San Antonio Truck Accident Lawyer
Helping victims of 18-wheeler and commercial vehicle accidents in Texas
Commercial truck accidents are, sadly, a common occurrence on the busy Texas highways of today. Tractor-trailers and 18-wheelers can weigh up to 80,000lbs when they’re fully loaded, and they travel every major highway in and around the state in every kind of weather, night and day.
If you or someone you care about has been injured in one of the many 18-wheeler accidents each year, you need to seek legal assistance immediately. It is very important for your attorney to immediately send the at-fault driver and trucking company a Preservation of Evidence letter, to ensure vital evidence is saved. At the Law Offices of Pat Maloney, P.C., our qualified and experienced team is ready to get to work investigating what happened so we can secure the compensation you deserve. We’ve secured millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for commercial vehicle crash victims. Call a San Antonio truck accident lawyer today to get started.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Can your San Antonio truck accident lawyer help me?
- What kinds of injuries are caused by 18-wheeler accidents?
- What kinds of truck accidents can cause injuries?
- Who is liable in a San Antonio truck accident?
- Should I work with a San Antonio truck accident attorney?
- Do you have a truck accident lawyer near me?
Can your San Antonio truck accident lawyer help me?
When you or a loved one are suffering from major injuries as a result of a serious accident, you need an attorney with a law firm you can trust. As the longest serving plaintiffs’ injury firm in town, the Law Offices of Pat Maloney has been the name your friends and family has trusted for 70 years. When you work with a San Antonio truck accident attorney from our firm, you can rest easier knowing we have your best interests at heart.
- We give personalized attention to each of our truck accident cases. Clients meet directly with their attorney and legal team.
- Our team has a proven record of results, with a success rate of 99%. We have secured millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for our clients.
- We operate on a contingency fee basis, meaning you will not pay a dime in legal fees until we successfully secure the compensation you deserve.
- Pat Maloney, Jr. is board certified in Personal Injury Trial Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization; that means you’ll have a certified specialist on your side from start to finish.
Important information for your case
After a truck accident occurs, there are certain records you (or your attorney) will need to obtain. They include:
- The police report
- Your medical records from treatment after the crash
- Your insurance information
- Employment records/pay stubs
- Maintenance records of the truck
- Truck company safety records
- Driver logs, including documentation of their:
- Hours of service
- Safety records
- Licenses and training
- Any traffic citations
If you cannot get access to all of these documents and data right away, don’t worry – we can help. Just bring what you can to that initial meeting and let us take care of the rest.
What kinds of injuries are caused by 18-wheeler accidents?
Fatal truck accidents increased by 13% between 2020 and 2021, and there’s reason to believe that the 2022 statistics won’t be much better. I-10 and I-35 are major thoroughfares for big-rigs and commercial vehicles; they’re also two of the most congested roadways in San Antonio. When you have that many vehicles in one area at any given time, even the smallest mistake can lead to a catastrophic crash.
Injuries caused by truck accidents are often severe. We routinely assist folks who have suffered injuries such as:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Broken or dislocated bones
- Severe burns
- Loss of or damage to a bodily organ
- Dismemberment or amputation
- Significant disfigurement
- Other injuries that inhibit their daily activities
Each of these injuries requires extensive medical treatment. It is not uncommon for victims of truck accidents to be unable to work while they recover. As a result of this lost income, victims are often unable to support themselves, their families, or to pay the medical bills associated with the accident. In some cases, these injuries can prove fatal. If they do, having a specialist in Personal Injury Trial Law with decades of experience handling wrongful death claims can help.
Did you know?
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) was established on January 1st, 2000, as a division of the U.S. Department of Transportation, following the passing of the Motor Carrier Safety Improvement Act in 1999. The primary function of FMCSA is to reduce the number of accidents, injuries, and fatalities involving large trucks and buses.
What kinds of truck accidents can cause injuries?
Just like passenger vehicles, commercial vehicle drivers can cause rear-end and T-bone collisions, and even hit-and-runs. But because of their size and shape, there are some types of accidents that are unique to 18-wheelers and larger commercial trucks. They include:
- Head-on collisions. Head-on collisions can cause devastating injuries in any scenario, but they are especially deadly when a semi-truck is involved. The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety reports that “thirty percent of passenger vehicle occupants killed in two-vehicle crashes with a large truck in 2020 were in vehicles struck head-on by the truck.”
- Jackknife accidents. When a trailer slides in a different direction from the cab – typically creating an “L” or “V” shape, it’s called a jackknife. These accidents are dangerous because the trailer can be more than 50’ long and can easily cross multiple lanes of traffic.
- Underride collisions. This is when a vehicle, motorcycle, cyclist, or pedestrian slides under the side of the truck because the truck doesn’t have side guards on it. This type of crash can easily crush a person or smaller vehicle, and the injuries are often fatal.
- Blind spot accidents. The blind spots (sometimes called “no zones”) on a big rig can extend up to 30 feet behind it, 20 feet ahead of it, and multiple lanes on either side of it. For this reason, a truck on a highway can easily hit drivers on any side, and trucks in depots or warehouses can back over workers who may be behind them.
- Cargo spills. Cargo must be properly secured and stored. When it is not, it can fly out of the top or side of the truck. Other motorists can be hit with flying debris or end up in accidents if they swerve to avoid cargo in the road.
- Rollovers. Any vehicle can rollover, of course, but truck rollovers can be deadly. Not only can they spill cargo all over the road, but they can also crush multiple vehicles at once.
- Tire blowouts. When there are 18 wheels on a vehicle, a driver might not notice if one of them blows out – but other drivers will, especially if the debris goes sliding into the roadway.
Commercial trucks take a long time to get up to speed and require a longer time to slow down or stop. Drivers need to proceed around curves, into turns, and into lower gradients with caution. Any failure to do so may result in a devastating crash with serious, potentially fatal injuries.
Who is liable in a San Antonio truck accident?
Commercial trucking accidents often have multiple liable parties. There are two major types of truckers: “owner-operator” truckers and “company driver” truckers. Owner-operator truckers own their trucks and run their own business. In these cases, the driver may be liable for his or negligence. Common examples of truck driver negligence include:
Company drivers drive trucks provided to them by their employer. When company truck drivers are involved in a commercial trucking accident, their employers may be liable for injuries and damages if the trucker is viewed to be “at-fault.” That means a trucking company could be held accountable for:
- Unqualified truck drivers/ negligent hiring
- Inadequate safety training programs
- Forced violations of HOS rules and regulations
- Improperly maintained fleets
Sometimes, a broker or shipper is also liable, along with the trucking company, for its hiring practices. If the vehicle had a defective part – like faulty tired treads or an issue with the fuel or brake system – then the manufacturer may also be liable.
How truck and fleet maintenance affects your claim
Commercial truck drivers and their employers in the trucking industry have a responsibility to ensure that their rig abides by the regulations set forth by the FMCSA. Poor truck maintenance is often a contributing factor to commercial trucking accidents. These vehicles spend a great deal of time on the road towing large and heavy loads. As such, “wear-and-tear” often tends to take its toll on the vehicles, requiring the continual maintenance and monitoring of parts that play an essential role in the safety and functionality of the vehicle.
Before a commercial truck is deemed road-worthy according to FMCSA standards, it must first undergo a series of inspections designed to ensure the safety of the vehicle.
The following parts should always be in good working order:
- Service brakes (including trailer brake connections)
- Parking brake
- Lighting devices / reflectors
- Steering mechanism
- Windshield wipers
- Coupling devices
Commercial trucking accidents that are caused by poor truck maintenance make the owner and/or operator of the vehicle liable for any injuries or property damage.
Although some truck owners might view continual inspections to be excessive, they are an essential component in ensuring that all commercial trucks are road-safe so as to limit the potential for commercial trucking accidents.
Should I work with a San Antonio truck accident attorney?
The aftermath of a truck crash can be confusing, especially if you are dealing with injuries. Please understand that it is vital to secure legal assistance as soon as possible. Your attorney will get to work on securing all evidence in your case immediately.
Evidence begins to disappear soon after a crash occurs. This includes physical evidence from the scene of the crash as well as paper trails such as driver and company safety records, maintenance logs, and any history of wrongdoing.
Your attorney will work through the courts and with investigators and experts to obtain and secure all evidence that is necessary to prove the other party’s liability. Once we have established liability, we can build your case for compensation for your:
- Medical costs and related expenses
- Lost wages and lost earning potential
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of personal enjoyment and companionship
- Property damage
We may also seek punitive damages if applicable to your case.
Do you have a truck accident lawyer near me?
The Law Offices of Pat Maloney is located at 239 E Commerce St. in San Antonio, TX, in the center of Downtown. We own one of the most historic and beautiful buildings in San Antonio. There is available parking. If you are too injured to travel, we can arrange a video or phone conference, or an in-hospital visit.
Helping San Antonio truck accident victims and their families move forward
When it comes to negotiating a settlement with an insurance company or preparing the case for trial, the Law Offices of Pat Maloney can help. You don’t have to shoulder these burdens alone. If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, put our experience and skills on your side. Fill out our contact form or call us schedule a free consultation with a San Antonio truck accident lawyer.
- Truck Drivers Are Sometimes Negligent, But Others May Be Liable
- What Information Do I Need After a Trucking Accident?
- Trucking Accidents: Why Regulation Violations Are Dangerous
- The 5 Steps of Commercial Truck Accident Settlements
- The Most Common Causes of 18-Wheeler Accidents in Texas
- Big Rig Wrecks – Causes and Prevention of Accidents