Tractor Trailer Accidents Can Be Devastating. Our Stroudsburg Tractor Trailer Accident Attorneys Can Help.
With I-80 and Route 33 serving as some of the busiest roadways in Pennsylvania that connect with or intersect through Stroudsburg, it is an unfortunate reality that tractor trailer accidents are a common occurrence. When these accidents strike, it can feel like you have limited options, especially as medical bills pile.
You don’t have to handle it alone. The trucking companies will do everything in their power to provide you with minimum financial relief, and the insurance companies will point fingers to do the same. But Munley Law knows how to help.
With more than 60 years of experience fighting for the rights of injured Pennsylvanians including those in Stroudsburg, Munley Law is the firm for your tractor trailer accident.
If you or a loved one were hurt in a tractor trailer accident in Stroudsburg, do not take on the trucking companies alone. Our Stroudsburg truck accident lawyer is here to support you and your family in your time of need.
$32 Million Wrongful Death
$26 Million Truck Accident
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$12 Million Product Liability
$9 Million Truck Accident
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$6.5 Million Traumatic Brain Injury
$5 Million Medical Malpractice
$5 Million Bus Accidents
How Common Are Tractor Trailer Accidents in Pennsylvania?
In March 2023, a crossover tractor trailer crash took the lives of three on Route 33, including a juvenile. According to reports, the truck driver traveled off the roadway and hit an embankment before moving back into the roadway. At that time, the driver then collided with the center median and struck the passenger vehicles moving in the opposite direction.
A devastating accident, but one all too common. According to data from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT), heavy trucks or tractor trailers accounted for 6.1 percent of all crashes in the Keystone State in 2021. This equated to 7,244 crashes. While this may seem like a low percentage, tractor trailer collisions were the cause of 12.5 percent of all fatal crashes in the state.
Unfortunately, there has been a rise in collisions with tractor trailers–with 2021 having the second-highest rate in the last five years. Due to this, motorists need to know what options they have if an accident occurs and who they can turn to for guidance.
What Causes of A Truck Accident?
As with all motor vehicle accidents, there are certain elements that a personal injury law firm will consider when determining the cause of a tractor trailer collision.
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), the most common causes of semi-truck accidents are:
Speeding/Aggressive Truck Driving
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that for the last two decades, speeding has been the cause of 29% of all traffic fatalities. Though semi truck drivers are expected to meet strict deadlines, it does not excuse the fact that driving aggressively can lead to catastrophic consequences. In fact, some of the most devastating collisions are a result of speeding or aggressive driving behaviors. Further, speeding can cause truck rollovers when making turns, or if the truck is not properly loaded leading to catastrophic injuries for the truck driver and any passenger vehicles in its path.
Truck Driver Inattention
Data from the NHTSA found that more than 3,000 individuals were killed in 2020 as a result of distracted driving. Be it cell phone calls, texting, eating and drinking, or using a navigation device while driving, a single moment of inattention can lead to a life-altering consequence. To combat distracted driving by truck drivers, the FMCSA restricts the use of all hand-held mobile devices by commercial motor vehicle drivers. This includes using at least one hand to make or take a phone call, dialing the phone or pressing more than one button, and reaching for a phone that causes the driver to move out of a seated position.
In addition to cell phone usage behind the wheel, drivers may also lose focus of the road when driving while fatigued. Often, truck drivers are expected to make long treks to their destination while alone, making it difficult at times to get the rest needed. However, the FMCSA has also created safe driving regulations for property-carrying drivers which includes a maximum of 11 hours of driving per day after 10 consecutive hours off duty. Further, drivers must take a 30-minute break after a period of eight cumulative hours of driving, without at least a 30-minute interruption.
When drivers turn to other methods to stay awake, it can lead to fatal accidents and extensive damages.
While most truck driving collisions are the result of human error, there are situations where the accident may have been outside of the driver’s control. In cases of mechanical failure, a driver is under the pressure of safely moving their vehicle off of the road. Unfortunately, that isn’t always possible.
For example, a tire blowing out or brake failure can result in a truck driver losing control of the vehicle, ending in collins, jackknifes, and casualties. In these cases, the part or truck manufacturer can be held liable for the injuries sustained by victims.
Environmental factors can also lead to large truck collisions. The following are some of the most common weather and road conditions in Pennsylvania that can cause or contribute to a large truck accident in Stroudsburg.
- Adverse weather conditions such as rain, snow, ice or sleet, wind
- Road defects like debris, potholes, missing signage or road markings
- Traffic conditions including heavy traffic areas, construction zones, changing road patterns, etc.
- Infrastructure such as intersections, sharp turns, steep inclines/declines, and one-way roads
While environmental factors may have played into a truck accident, it is important to remember that drivers must remain in control of their vehicles regardless of these external factors. If you are involved in a truck accident during inclement weather, you do have options for financial recovery.
Who Can Be Held Responsible for a Tractor Trailer Accident in Stroudsburg?
The cause of the semi truck accident will ultimately determine who is to be held liable for your injuries. The following parties may be liable for a tractor trailer accident:
- The truck driver: Truck drivers are responsible for maintaining safe driving practices and being in control of their vehicles at all times. However, be it human error or negligence, if the driver caused an accident and victims sustained injuries as a result, they can be held responsible. Truck drivers are required to carry commercial vehicle insurance as well should they be involved in a wreck.
- The trucking company: If a trucking company does not practice due diligence in the hiring of drivers and an ill-equipped employee is on the road who causes an accident, you may be able to hold the employer responsible through vicarious liability. Further, if an employer is forcing drivers to stay behind the wheel for longer periods of time than are legally permitted, the argument can be made that the company is at fault for the driver’s actions.
- The truck manufacturer: If a part on the semi truck is faulty and it causes an accident, victims of truck accidents may be able to sue the truck manufacturer for their damages. However, evidence must be preserved to prove that it was a defective part or design flaw.
- The mechanic who serviced the truck: Trucks undergo rigorous inspections to ensure they are road safe and legal. If a mechanic or service technician is not diligent in their inspection and repair of a truck and that negligence causes an accident, you can take legal action against that technician.
- The loading company: Semi trucks need to be loaded properly in order to ensure that not only the property within is safe, but that the weight distribution on the bed of the truck will not cause the truck to sway, jackknife, or buckle. Should the truck be improperly loaded and you get injured as a result, the loading company can be held responsible.
- Another driver: Despite the size of the truck, sometimes a small passenger vehicle can cause an accident involving a tractor trailer. Should another driver act in a negligent manner causing a collision with a semi truck and other passenger vehicles, that other driver can be held accountable.
- The government: In some cases, poor roadways may lead to vehicle damage and accidents. If a government-maintained roadway is the cause of a truck accident, that agency or other government-funded body can be sued for negligence.
Proving liability is challenging, but a Stroudsburg tractor trailer accident lawyer from Munley Law can help during a free case evaluation.
How Is Negligence Established in Stroudsburg Semi Truck Collisions?
In order to have a successful Stroudsburg tractor trailer accident case, you and your legal team need to establish negligence by the at-fault party. The following must be proven in a semi truck collision:
- The defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff
- There was a breach of that duty
- The plaintiff suffered an injury
- The breach of duty caused the injury
However, it can be difficult to prove negligence in these cases as the trucking company is likely to shift blame to avoid pay out. There is also the possibility that multiple parties can be at fault for the accident, which can complicate court proceedings and insurance payouts.
Because of these complexities, you’ll need to preserve as much evidence as possible before the truck driver, company, or another party tries to minimize their fault in the accident.
To do so, you’ll want to gain access to the following forms of evidence:
- The accident/police report complete with a thorough inspection of the semi truck
- Photos and video surveillance if available from local businesses, homes, and vehicle dash cameras if used
- Witness statements and contact information
- Alcohol and drug testing of the driver
- Electronic log from the truck driver
- Spoliation letter to preserve all evidence
You will need to act promptly to get this information and to preserve the integrity of your claim. Further, you need to be mindful of the statute of limitations on a tractor trailer accident in Stroudsburg.
Under Pa. C.S.A. § 5524, victims of tractor trailer accidents and other large truck accidents have two years from the date of the injury to file a personal injury claim against the at-fault party. In addition, Pennsylvania follows a modified comparative fault rule, which means if you are 51 percent or more at fault for an accident, you cannot recover damages in a claim.
If you are unsure of your role in a truck accident, Munley Law is here to help.
What Can I Recover in a Stroudsburg Collision?
If you or a loved one were hurt in a tractor trailer accident in or around Stroudsburg, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. Depending on the severity of your injuries, you can recover economic and non-economic damages including:
- Current and future medical bills
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of Consortium
- Funeral expenses
- Punitive damages if the truck driver or trucking company was grossly negligent in their actions or inactions
To determine all possible recovery options, consult with a Munley Law truck accident attorney.
How Will A Munley Law Personal Injury Lawyer Help Me?
We expect truck drivers to have a command of their vehicles that not only makes their hauls safe but keeps other motorists safe on the roadways, too. Unfortunately, tractor trailer accidents are all too common in Stroudsburg.
However, Munley Law can help. By contacting the tractor trailer accident lawyers of Munley Law, you can rest assured knowing that your case will be handled with the expertise and compassion needed to get you and your loved ones through this difficult time.
The Stroudsburg truck accident attorneys will:
- Investigate the cause of the accident to ensure that all evidence has been accounted for.
- Speak with the insurance companies and at fault parties to get you the maximum compensation.
- Represent you in a claims process or take your case to court.
- Negotiate a fair settlement or verdict for your losses.
- Handle your truck accident case with respect and efficiency.
- Be there every step of the way.
What makes our tractor trailer accident lawyers different from other personal injury firms is our experience. We settled a $26 million truck accident for our client, and we can get you the compensation needed for your specific case. We do this by:
- Calculating your total losses. This includes your medical expenses, therapy and rehabilitation needs, lost wages and diminished earning capacity, disability, emotional trauma, and funeral expenses in the case of wrongful death.
- Keeping up to date with all motor safety laws and trucking regulations. Everyday law makers are working to improve roadway safety and with that, comes new requirements and regulations for truck drivers. If we find that a truck driver was not abiding by the law, or the trucking company was cutting corners which lead to your injuries, we’ll hold them accountable.
- Keeping you informed during the entire process. We don’t believe in keeping our clients in the dark about their cases. We work with you step-by-step to ensure that your questions are answered and that you feel heard in this difficult situation.
Have questions about your case? You can request a free case evaluation by contacting our Stroudsburg injury lawyers at 570-669-3606 or by connecting with us online.
Our Stroudsburg Truck Accident Lawyer Can Handle the Challenges of a Tractor Trailer Lawsuit
Because of the difficult nature and complexity of truck accident cases, you need a law firm with the experience and dedication to take on your claim. By nature, tractor trailer accidents are more difficult to manage alone because of the number of parties who can be held liable; the intricacies of insurance claims; the extent of the damages both the passenger vehicle and truck may have sustained; and the involved drivers’ injuries. In addition, truckers are governed by both state and federal regulations meaning there are multiple laws that the truck driver and company are held to. Failure to do so could cost them large sums of money and can cost accident victims everything.
In 2020, the trucking industry was worth over $730 billion–and to keep it lucrative, the trucking companies will fight vigorously to pay out the bare minimum in claims. But we don’t take no for an answer.
If you or a loved one sustained injuries as a result of an accident with a tractor trailer in or around Stroudsburg, you have a right to recover compensation for your medical expenses and related losses. For a no-obligation, free consultation, contact the Stroudsburg tractor trailer accident lawyers of Munley Law 24/7 by calling 70-669-3606 or contacting us online.
Stroudsburg Practice Areas
Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys
27 N 6th St,
Stroudsburg, PA 18360