Truck accidents are nothing short of devastating. It is not uncommon for a crash involving a large truck to include significant property damage, severe injuries, and even the loss of someone’s life. If you need a New Orleans truck accident lawyer, please contact us here at The Desiah Law Firm.

Not all truck accident attorneys are the same. Our truck accident lawyer, Travis Desiah, has built a reputation throughout the area as being not only one of the top New Orleans truck accident lawyers but also a caring and compassionate attorney. He has handled numerous big truck accidents and is experienced with the unique laws and regulations governing commercial vehicles.

Unlike motor vehicle accidents, commercial accidents involving big trucks involve special laws and regulations. For example, federal law requires commercial vehicles, such as semi-trailer trucks, to turn on the vehicle’s hazard warning flashing lights whenever the vehicle is stopped on the highway or shoulder for any reason other than a necessary traffic stop. In addition, the law requires for these hazard warning lights to be left on until the vehicle’s external warning devices are in position.

Our firm believes the client comes first. That means we work hard to make sure you get the most amount of money from your case. Contact us today and tell us more about your truck accident case. A New Orleans truck accident lawyer will partner with you and help you take the next steps forward.

What Makes Truck Accidents So Dangerous?

Truck accidents often result in more severe injuries, greater property damage, and a higher likelihood of fatalities compared to a car accident. New Orleans truck accidents are more dangerous and lead to catastrophic injuries more often than other auto accidents due to various factors. These include:

Truck accidents often result in more severe injuries, greater property damage, and a higher likelihood of fatalities compared to a car accident. New Orleans truck accidents are more dangerous and lead to catastrophic injuries more often than other auto accidents due to various factors. These include:

The Size and Weight of a Commercial Vehicle

Trucks, especially commercial tractor-trailers, are significantly larger and heavier than most other vehicles on the road. When they collide with smaller vehicles, the sheer mass difference can lead to catastrophic damage and severe injuries. A fatal truck accident often occurs because of this size and weight difference. Sadly, our truck accident lawyers see this far too often.

The Stopping Distance a Commercial Vehicle Requires

Their weight doesn’t just make them deadly, it makes them hard to stop too. Trucks require a much longer stopping distance than smaller passenger vehicles due to their weight. This means they might not be able to stop quickly, leading to rear-end collisions or being unable to avoid accidents in congested traffic. Truck accident cases often find a truck driver simply couldn’t stop in time.

Trucks Have Large Blind Spots

Trucks have substantial blind spots, particularly on the sides and rear. These blind spots, also known as “no-zones,” can make it difficult for truck drivers to see other vehicles, increasing the risk of accidents when changing lanes or making turns. It is not uncommon for a Louisiana truck accident to occur because the truck driver couldn’t see the vehicle he ended up colliding with.

The Drivers Are Too Often Fatigued

Fatigue affects reaction time and decision-making abilities, significantly increasing the risk of truck accidents. Truck drivers often face several factors that contribute to fatigue:

  • Long Hours- A truck company may require a truck driver to frequently work long hours, often exceeding the standard eight-hour workday. They may spend extended periods behind the wheel to meet tight delivery schedules or cover vast distances, leading to physical and mental exhaustion.
  • Irregular Schedules- The nature of the job means irregular schedules and long-haul trips, leading to disrupted sleep patterns for a truck driver. Sleep deprivation or insufficient rest can result in fatigue and reduced alertness while driving.
  • Pressure to Meet Deadlines- There’s often pressure on drivers from trucking companies to meet strict delivery deadlines. This pressure can lead to driving for extended periods without adequate breaks or rest, increasing the risk of fatigue-related accidents. As a well-respected Louisiana truck accident lawyer, Travis Desiah will look into your case and see if this is a factor.
  • Monotonous Environment- Driving makes all of us a little bored and sleepy, and those who do it professionally are not immune to this. Long stretches of highway driving in relatively unchanging environments can be mentally taxing and contribute to driver fatigue.
  • Health Issues- It’s tough being on the road so long, so often. Health problems such as sleep disorders or poor lifestyle habits on the road can exacerbate fatigue. These issues might include sleep apnea, inadequate diet, limited exercise opportunities, and overall poor health management due to the demands of the job.

To combat driver fatigue and its associated risks, regulations such as Hours of Service (HOS) regulations exist to limit the number of consecutive hours a driver can work and mandate rest breaks. However, our New Orleans truck accident lawyers have found that despite these regulations, fatigue remains a significant concern in the trucking industry. Efforts to address it through better scheduling, improved working conditions, and increased awareness of driver health are ongoing but haven’t yet reached a point where large truck accidents no longer occur.

Trucks Require Complex Maneuvering

It’s not always truck driver negligence that causes an accident. Trucks have limited maneuverability compared to smaller vehicles. Negotiating turns, navigating narrow roads, or responding to sudden obstacles can be challenging for truck drivers.

Cargo Shifts or Hazards Make Steering Difficult

Trucking accidents can be the result of twists and turns that have shifted what the truck is hauling. Improperly loaded or unsecured cargo can shift during transit, leading to loss of control or spillage, causing accidents or hazards for other drivers on the road.

The Driver May be Distracted

A New Orleans truck accident attorney will look into exactly what the driver was doing when the crash occurred. Was he on his phone? Changing the radio station? Eating dinner? Just like other car accidents, distracted driving often plays a part in truck accidents.

Trucks Can Have Mechanical Issues

As an experienced New Orleans truck accident lawyer, Travis Desiah knows that the trucking company or truck manufacturer may be more to blame than the driver. Issues with brakes, tires, or other mechanical components can pose significant risks. Regular maintenance and inspections are crucial, but lapses in upkeep can lead to accidents. We will also look into this possibility during your truck accident claim.

Red Truck And Light Vehicle Frontal Collision

Common Injuries Stemming From a Commercial Truck Accident

Commercial truck accidents can result in various types of injuries due to the size and force involved in such collisions. Here at our personal injury law firm, we regularly see such injuries as:

  • Whiplash and Other Serious Neck Injuries- When your car hits a truck, you’re going to stop and stop fast. Sudden jerking movements during impact can cause whiplash, leading to neck strain, sprains, or more severe cervical spine injuries.
  • Back Injuries- Truck crashes can lead to back injuries, ranging from muscle strains to herniated discs or spinal cord damage. These injuries are incredibly expensive and often require a New Orleans truck accident attorney to ensure you’re fully compensated.
  • Head and Brain Injuries- Some of the most serious injuries from head-on collisions involve a victim’s brain. Traumatic brain injuries (TBI), concussions, or skull fractures can occur due to the force of impact, leading to varying degrees of cognitive impairment or long-term disabilities.
  • Broken Bones- The sheer force involved in a truck accident can cause multiple fractures or broken bones, affecting limbs, ribs, or the pelvis.
  • Internal Injuries- Blunt force trauma can cause internal injuries such as organ damage, internal bleeding, or damage to the lungs or abdomen.
  • Amputations- Severe accidents can lead to limb crush injuries or traumatic amputations, resulting in permanent disabilities and keeping a person from gainful employment and enjoying the lifestyle they were accustomed to in the past.
  • Psychological Trauma- Not all injuries can be seen. Emotional distress, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression are also common after truck accidents, impacting the victim’s mental health.
  • Death- Sadly, fatal crashes are not uncommon when a large 18-wheeler truck hits a car. Truck accident fatalities are devastating to the loved ones left behind.

What Compensation Can Victims Get From Truck Accident Claims?

Truck accident victims often come to us because they’re not sure what they’re entitled to, and how much. We are here to fight for you, by your side every step of the way. We will negotiate and litigate with the trucking company and any necessary insurance company to ensure you get compensation for:

Medical Expenses

Motor vehicle accidents often result in bodily injury, especially those involving a large truck. You are entitled to coverage for past, current, and future medical bills related to injuries sustained in the accident, including your hospital stay, doctor appointment bills, surgeries, medication, physical therapy, and rehabilitation.

Lost Wages

You are also owed compensation by guilty trucking companies for any lost income if you could not work during your recovery period. This also includes loss of future earning capacity if the injuries result in long-term disability, like paralysis or traumatic brain injury.

Property Damage

After a truck accident, you can typically make a claim for various types of property damage. Throughout the claims process, you may ask for reimbursement for repairs or replacement of your vehicle that was damaged in the accident. You can also get compensation for any personal items damaged in the accident, such as your phone, jewelry, clothing, or other belongings inside the vehicle. It’s likely your car had so much damage you couldn’t drive it for a while, maybe never again! We will also fight for reimbursement for the cost of renting a vehicle while your car is being repaired or replaced.

Pain and Suffering

Pain and suffering resulting from a truck crash can include:

  • Physical Pain- This involves the actual discomfort, agony, and physical limitations caused by injuries sustained in the accident, such as broken bones, whiplash, burns, or chronic pain.
  • Emotional Distress- This includes psychological trauma resulting from the accident, such as anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), sleep disturbances, or severe emotional anguish.
  • Loss of Enjoyment- After the truck accident occurred, you may have had to give up things you once loved. You can be awarded compensation for the inability to participate in activities you previously enjoyed due to injuries caused by the accident, like not being able to ride your bike or run in marathons.
  • Disfigurement or Disability- If your injuries will result in permanent damage, we will fight for compensation for the emotional toll of visible scars, disfigurement, or disabilities resulting from the accident that affect your quality of life and self-esteem.
  • Loss of Consortium- Loss of consortium refers to the deprivation or impairment of the benefits and companionship that a person derives from a relationship due to injuries sustained by their partner or family member. If the injured person’s injuries significantly impact their ability to provide companionship, affection, support, or intimacy within their relationship, the uninjured partner or family member might seek compensation for this loss.Punitive Damages

Punitive damages are rare for a personal injury lawsuit but do happen. They are only awarded in cases involving extreme negligence or intentional harm. Perhaps the trucking company broke the law by forcing the drivers to work longer than regulations allow or maybe the driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Punitive damages may be awarded when the defendant’s actions are found to be:

  • Grossly Negligent- When the defendant’s actions go beyond simple negligence and are considered reckless or extremely careless, the court may award punitive damages.
  • Intentional or Malicious- It may also be awarded in cases where the defendant’s actions were deliberate or showed a willful disregard for the safety and rights of others.
  • Fraudulent- It is also possible for these damages to be awarded if the defendant acted fraudulently or deceitfully, leading to harm or injury to another party.
  • Courts consider punitive damages when the trucking company’s or a truck driver’s negligence is deemed so unacceptable that additional measures are necessary to punish and discourage similar conduct, like repeat drunk driving charges.
Red Truck And Light Vehicle Frontal Collision

Filing a Wrongful Death Case After a Truck Accident.

In the state of Louisiana, certain family members or designated individuals can file a wrongful death lawsuit. This typically includes spouses, children, parents, or other close relatives, although specifics may vary based on individual circumstances. Damages that can be pursued in a wrongful death lawsuit may include economic damages (such as medical expenses, funeral costs, and lost financial support) as well as non-economic damages (such as pain and suffering, loss of companionship, and emotional distress). Be aware though that Louisiana has a statute of limitations for filing wrongful death claims. In most but not all cases, the lawsuit must be filed within one year from the date of the deceased person’s death.

Contact The Desiah Law Firm, L.L.C. to Speak With an Experienced New Orleans Truck Accident Lawyer

If you or a loved one has been in an accident with one of the large commercial trucks that regularly drive around our roads and highways, contact our New Orleans truck accident law firm right away. We will fight on your behalf to get you the compensation you need in order to rebuild your life as best as possible.