Virginia truck driver negligence attorneys
Holding trucking companies and drivers responsible for injuries
Taking the wheel of an 80,000 pound vehicle is a big responsibility.
That’s why the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) requires all tractor-trailer operators (aka drivers) to go through intensive training and pass a difficult "Skills Test" before they are awarded their commercial driver’s license (CDL).
The Skills Test has three parts: the Vehicle Inspection Test, the Basic Controls Test, and the Road Test. An operator must pass all three tests to earn a CDL.
Yet even with such strict guidelines for who gets behind the wheel of a tractor-trailer, big rigs are still a deadly presence on Virginia’s roads and highways.
For example, a serious accident happened recently in Giles County (near Roanoke) when a truck driver crashed due to "inattentiveness and excessive speeding."
If you have been injured or lost a loved one in an accident with a semi truck, you may be able to receive payment for medical bills, lost wages, funeral costs, and more. To find out what you should do after a tractor-trailer accident, call GibsonSingleton Virginia Injury Attorneys at (804) 413-6777 for a free consultation.
What kind of "negligence" can cause truck accidents?
The DOT regulates the trucking industry, and it works to keep our roads safe through its Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Beyond its strict licensing policies, the FMCSA limits how much a loaded tractor-trailer can weigh (80,000 pounds) and how many hours an operator can drive without taking a break.
But all of this regulation can’t make the highways safer if the truck driver and his employer act negligently. Here are ways that an operator (often at the urging of an employer) can endanger you and your family through negligence:
- Skipping the pre-trip inspection
- Overloading the trailer to transport more cargo
- Speeding or driving too fast for conditions
- Driving too many hours without a break, or driving too many days in a row
- Driving while fatigued (tired)
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Not checking blind spots
- Driving while distracted (texting, talking on a phone or CB)
- Loading the trailer improperly
- Not following the rules of the road
- Knowingly operating a vehicle that isn’t safe (bad tires, bad brakes, etc.)
- Falsifying driver logs
How do you prove negligence in a truck accident?
- To prove a tractor-trailer operator was negligent, you first have to prove that the operator owed you a "duty of care." By that, we mean the operator owed you something as simple as "driving safely while on the road."
- Then you have to prove that he or she violated that duty. For example, driving while intoxicated.
- Next, you have to prove that the violation caused you injury.
- Finally, you have to show that the injury caused you to lose money.
This sounds clear enough, but trucking companies typically fight tooth-and-nail against anyone who goes after them. Having lawyers behind you who know truckers and trucking companies’ tactics makes all the difference.
Why would I need an attorney?
As you can see, just being in an accident with a tractor-trailer - even if its driver was at fault! - won’t win you a cash settlement. That’s where we come in.
The experienced VA tractor-trailer accident lawyers at GibsonSingleton Virginia Injury Attorneys have won many such cases over the years and helped many families with their losses. Call us at (804) 413-6777 for a free case evaluation. We do not get paid unless we recover money for you. We stand ready to help you.
- Should I Be Cautious Around Big Trucks on the Road?
- Large Truck Fatality Facts
- Drowsy Driving: Asleep at the Wheel
- Skill Performance Evaluation Certificate Program - FMCSA
- Summary of Hours of Service Regulations
It costs you nothing for our firm to represent you. We only get paid when you do. Learn more
Prevention, empathy, and diligence are hallmarks of everything we do at GibsonSingleton Virginia Injury Attorneys. Our community can see these ideals lived out in our work to prevent personal injuries from happening.
- Safety Education
GibsonSingleton launches “Texts=Wrecks” campaign to reduce the number of people injured or killed by distracted drivers.
- Annual Coat Drive
During the fall, our team works to distribute coats to people in need in our community.
- Hands-on Service
John and Ken join the Gloucester Point Rotary Club in cleaning up the community.
- Supporting Local Schools
The Gibson family participates in Gloucester’s Botetourt Elementary Shuffle fundraiser.