Dedicated Lawyers Helping Accident Victims in Alabama and Florida
Substantial federal and state regulations are in place to protect drivers from being hurt in truck collisions. The weight and size of a commercial vehicle can cause catastrophic injuries or even death when it collides with a car, motorcycle, or pedestrian. In spite of significant regulation efforts, truck drivers may be fatigued or distracted or overload their trucks, resulting in a serious crash. Since the trucking industry is regulated at the federal level, and a higher amount of insurance is required, truck accident lawsuits require the guidance of capable attorneys with a track record in litigating these types of cases. Milam & Milam has significant experience helping Florida and Alabama victims seek compensation after truck crashes.
Negligence Per Se in Truck Accidents
The heavy regulation of truck drivers means that in many states, the doctrine of "negligence per se" often applies to a lawsuit arising from a collision. In Alabama, for example, this rule requires a victim to prove the following elements:
- The defendant violated a safety statute;
- The statute the defendant violated was designed to protect a group of people to which the victim belongs;
- The victim’s injury was the type of harm the statute was intended to prevent;
- The defendant's statutory violation was the proximate cause of the accident; and
- The victim incurred actual damages as a result of his or her injuries.
Negligent Hire and Negligent Supervision in Alabama
As a truck accident victim, you may be able to sue not only the individual truck driver who was at fault, but also his or her employer, which may be a corporation or business. A trucking company may be held liable under theories of vicarious liability, negligent hire, or negligent supervision. Some employers hire a driver who is not qualified because they have trouble finding someone who meets the state and federal standards associated with hiring truck drivers. This may make a big difference because trucking companies often carry significant insurance. Since big rig accidents often lead to catastrophic injury or death, it is important to have multiple sources of recovery to ensure that all of your injuries are adequately compensated.
Federal law requires companies to properly screen candidates and keep a file about their qualifications as well as any problems that arise during their employment under section 391.21 of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations. The driver qualification file must include information about the driver's experience, crash history, and traffic tickets from the previous three years, information about prior licenses, explanation of past license suspensions, and a list of previous employers. Trucking companies are required to find out why a driver left his or her prior employment. An employer that fails to properly investigate an employee’s background or decides to ignore a truck driver's conduct during employment may be held accountable for negligent hire or negligent supervision.
Discuss Your Truck Crash Case with an Experienced Gulf Coast Attorney
At Milam & Milam, our injury lawyers know how to help people who were hurt in Gulf Coast truck crashes recover compensation for their injuries. We are located in Fairhope, a city in Baldwin County, Alabama on the eastern shore of Mobile Bay. We use our 25 years of combined experience to serve clients in Birmingham, Montgomery, Pensacola, and other nearby communities with cutting-edge technology, clear communication, and ethical strategies. Contact us by calling 251-928-0191, or schedule a consultation with a member of our team through our contact form.