Truck drivers are required to complete special training and follow specific federal and state regulations while operating a tractor-trailer. One of the reasons for these requirements is the size of the vehicle they’re driving can make accidents much more dangerous for everyone involved. In 2018, 11 percent of all motor vehicle accidents resulting in death involved large trucks. Overwhelmingly, 96 percent of those deaths were occupants of passenger vehicles.
Our team of truck accident lawyers at Cavanaugh & Thickens, LLC has years of experience representing people across South Carolina who have been injured or have lost loved ones as a result of truck accidents involving tractor-trailers and 18-wheelers. We’ve seen first-hand how serious and scary these crashes can be, and we are here to help you through it.
There are many reasons why you should hire an experienced truck accident lawyer if you or someone you know is involved in a truck accident in South Carolina.
South Carolina Truck Accident Facts:
According to reports from the South Carolina Department of Public Safety, the number of truck tractor units involved in traffic collisions has increased every year since 2013.
- 2013 – 3,576
- 2014 – 4,028
- 2015 – 4,666
- 2016 – 5,126
- 2017 – 5,292
- 2018 – 5,554
What Causes Truck Accidents?
There are many causes of truck accidents, but some common ones include:
- Following too closely
- Excessive speed
- Failure to follow trucking laws and regulations
- Disregarding construction zones
- Drowsy or over-time driving
- Loss of control
- Drunk driving
- Distracted driving
- Faulty equipment, and more.
What Damages Are Recoverable in a Truck Accident Case?
Following a truck accident in South Carolina, you may be eligible for compensation for damages including:
- Hospital expenses
- Physical therapy costs
- Rehabilitation costs
- Loss of income
- Future loss of income
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional damage, and more.
It is important to note that not all damages from an accident may be apparent immediately. For instance, it may take a few days for pain from injuries to begin. It’s important to talk to a truck accident lawyer immediately following a truck accident in South Carolina so they can help to preserve evidence, guide you through the process and make sure you get the compensation you need to cover current and future expenses.
5 Reasons Why You Should Hire a Truck Accident Lawyer:
1. To Get Better Settlements and Verdicts.
No attorney can guarantee specific results, and cases vary widely based on their individual facts. However, an attorney can help you evaluate the particular facts in your case and determine the best strategy to maximize your recovery. Our truck accident and personal injury lawyers are experienced negotiators and know the compensation you deserve for the physical, emotional, and financial damages caused by an accident involving a truck in South Carolina. The right lawyer won’t settle for less. View our recent results here.
2. To Identify All Related Damages.
There are three main types of damages recoverable in truck accident cases in South Carolina: special, general, and punitive. Special damages are sometimes referred to as actual damages and include compensation for medical bills, future medical care, lost wages, and more. General damages focus on your pain and suffering, permanent injuries, and emotional distress. These damages are typically harder to determine and are more subjective than special damages. Lastly, punitive damages are used to discipline the defendant and discourage bad conduct by sending a strong warning for their reckless, illegal, or willful behavior.
Recovering adequate compensation for damages without the help of a lawyer with an extensive understanding of SC truck accident laws and regulations can be difficult. Consider speaking with a South Carolina truck accident lawyer now for a free consultation by calling (803) 888-2200 or scheduling one online.
3. To Communicate With the Insurance Companies.
Dealing with the other party’s insurance company can be very overwhelming. From whether to give a statement (you almost never should), to taking an initial lowball settlement offer, to falling for delay tactics, there is a lot to be wary of when dealing with an insurance adjuster.
For instance, many people will take the first settlement offer from the insurance company because they need the money immediately to pay for medical bills or car repairs, they think it will cover all of their current and future expenses, or because they don’t know that they may be entitled to greater compensation. You should also be aware that the insurance company is trying to minimize its payouts and close claims, whereas discussing your case with a truck accident lawyer can help you protect your interests and maximize your compensation.
4. To Preserve Critical Evidence and Determine Liability.
Unlike most typical motor vehicle collisions, in truck accidents, multiple parties may be held liable for the crash. These parties include the trucking company, truck driver, truck manufacturer, vendors, cargo owners, road construction companies, government entities, and more. A truck accident attorney will help determine liability for a truck accident in SC by interviewing witnesses, reviewing the truck driver’s background, looking at the company’s insurance information, inspecting the vehicles involved, preserving key evidence, reviewing medical records, and more.
It is very important to act quickly in the aftermath of a tractor-trailer wreck to ensure that the responsible parties keep evidence such as driver logs, dispatch information, safety records, and electronic data from the truck itself. An experienced truck accident attorney can help you identify key parties and preserve this information for use in proving your case.
5. They Understand the Intricate Legal Process.
It can be very difficult to try to handle legal proceedings on your own, and it’s the last thing you want to do when you’re injured, focused on recovery, or mourning the loss of a loved one. Our award-winning team of truck accident and personal injury lawyers in South Carolina can help you recover physically, financially, and emotionally by taking the weight of the case off of you while you and your family focus on recovery.
Why Choose Cavanaugh & Thickens?
Our team helps individuals and families who have been affected by the negligent acts of others every single day – it’s what we do. Since our firm was founded, we have been dedicated to ensuring that our neighbors across Columbia and throughout the state of S.C. are well represented, taken care of and that their rights are protected.
The team at Cavanaugh and Thickens is here to answer your legal questions and keep your best interests in mind. Schedule a free consultation to discuss your rights, secure critical evidence, and learn about your options. Get the peace of mind and transparent guidance that you deserve.
Disclaimer: The opinions and ideas in this article are for informational purposes only and are not intended as legal advice. Each case is different and must be evaluated based on its own particular facts and merits.
About the author:
Eric Cavanaugh is a founding member and partner at Cavanaugh & Thickens, LLC in Columbia, SC. Eric has been practicing law over 13 years, putting his law experience and knowledge into helping those injured in truck accidents. He has tried several cases in both federal and state courts and has handled over one hundred tractor-trailer accident cases.