Truck Rollover Accidents

Rollover accidents are preventable. Truck drivers have a duty to remain alert and adhere to safe driving practices. The Lanier Law Firm is dedicated to helping truck rollover accident victims recover the maximum compensation available.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported 35,766 fatal crashes in 2020 and 1,593,390 injury crashes. Of these, 4,965 fatal crashes and 146,930 injury crashes involved large trucks. Rollover accidents are dangerous for occupants of the large truck as well as surrounding motorists.

Causes of Rollover Truck Accidents

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reports that more than 1,300 cargo tank rollovers occur every year, an average of nearly four rollovers every day. According to the report, as many as 78 percent of rollovers involved driver error.

Cargo Tank Rollovers

The FMCSA report showed that inattentiveness and drowsiness contribute to approximately 20 percent of rollover accidents. In more than 90 percent of rollover accidents reported, another adverse event preceded the rollover, such as the following:

  • Running off the road
  • Drifting over into a soft shoulder
  • Riding up over a curb
  • Incorrectly making a turn at an intersection
Other factors that contribute to a lesser degree include:
  • Speeding
  • Evasive maneuvers

Surprisingly, most rollovers occur during the day on straight, dry roads and involve drivers with more than 10 years of experience.

Mechanical defects also play a role. According to one report, 54 percent of tanker trucks involved in rollover accidents had brake defects.

The load size also plays a role. Tanker trucks carry liquids, and loads that are less than full can result in a sloshing effect that redistributes the weight in the trailer during certain maneuvers, leading to tipping.

Combination Truck Rollovers

According to TruckingTruth, the following factors can lead to rollovers involving combination trucks, such as tractor-trailers:
  • Improper load distribution
  • Turns that are too fast
  • Quick lane changes
  • Sudden steering movements
High crosswinds are another risk factor for rollover accidents. A study published by Science Direct found that empty trailers increase the risk of rollover accidents. The study also found that steep roads, sharp turns and driving at higher speeds increased the risk of rollovers, including for fully-loaded trucks.

Who may be liable in a truck rollover accident case?

Liability in truck rollover accidents can rest on the following:

  • The truck driver
  • The trucking company
  • A manufacturer
  • A mechanic
  • An individual responsible for loading
  • A government entity responsible for road conditions

In New York and California, trucking companies are liable for the actions of negligent drivers. In Texas, the trucking company can only be found liable in a separate civil action after the negligence of the driver has been established.

What if I am partly at fault for the accident?

Sharing fault in an accident does not necessarily bar you from recovering compensation. In Texas, you are barred from recovering compensation if your share of the fault exceeds 50 percent. In New York and California, you can recover compensation no matter how high your share of the fault, even if it is 99 percent. However, in all cases, your compensation is diminished accordingly.

New York is a no-fault state, which means you must first file an accident claim with your own Personal Injury Protection. If your injuries meet New York’s statutory threshold for serious injury, you are then entitled to recover compensation through the negligent party’s insurance. Sharing fault in the accident only impacts the compensation you collect from the other party. It will not diminish the compensation you receive from your no-fault insurance.

How much is my truck rollover accident case worth?

Compensation for truck accident injuries may be substantial if you have suffered severe injuries. Compensation may include the following:

Medical expenses

Rehabilitative expenses

Therapy

The cost of domestic services

Personal care expenses

Pain and suffering

Disfigurement

Mental anguish

Emotional distress

Loss of society

Loss of consortium

Loss of capacity to enjoy life

Punitive damages if the court determines the defendant’s conduct was deliberate, malicious, fraudulent, reckless or grossly negligent

There is no limit to the compensation you can receive in New York or California, but Texas does limit punitive damages to the greater of:

  • Your total non-economic damages (such as pain and suffering), up to $750,000
  • $200,000

When should I contact a truck rollover accident attorney?

If you have been seriously injured in a truck rollover accident, you will need an attorney as soon as possible so that your case can be thoroughly investigated and prepared well ahead of the statute of limitations, which, in most cases, is two years in California and Texas and three years in New York.

What if my family member was killed in a rollover accident?

In the tragic death of a loved one in a rollover truck accident, the family is entitled to receive compensation when the accident was the result of negligence. The following types of compensation may be available:

How much does a personal injury attorney cost?

The Lanier Law Firm operates on a contingency fee basis, which means there are no upfront fees for services. Our law firm gets paid only after we secure compensation for you.

Do I need a truck rollover accident attorney to help me with my case?

It is important to retain an experienced personal injury attorney to handle your rollover truck accident case to ensure your legal rights are protected and you receive the fair and reasonable compensation to which you are entitled.

The trucking company’s insurance adjuster may contact you to offer you a lowball settlement, then pressure you to accept it without consulting an attorney. The adjuster may also attempt to persuade you that he or she is working for your best interests, but this is untrue. An insurance adjuster’s job is to minimize the compensation the insurance company pays because adjusters are hired to represent the insurance company’s best interests.

You need an experienced and dedicated truck accident attorney who represents your best interests. The attorneys at The Lanier Law Firm are skilled negotiators who can persuade the insurance company to offer a generous settlement that is fair and reasonable. When this is not possible, our attorneys have a long and successful track record of winning these cases in court.

Why is The Lanier Law Firm the best choice?

The Lanier Law Firm was founded in 1990 by Mark Lanier, an internationally recognized and renowned personal injury attorney who has received numerous prestigious recognitions from his peers for his accomplishments on behalf of his clients, including Trial Lawyer of the Year by National Trial Lawyers.

During the three decades since he established The Lanier Law Firm, Mark Lanier has grown the firm to a U.S. News & World Report Tier 1 Best Law Firm, with a powerful arsenal of 60 of the most skilled and widely recognized lawyers in the field of personal injury law.

The firm’s designation as a Best Law Firm is a direct reflection of the high level of service the attorneys at The Lanier Law Firm offer clients. Below is a sample of the feedback we have received from our satisfied clients:

“I truly want to thank you for your tenacity in winning battles for your clients of mesothelioma. Our family is very grateful to know your tireless efforts not only helping us but so many others that share the same story.”

– Kathleen R.

“Just want to thank you for the work that The Lanier Law Firm does on behalf of those who could not defend themselves for many reasons. I will be eternally grateful.”

– Deb H.

“Every individual in your firm with whom I contact was so very kind and respectful to me. I want to thank all who handled my case so brilliantly.”

– Patricia J.

If you have been injured in a truck rollover crash, don’t let the statute of limitations run out. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.

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