Serving Victims of Truck Accidents Throughout New Jersey and New York
Most of us are aware that car accidents are a constant danger and that those of us who drive cars are in even greater danger if we collide with a truck, especially a tractor-trailer, rather than with another auto. A fully loaded commercial truck often weighs 25 times as much as a typical car. This tremendous disparity in weight makes it much more likely for a truck accident to cause serious, even fatal, injuries to occupants of the smaller vehicle. Even so, truckers themselves are quite vulnerable, facing higher roadway fatality rates than any other profession in the county.
Although government regulations have historically held truck manufacture, maintenance, and driving to relatively high standards, Congress has recently been rolling back a number of safety improvements, putting the public at greater risk by allowing truck drivers to work longer hours, take shorter breaks, and also allowing longer, heavier vehicles on the road. If you are injured, or a loved one is killed, in an accident with a truck, the physical, emotional, and financial trauma to your family is incalculable. This is the time you need a powerful, caring group of personal injury attorneys, such as those at Nagel Rice LLP, to see you through.
From our offices in New York and New Jersey, our dedicated attorneys have won cases for thousands of grateful clients. The settlements we obtain are known to be substantial, with many in the millions of dollars range. We have the extensive experience, in-depth legal knowledge, and strong litigation skills to bring your case to a successful conclusion and obtain the substantial compensation you are entitled to. We work on a contingency basis, meaning that you pay us no fee unless we win your case.
Remember that large trucking companies are likely to be well-insured and to have high-power legal representation. This is another reason you should make sure to have an excellent law firm on your side. The firm of Nagel Rice is fully prepared to fight for your rights and win you the full compensation you deserve — for medical and/or funeral expenses, present and future lost wages, and the pain and suffering you and your family have suffered.
Causes of Truck Accidents
Accidents, by definition, are unpredictable, There are, however, several factors that contribute to “big rig” accidents. In addition to the usual elements that may play a role in any vehicular collision — such as bad weather conditions, road obstacles, or poor road maintenance — these factors include conditions and behaviors that affect the truck drivers themselves:
- Harsh work schedules — too much rushing and too little rest, resulting in driver fatigue
- Distracted driving (e.g. texting, eating), common in truckers because of the enormous number of miles they travel without company
- Tailgating (misjudgment of stopping distance which is many times longer for truck drivers than for drivers of cars)
- Substance abuse
At times, the truck manufacturer, distributor, or company may play a significant role in truck accidents, for example if:
- The vehicle is dangerously overloaded
- The cargo is improperly secured
- Equipment on the truck is defective, improperly installed, repaired or inspected
- The company has not provided adequate training for its drivers
- The company pushes its drivers to keep to an unrealistic schedule
It is also important to realize that the contents being transported may exacerbate any collision since the truck in question may be carrying materials that are toxic, slippery, flammable, or likely to disperse, making further accidents almost inevitable.
Damages We Can Win For You
If you have been seriously injured in a truck accident in New York or New Jersey, or if someone you love has been killed in such a catastrophe, Nagel Rice is available to help you file a claim for any and all of the following compensatory damages:
- Medical Costs — doctor, hospital, surgical, pharmaceutical, and rehabilitation fees
- Lost Wages for the duration of your recovery
- Future income lost to disability or wrongful death
- Pain and suffering (physical and emotional) as a result of your injuries
- Pain suffered by a victim prior to his or her wrongful death
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of household servicesLoss of parental support, comfort and guidance to a child
- Permanent disability
- Severe scarring or disfigurement
In cases in which recklessness has been extreme or there was malicious intent, punitive damages may also be awarded. Punitive damages, which are usually quite substantial, are not awarded to compensate the victim or family, but rather to punish the defendant and to discourage any such egregious conduct on the part of other potential offenders.
Why You Need An Attorney For Your Truck Accident Claim
Having an attorney whose job is solely to focus on your interests is necessary for deciding whom your lawsuit should be filed against. There may be a number of defendants, each partially responsible for the calamity, including the driver, the trucking company (employer), the manufacturer, the shipper, the contractor, or one of the insurance companies involved. We will assess your situation to determine  whether you have a viable case and  whether you should file a single lawsuit or several. Because we are only paid if we win your case, by the time we determine that we will take your case, you can feel reasonably confident that you will be receiving a sizable award at the end of the judicial process.
How Our Attorneys Prove Your Case
Because Nagel Rice LLP is a law firm with 35 years of experience in personal injury law, our lawyers know all the tricks of the trade. We have a well-established vetting process to assess your chances of winning your case, and the resources to investigate the evidence and interview any and all witnesses to bolster it. Don’t try to navigate the legal system on your own, particularly when you are badly injured of deeply grieving. We can be reached by phone in either of our offices or by filling out a contact form on our website.