If you’ve spent any amount of time driving around Ventura, you know how unnerving it can be to share the road with a semi-truck. These huge vehicles are built to transport heavy materials and hazardous chemicals that only add to the danger when there’s an accident. According to data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), there were nearly 415,000 reported crashes involving trucks in 2020, with nearly 24% (101,000) of these accidents causing injuries.
Ventura is not unlike many cities in California in that it sees both its fair share of large trucks on the road and many accidents involving them and smaller vehicles. When that happens, those drivers in the smaller vehicles are especially vulnerable to serious injuries and even death. In these tragic situations, it’s important to understand what rights and options you have to take action.
Quirk Accident and Injury Attorneys Will Guide You
Being involved in a truck accident in Ventura can leave you feeling overwhelmed and alone. You may not only be facing serious injuries but a number of different possible outcomes for your recovery. At minimum, you’ll likely have extensive medical bills and expenses, and may not be able to enjoy your life as you once did.
All of this factors into your potential legal options, which our team at Quirk Accident and Injury Attorneys can assist you with. Our experienced Ventura personal injury lawyers have the knowledge and skill to help you navigate these tragic accidents, making sure you get the treatment and support you need under California law. Don’t wait to get help, contact us today for a free consultation.
Dangers of Ventura Truck Accidents
While every vehicle accident that happens in Ventura carries with it an element of danger, it should come as no surprise that the dangers associated with truck accidents are heightened because of a variety of different factors, such as:
- Severe injuries – Due to the size and weight of commercial trucks, accidents involving these vehicles can result in severe injuries to drivers and passengers in other vehicles.
- Fatalities – Truck accidents are more likely to result in fatalities than normal car accidents due to the force of impact involved, the size and weight disparity between the vehicles, and the materials the truck could be carrying.
- Property damage – Not only do truck accidents often result in significant injuries, but also in extensive property damage to vehicles, buildings, roads, bridges, and other infrastructure. Moreover, the cost of fixing this damage can be quite substantial.
- Traffic congestion – The vast majority of truck accidents can lead to significant traffic congestion, especially on busy highways and interstates. This can result in delays, frustration, and even more accidents as drivers try to navigate around the accident scene.
- Environmental hazards – Another often terrible result of a truck accident is in environmental hazards, particularly if the truck is carrying hazardous materials. Spills or leaks from these materials can contaminate the surrounding environment, posing a risk to human health and the ecosystem.
As you can see, the potential results and fallout from truck accidents are wide-ranging. While the environmental hazards and impact on the community are certainly unpleasant, it’s often the injuries and other damages that these accidents cause which have a far more personal impact on the people of Ventura.
Common Injuries in Ventura Truck Accidents
Again, perhaps the most dangerous element of a truck accident in Ventura is the injuries that they cause to drivers and passengers in other vehicles. Very often, even a minor collision with a large truck results in serious injuries to those in the smaller vehicle. Some of the most common injuries in truck accidents include:
- Head and Brain Injuries – Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are a common result of truck accidents. These injuries can range from mild concussions to severe brain damage, leading to cognitive, emotional, and physical impairments.
- Spinal Cord Injuries – Truck accidents can also cause spinal cord injuries, which can result in paralysis, loss of sensation, and chronic pain. These injuries can significantly impact a person’s quality of life.
- Broken Bones – Broken bones are another common injury resulting from truck accidents. These injuries can range from minor fractures to severe breaks that require surgery and a long recovery period.
- Burns – Truck accidents can cause burns, which can range from minor to severe. Burns can be caused by fire, hot liquids, and chemicals, and can result in scarring, disfigurement, and emotional trauma.
- Soft Tissue Injuries – Soft tissue injuries, such as whiplash and strains, are common in truck accidents. These injuries can cause significant pain and discomfort and may require physical therapy or chiropractic treatment.
- Internal Injuries – Truck accidents can also cause internal injuries, such as internal bleeding, organ damage, and pneumothorax (collapsed lung). These injuries can be life-threatening and require immediate medical attention.
After any truck accident, it’s absolutely critical that you seek medical attention, especially if you have suffered more serious injuries. Once you get medical care, you can begin piecing together your next steps. This depends on the circumstances that surround your accident, but our team can help you in this regard.
What Causes Truck Accidents in Ventura?
Before figuring out what your legal options are, you’ll need to understand what caused the truck accident that injured you. Although they are much more damaging than a normal vehicle accident, the causes of truck accidents aren’t dissimilar. Moreover, there are a variety of different factors and causes that can lead to these accidents, like:
- Negligent driving – Like any accident, negligent driving is one of the leading causes of truck accidents. This can include a variety of negligent acts, like distracted driving, speeding, driving while fatigued, and driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- Poor maintenance – Regular maintenance of commercial trucks is vital to ensuring they are safe to operate. Poor maintenance can result in mechanical failures, such as brake failure or tire blowouts, which can cause accidents.
- Road conditions – Poor road conditions, such as potholes or construction zones, can also contribute to truck accidents. Trucks are larger and heavier than most vehicles, making them more difficult to maneuver on uneven or damaged roads.
- Inclement weather – Although Ventura has a fairly stable climate with great weather, it’s also prone to certain conditions like rain and fog that can also contribute to truck accidents. These conditions can make it more difficult for drivers to see and maneuver their vehicles, increasing the risk of accidents.
- Improper loading – Improper loading or securing of cargo can also cause truck accidents. Overloaded or unsecured cargo can shift during transit, causing the truck to become unbalanced and unstable.
- Inexperienced drivers – Inexperienced drivers may not have the necessary skills or training to operate commercial trucks safely. This can increase the risk of accidents, particularly in challenging driving conditions.
Liability in Truck Accidents
Another major element of an injury claim in a truck accident is figuring out who was responsible for the accident. A truck accident differs from a normal vehicle accident in that a number of different parties could potentially be responsible, some all at once. Ultimately, it depends on who acted negligently and if that contributed to causing the accident. Normally, any of the following parties can be held liable in a truck accident:
- Truck drivers
- Trucking company owners
- Parts manufacturers
- Owners of the cargo or materials being transported
- The trucking maintenance company
- Government entities
By working with our team of experienced Ventura truck accident lawyers, we can help you narrow down the liable parties and then move forward with bringing a claim against them.
How Do You File a Claim After a Ventura Trucking Accident?
In California, the law is very clear when it comes to holding responsible parties accountable for causing an accident that results in injuries. Under the law, you or any other injury victim has the legal right to file a claim for damages against the responsible party, whoever that may be.
While this can be a challenging and complex process when it comes to truck accidents, our team of experienced Ventura truck accident lawyers can help you navigate this process from start to finish.
Generally speaking, filing a claim is done either through the customary insurance claim process or by filing a lawsuit in court. Both of these actions allow you the opportunity to recover certain damages from the liable party, which can include:
- Medical expenses, including ongoing care
- Property damage
- Emotional distress
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages, in cases where the liable party’s conduct was judged to be especially reckless.
In filing a claim, you’re able to protect your rights and hopefully recover full and fair compensation for the many damages that you have suffered. Still, what you’re ultimately able to recover depends on the facts that surround your accident and how well you can present your claim. By working with our team of experienced truck accident lawyers, we can handle this responsibility and make sure that you receive the compensation that you’re entitled to under the law.
Experience and Guidance You Can Trust in Ventura
There are few accidents as frightening as one involving a large commercial truck. When you’ve been injured in one of these accidents in Ventura, we want you to know that you don’t have to face it alone. At Quirk Accident and Injury Attorneys, we have experience and guidance that you can trust. We’ll explain your options and help you navigate this incredibly challenging time to make sure you are able to get on the road to recovery. To set up a free consultation, contact us today.