TRUCK ACCIDENTS


Have you or your loved one been injured in a truck accident? "Lawyers To Go" provides vigorous representation to those who have been injured in a truck accident. We are familiar with the techniques that may be used to cover up the actual cause of the accident. We are also familiar with state and federal trucking regulations in place to protect innocent motorists.

In 2006, over 385,000 large trucks (semi-trucks, tractor-trailers, 18-wheelers and other types of commercial trucks) were involved in crashes, according to a report by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). In the same year, fatal trucking accidents took the lives of 4,995 people, and injury accidents harmed another 106,000. Each truck accident involving an injury in the United States is estimated to cost around $219,000. As Arkansas roadways become more and more crowded, truck accidents are occurring more frequently and involving a multitude of drivers. Although truckers usually operate their vehicle in a safe and diligent manner, there are truck drivers who drive their large vehicle in a negligent and unlawful way that can prove dangerous to other drivers on the road.

The Arkansas truck accident attorneys at "Lawyers To Go" understand how to obtain the driver's log, as well as, how to determine whether the trucking company that hired the truck driver provided adequate safety training. We understand and know how to apply trucking regulations, the rules of the road, and other relevant regulations in establishing responsibility in a trucking accident. Not to mention, some truck drivers carry cameras in their cabs to take pictures in case there is a trucking accident in Arkansas or anywhere else. And most Trucks have onboard computers which collect information about the truck's location, condition, schedule, cargo, fuel mileage, driver performance and hours of service between truck stops. Finally, all moving violations of truck drivers are entered into a commercial truck driver's record and are discoverable in litigation.

If you have been injured in a truck accident, it is important to contact an experienced Arkansas accident attorney at "Lawyers To Go" right away, who can discuss your truck accident claim with you and ensure that your legal rights are protected. Please contact us the firm today for a full and free consultation.

In addition to Accident Causes and Q & A (below),
You may also click here for information on Arkansas State Trucking Regulations



Common Causes of Truck Accidents:

(Click on a cause below for explanation.).

Traffic Law Violations
Driver Error
Equipment Failure
Road Conditions

Traffic Law Violations

According to the NHTSA, 24 percent of large-truck drivers involved in fatal accidents in 2006 had a previous speeding conviction. A driver who violates a traffic law and in doing so causes a trucking accident is considered to be acting negligently. In addition to excessive speeding, this may include tailgating, improper lane changing, following too closely and failing to yield the right of way. All of these violations greatly increase the risk of a motor vehicle collision, particularly when committed by drivers of large trucks, which do not have the same reaction time as smaller motor vehicles. Victims who have been in a trucking accident where a traffic violation citation has been issued can use this as evidence in their claims.

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Driver Error

Driver error, influenced by one or more of the following, is the cause of most traffic violations leading to trucking accidents.

  • Fatigue or drowsiness
  • Distractions caused by Cell Phone Use or Texting
  • Inattention
  • Intoxication
  • Over-the-counter Drug Use
  • Illness
  • Prescription Drug Use
  • Aggressive driving
  • Inadequate training
  • Lack of experience
  • Improperly loaded or overloaded cargo
  • Lack of familiarity with the road
  • Blind Spots


Because fatigue or drowsiness leads to many truck wrecks, the Federal Carrier Safety Administration (FCSA) requires trucking companies to comply with "hours of service" rules. These rules state that a driver may not:

  • Drive more than 11 hours after 10 consecutive hours off duty (Drivers using a sleeper birth may split the 10-hour off-duty period into two intervals, provided one interval is at least two hours long.)
  • Drive beyond the 14th hour after coming on duty, following 10 consecutive hours off duty
  • Drive more than 60 hours over a period of seven consecutive days or 70 hours over a period of eight consecutive days
  • Start a seven to eight day driving period without being off duty for 34 consecutive hours
  • Victims can earn compensation if they have suffered injuries or property damage in a trucking accident that was caused by another driver's fatigue or drowsiness.


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Equipment Failure

In order to ensure proper operation, large trucks require a significant amount of maintenance and repair. This can be costly and time consuming but is necessary for the safe operation of the vehicle in U.S. interstates and highways. If maintenance is not performed in a timely and proper manner, it can cause equipment to malfunction and lead to trucking accidents. Many lawsuits have resulted from malfunction of the following components:

  • Accelerator
  • Brakes
  • Chassis
  • Fifth-wheel hitches
  • Fuel lines
  • Lighting equipment/lack of reflectors
  • Steering mechanisms
  • Tires
  • Wheels


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Road Conditions

Negligence can be cited in conjunction with a number of dangerous road conditions, including poor weather, road construction or debris. If a trucking accident occurs due to poor maintenance of the roads, victims are able to seek compensation from government entities that have acted negligently. Before a victim files a claim against a government entity, he or she should review the case with a qualified trucking accident attorney from "Lawyers To Go" to learn about rules and time limits associated with such claims. Victims can also seek compensation from a government entity for flawed road designs that contribute to collisions. Traffic control devices, merging lanes and poorly designed intersections can all be contributing factors in a trucking accident.

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Truck Accident Questions and Answers:

(Click on a cause below for explanation.).

What if the trucking accident was partially my fault?
How can I prove fault in a trucking accident?
What can I collect?
How much does an attorney charge?
How long will it take to finish my claim?
Where can I get more information about truck accident claims?

What if the trucking accident was partially my fault?

Beyond the damages suffered, the degree of fault is probably the most important factor in determining how much you may finally recover for your injury. In most cases, both you and the insurance company will know (by the circumstances surrounding the accident) the level of fault for both parties. Was the other party completely at fault? Mostly at fault? Or only a little at fault? An adjuster will reduce your recovery amount by your percentage of comparative fault. If you were only 10% at fault, your damages total will be reduced by 10%. Your recovery will not be reduced by any amount if the accident was clearly someone else's fault.

Arkansas is a Fault State. This means that your insurance company and the company for the other driver will pay damages for medical claims, wage loss and other expenses based on the degree of fault. In order to recover, you must be able to prove that the other person's fault was greater than yours. Under Arkansas comparative negligence law, the modified comparative fault rule states that you may be able to collect partial compensation for your injuries if you are less than 50% at fault. This means that an injured person cannot recover damages if the injured party was 50% or more at fault. If the injured party was 49% or less at fault, they can recover, and recovery is reduced by degree of fault. Therefore, if you are less than 50% at fault you will have a viable claim. But proving degree of negligence takes the experience of a trucking accident attorney in Arkansas from "Lawyers To Go."

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How can I prove fault in a trucking accident?

Trucking accidents often are caused due to driver negligence. However, there are other causes for these types of accidents:

  • Negligence of the trucking company;
  • Negligence of those responsible for inspecting, maintaining, and repairing the vehicle;
  • Poor road conditions;
  • Any combination of negligent acts.


To prove harm done, injuries must be directly linked to the truck accident, the collision itself and/or exposure to the truck's hazardous load. Trucking accident injuries can be catastrophic, if not fatal. Among others, they may include:

  • Cuts or lacerations
  • Broken bones
  • Amputation
  • Head and neck injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Abdominal injuries
  • Burns
  • Decapitation


Police reports, eyewitness testimony, expert witness testimony and photographs of the crash site are all strong pieces of evidence that can help prove the negligence of a driver or other negligent party.

For example, the statement of a bystander who witnessed a truck driver talking on a cell phone, speeding and/or running a red light just before crashing into a car is convincing evidence of driver negligence.

Truck accident claims can also include circumstantial or indirect evidence. For example, a police report stating that a truck driver involved in a truck wreck was discovered with bloodshot eyes, an odor of alcohol on his breath or an open container of liquor in the cab is likely to persuade a jury of truck driver negligence. For more information about proving your truck accident claim, contact an experienced Arkansas attorney at "Lawyers To Go" today to discuss your case and the litigation options that are available to you.

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What can I collect?

Compensation available for injuries sustained as the result of truck accident include current and future medical expenses for treating injuries caused by the accident, lost wages, future wages if the victim is no longer able to work, punitive damages for pain and suffering, and compensation for the family of a truck accident wrongful death victim, relating to the above areas. Parties that can be held liable for a truck accident include trucking companies and shipping/transportation companies. When someone else was negligent and caused you any type of injury, our Arkansas truck accident law firm knows you should not have to pay out of pocket for any expenses associated with that injury. We have the skills and experience needed to identify those losses you may not consider. With our help, you have the best chance of collecting full compensation and avoiding out-of-pocket expenses.

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How much does an attorney charge?

Truck accident attorney fees work different than most other lawyer's fees. You do not need to pay anything in advance out of your pocket, so you can definitely afford to hire an Arkansas truck accident attorney. In fact, many people who have been injured through no fault of their own do not have the money to hire a lawyer to protect their rights. That's the reason our fee is paid at the end of the case out of a portion of the recovery. If we are unable recover compensation for you, you do not owe us a fee. This is called a "contingency fee" arrangement and is common among Personal Injury attorneys.

In Arkansas, most injury attorneys charge a fee between 25% and 50% of your settlement. During your interview process with an attorney, they will inform you of the fee they normally charge. Fees will fluctuate depending on the type of case. An Arkansas truck accident attorney will charge a different percentage depending on the type of case.

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How long will it take to finish my claim?

The length of time necessary to conclude a trucking accident case depends upon a number of factors. The consequences resulting from a truck accident can be a long-term process of medical treatment that is incredibly expensive-ranging from emergency surgery to a lifetime of care and assistance, and physical therapy. You will not be in a position to consider settling your claim until you know the full extent of your injuries and how much the final medical expenses will total. Therefore, the amount of time required to heal is often one of the biggest factors in determining the length of time necessary to conclude a claim. In most cases, once you have been released from medical treatment, settlement negotiations can begin almost immediately. Most claims can be settled promptly at that point.

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Where can I obtain additional information about truck accident claims?

If you or your family members have been injured in a truck accident, contact "Lawyers To Go" in Fort Smith. Let us use our knowledge, experience and resources to compel responsibility for your injuries. We will vigorously pursue the maximum allowable compensation for your loss under the law. There is no charge for discussing your situation with us.

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