifetime
Lawsuits are complicated to navigate, especially when it involves wrongful death. Gibson Hill Personal Injury will handle each step to ensure nothing falls through the cracks, and you and your family receive the compensation you deserve for your devastating loss.
Contact Gibson Hill Personal Injury
Our Houston truck accident lawyers will remain by your side in the fight for justice. You can depend on us to advocate for your rights to pursue compensation and hold the truck driver or trucking company liable for causing your rollover accident injuries. You were forced to face expensive medical bills, painful treatment, and lost wages from your inability to return to work. You should not have to suffer any further as a result of someone else’s actions.
When you hire us, our legal team will thoroughly investigate the rollover crash to determine who was at fault and find evidence that proves you deserve compensation. We won’t allow the insurance company to take advantage of you or attempt to settle for an amount that won’t compensate you for your losses. Our goal is to recover the money you’re owed so you can heal and move forward with your life.
At Gibson Hill Personal Injury, our Houston personal injury lawyers will provide compassionate, dependable, and aggressive legal representation. Accident victims often feel overwhelmed by the responsibility of an insurance claim or lawsuit. You won’t have to worry about the legal aspects of your case. We will handle everything and openly communicate with you about the available options and progress of your case.
If you or someone you love was injured or killed in a rollover truck accident in Houston, call us at (713) 659-4000 today for a free consultation. A compassionate attorney will explain your legal options and answer all of your questions.