Inattention by a commercial vehicle operator can have devastating effects. Often, the sheer size and weight of these automobiles makes collisions between trucks and passenger cars more destructive. Unfortunately, motor vehicle accidents involving trucks are a common occurrence, often resulting in devastating injuries and severe property damage.
Distracted driving truck accidents in Seattle are complicated cases that require the skills of a well-practiced legal professional. If you or a loved one were hurt by an inattentive truck driver, a consultation with a reliable attorney could be highly beneficial.
What are the Types of Truck Driver Distraction?
There are three main types of distracted driving: visual, manual, and cognitive. Visual distracted driving occurs when a truck driver takes their eyes off the road, manual distracted driving occurs when the trucker takes their hands off the wheel, and cognitive distraction occurs when the driver loses focus. All of these forms of distracted truck driving are equally dangerous and can lead to catastrophic accidents in Seattle.
The most common form of distracted driving is cell phone use. Using a cell phone causes visual distraction when the trucker has to take their eyes off the road, manual distraction when they take one hand off the wheel, and then cognitive distraction when concentrating on their phone instead of their surroundings.
Other driver distractions include:
- Eating or drinking
- Scrolling through social media
- Fiddling with the radio
- Reaching for objects
- Gazing outside
In addition, truck drivers often work for long hours without sleep. When sleep deprivation kicks in, the driver may feel drowsy, which then takes their eyes and mind off the road. Similar phenomena occur if a semi-truck driver is trying to use the GPS or is speaking to their passengers.
Common Injuries Caused by Inattentive Big Rig Operators
Due to their substantial weight and size, any tractor-trailer accidents resulting from distracted driving can lead to various forms of personal injury including whiplash, back and neck injuries, amputations, spinal injuries, internal bleeding, and even death. Commercial vehicles are likely to be involved in multi-vehicle crashes, resulting in additional injuries, fatalities and vehicular damage.
Who is Liable for Distracted Driving Collision involving Trucks in Seattle?
The process of determining liability can be complicated since few drivers are likely to admit that they were inattentive behind the wheel. Fortunately, Seattle lawyers well-versed in distracted truck driving can be helpful in gathering evidence which can prove the truck drivers’ liability for the wreck. Some of the evidence that can help build these cases includes cell phone records, witness statements, dashboard videos, surveillance tapes, and the truck’s black box. However, some of this evidence may be time-sensitive, so it is important that one engages the services of an experienced attorney promptly before the evidence is no longer available or usable.
In most cases, the truck driver and their employer will be held responsible for the accident and will be liable to pay for the resulting damages. An attorney could advise the plaintiff on how to pursue compensation for their past and future medical bills related to the accident, as well as rehabilitation, lost wages, pain and suffering, loss of future earnings, punitive damage, and other losses.
Contact a Distracted Driving Truck Accident Attorney in Seattle
If you have been in an accident involving a distracted truck driver, the best time to involve a lawyer is now. The process of determining fault and assigning liability is long and tedious, as well as time sensitive. Distracted driving truck accidents in Seattle should never happen, but if they do, it is best to work with an attorney to ensure that you receive the maximum compensation to which you are entitled.
For more information on what to do after an accident involving a trucker, contact the car accident lawyers at Odama Law and we will be happy to answer your questions.