Michigan Truck Accident Investigations
Getting into any type of traffic accident is bad enough, but when your collision involves a semi-truck, your prognosis can be even worse. Many more factors are at play in truck accidents, and it’s critical to investigate them properly if you want to seek restitution. Consulting with an experienced Michigan truck accident lawyer is crucial for truck accident investigations. Trucking companies and other parties involved will do everything in their power to avoid a costly settlement or lawsuit.
At Lipton Law, we aren’t intimidated by trucking companies and complicated investigations. Our decades of experience allow us to fiercely represent our clients against trucking and insurance companies. If you were injured in a trucking accident, our Michigan personal injury lawyers are here for you. To schedule your free consultation and begin your truck accident investigation, call our Southfield office at 248-557-1688 today.
Michigan 18-Wheeler Accident Lawyers
At Lipton Law, our legal team knows how to locate and present compelling evidence that helps Michigan truck accident victims recover maximum compensation. Companies in the trucking industry have whole teams of lawyers that work to defend their truck drivers and their reputation. Having a seasoned attorney on your side is essential if you want to give your case the best possible chance of success.
From day one until your case’s resolution, we will give you the attention and the skilled advice you need to resolve your case. We know that getting through an accident is difficult, which is why we will take on all the legal matters related to your claim. While you focus on healing and recovery, we focus on conducting the incident investigation and fighting for your right to compensation.
Types of Truck Accidents
Just as there are several types of car accidents, there are also many types of truck accidents that can occur. Depending on the vehicles involved, the circumstances surrounding the incident, and the conditions of the road, any of the following trucking accident types can occur.
No matter what kind of trucking accident you were involved in, you deserve compensation for the pain and suffering you endured from your injuries. It is crucial that you contact an attorney with experience handling insurance and trucking companies.
What Causes Truck Accidents in Michigan?
A semi-truck accident can occur for a number of reasons, but some of these reasons occur more frequently than others. Additionally, many parties can be held liable after a truck accident investigation. We’ll go into that in more detail in a later section. Some of the most common causes of truck accidents include the following.
- Trucking companies hire drivers who are not qualified or who have not been properly trained.
- The trucking company fails to maintain and repair trucks properly.
- Some companies intentionally cut corners and ignore safety regulations to increase productivity and profits. This is a very dangerous practice, but it is a major problem in the trucking industry.
- Sometimes, a trucking company may pressure its truck drivers to exceed their hours of service. This is highly dangerous, as it can result in a higher number of accidents related to truck driver fatigue.
- Weather conditions also contribute to truck accidents. In Michigan, we see our fair share of snow and rain each year. Dangerous road conditions, such as sleet, snow, or rain, can dramatically increase the chances of an accident.
What Makes Michigan Truck Accidents So Complicated?
When you get hit by a truck driver, there are many potential contributing factors to the truck accident cause.
To ensure that your legal fight doesn’t become an impossible battle, we will thoroughly investigate the circumstances surrounding your incident to uncover critical information such as:
- When, where, why and how you were struck
- Road conditions
- Driver accident histories
- Eyewitness accounts and police reports
- Evidence such as accident scene photos and eyewitness accounts
- Inspection data for all vehicles involved in the accident, including your own
Truck accident inquiries are just as complex as the incidents that prompt them. As a truck accident victim, you may not have the time or knowledge to conduct an in-depth investigation. Our Michigan truck accident lawyers regularly conduct detailed examinations of traffic incidents and find expert witnesses, allowing you to focus on rehabilitating your injuries.
Why Is It So Important to Investigate Truck Accidents?
It is important to begin a truck accident investigation as soon as possible. But why is this? Why shouldn’t you wait until after your injuries have healed to begin an investigation? One of the most important reasons is that conducting an investigation as early as possible will allow you to preserve evidence that may fade with time. Examples of crucial evidence that is also time-sensitive include the following.
- Accident reports from the state. These files only stay on record for a certain period of time, so getting them sooner rather than later is essential.
- The truck’s black box data. After a certain amount of time passes, each truck’s black box will overwrite itself. Therefore, you should seek this data from the trucking company as soon as possible.
- Truck driver investigation. Work with your attorney to investigate the truck driver’s condition at the time of the accident. Were they under the influence of anything? Were they fatigued due to pressure from the trucking company?
- The truck involved in the accident. We can gather a lot of physical evidence from the truck itself. Engineers can work with your attorney to examine evidence such as inspection reports, maintenance logs, or opinions on the poor design of the vehicle. You can also look at their driving records to determine whether or not they have a history of negligent driving.
- Eyewitness accounts. Memories fade with time, even after a shocking incident such as a truck accident. Interviewing witnesses should happen as soon as possible
Steps in Truck Accident Investigations
Before we begin with our investigation, our attorneys will walk you through the entire process and ensure that you know how the investigation will proceed. Below, we provide a brief outline of the steps in a truck accident investigation.
- Gather information and evidence at the scene where the incident occurred.
- Obtain a copy of the official police report.
- Request the black box data of the truck from the trucking company.
- Interview important witnesses of the crash.
- Consult with an accident reconstruction expert to help with your investigation.
- Examine the truck involved in the accident.
- Collect your medical records and other forms that are crucial for your claim.
Who Is Liable for a Truck Accident?
Part of the purpose of taking legal action after an accident is to determine the root causes of the accident, as well as to seek compensation from the responsible parties. The following parties could be held liable after a trucking accident.
- Truck driver
- Trucking company
- Owner of the cargo or goods
- A government entity, if the truck is owned and operated by them
- Manufacturers or designers of defective parts
Working closely with an attorney helps plaintiffs get a full picture of what caused the accident, as well as fight for the compensation they deserve. While some claims result from the negligence of multiple parties, other claims involve one specific party that is to blame. In many cases, this specific party will either be the trucking company or the truck driver.
Investigating the Truck Driver
Investigating all drivers for negligence is a crucial step in the process. If a truck driver is found to have been restless, they may lose their commercial license. This could help to prevent future incidents like the one that injured you. Professional investigators often look at the following when investigating a truck driver after an accident.
- Negligent hiring processes
- Negligent truck drivers
- Drivers in other vehicles who engage in negligence
- Poor maintenance of the trucks
- Fatigue or substance abuse
Investigating the Trucking Company
Trucking companies can also contribute to truck crashes, even if they are not physically present when the crash occurs. The following forms of evidence can help you and your attorney identify whether or not the company shares some portion of the blame.
- Company records that reveal negligent hiring practices or retention of unqualified drivers. These records can also contain maintenance and repair logs.
- Black box data must be requested from the trucking company. Also known as an “event data recorder,” a black box is of great use to injury lawyers.
- If possible, we investigate the scene of the accident. Tire tracks, weather conditions, and statements from witnesses can all be gathered at the scene. Witnesses and police statements should be taken as soon as possible. This helps to preserve the integrity of their statements.
- Lastly, our attorneys will examine the truck itself for any signs of malfunction or failed equipment.
Compensation After a Serious Truck Accident
Due to a truck’s size, an accident has the potential to cause life-threatening injuries, and even wrongful death. In the event of a truck accident, our attorneys will fight for just compensation in the following forms, if applicable.
- Medical expenses
- Other related healthcare expenses
- Medication costs
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Mental and emotional distress or anguish
- Scarring or disfigurement
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of quality of life
Why Should I Work with an Experienced Truck Accident Attorney?
You may wonder why you need to work with an attorney in the first place, especially if you’ve handled a car accident case on your own in the past. The truth is that commercial vehicle accidents are often far more complicated than the average car accident claim. Experienced truck accident lawyers will have the knowledge and real-world training to give you a better chance at a positive outcome. Don’t risk your financial stability and precious recovery time simply to handle everything on your own.
Contact a skilled truck crash lawyer at Lipton Law, and we’ll handle all the heavy lifting for you. From start to finish, we will not only act as your staunch advocates, but we will also ensure that you receive the care you deserve.
Experienced Michigan Truck Accident Lawyers
Truck accident investigations do more than just establish that a trucker was at fault for your property damage or injury. In comparative fault states like Michigan, these investigations are crucial to proving that you shouldn’t also be held liable.
Contact our Southfield firm online now or call 248-557-1688 for a free truck accident consultation. Let us help by starting an investigation that gets you back on the road.