In Missouri, Interstate 70 (I-70) is notorious for dangerous truck collisions. No matter the reason, a rogue semi-truck is one of the deadliest vehicles on the road. The reason that semis are so dangerous on roadways is that they weight many tons. Traveling at high speeds, semi-trucks and tractor-trailers can lose control. When a semi collides with a smaller vehicle, the result can be devastating. Additionally, cargo can become dislodged and turn into projectiles and cause further damage to vehicles on our roadways.
I-70 is a major highway running through Missouri. This highway sees a large number of semi-truck and tractor-trailer accidents due to the sheer number of truckers that use the highway to transport goods across the country and state.
Negligent Semi Drivers
One reason that semi-trucks are so incredibly dangerous is that drivers can make mistakes or become negligent. In a vehicle this large, safe driving is critical. A negligent driver can cause serious problems on Missouri highways, such as I-70. Here are a few examples of semi driver negligence:
- Driving faster than the posted speed limit
- Driving while talking or texting on a cell phone
- Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Disobeying traffic lights and signs
- Cutting curves too sharply
- Driving while fatigued
- Improper maintenance on the tractor or trailer
- Failing to properly yield the right-of-way to other drivers
- Sudden lane changes
- Driving too fast for road conditions
- Violating Federal Motor Carrier Regulations
Types of Injuries Caused by Truck Crashes on I-70
Injuries caused by semi-trucks can vary dramatically. In the case of a fender bender the occurs in stop and go traffic, injuries could be as minor as a few bruises or whiplash. In the event of an incredibly serious accident, common injuries include:
- Bone fractures and breaks
- Soft tissue injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Muscle contusions
- Spinal cord injuries
- Lifelong disability
Some of these accidents even result in death.
Semi-trucks and tractor-trailers are held to strict regulations by the federal government. These regulations include:
- Cargo weight limits
- Methods of securing cargo to the trailer
- Load types
- Safety features such as warning lights and signage for oversize loads
If a truck that has failed to abide by these regulations causes an accident, the trucker can face serious consequences. The Federal Motor Carrier Regulations were created to prevent top-heavy loads, insecure cargo, and other potentially dangerous situations on America’s roadways. Fines and additional penalties can be imposed on drivers who do not abide by the regulations.
Getting Compensation After a Truck Crash on I-70
If you are in an accident with a semi-truck or tractor-trailer on I-70, you want to be fairly compensated for any property damage or injuries that you sustain in the accident. Accident victims should speak to a lawyer about how to get compensation after an accident. Monetary compensation may be an option for medical bills, physical therapy bills, lost wages, lost earning capacity, related mental health problems, permanent injuries, loss of enjoyment of life, and others.
In the event of a fatality during a semi-truck collision on I-70, the surviving family members may be able to open an estate on behalf of the deceased. These survivors can choose their representation to file a claim against the trucking company for damages.
When it comes to getting a settlement from a truck accident, you might be able to file a lawsuit for damages against the driver themselves and the trucking company. You might be able to file a suit against the trucking company when truck drivers act as employees for said company.
Horn Law at Work
This case involves a commercial truck rollover on an Interstate highway in icy road conditions. Liability was established on both the driver and the owner of the company truck. A confidential 6 figure settlement was obtained on behalf of our client who was a passenger in the truck. Please note that the names and identities have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the case settlement.
Our client, Mr. Smith, was a passenger in a company-owned truck hauling a full load of boxed cargo on an interstate highway. Hours before the driver and our client had started on the delivery route, the driver had expressed concerns to his supervisor about driving the truck because the forecast called for cold and icy road conditions. The driver was told by his supervisor that he would have to drive the route or face discipline. Fearing for his job, the driver coaxed our client, who was not an employee of the company, to ride along with him as it made him feel more secure.
During the route, the delivery truck hit “black ice” and went off the highway, down an embankment, and overturned. Our client was severely injured, sustaining multiple bone fractures. As a result, our client went through multiple surgeries, rehabilitation, and months of recovery. After our client reached maximum medical improvement, our client exhibited a permanent partial disability of the whole body.
Based on the above, our law firm brought claims against the company that owned the truck on a number of legal grounds, including vicarious liability, recklessness, and negligent training, retention, supervision.
After extended litigation, the matter was settled after a court-ordered mediation. The confidential settlement, one of the larger accident-related claims against the defendant, compensated our client for medical expenses, lost income, lost earning capacity, pain, suffering, loss of heath, loss of quality of life, and permanent disability. Because our client was entitled to only one recovery under the law, the compensation was also structured to provide for our client’s future medical needs.
During the course of litigation, numerous depositions were taken of company personnel who had supervised the driver or had responsibility for truck/driver safety. In addition to establishing corporate liability for the injuries suffered by our client, we believe this case also influenced the company to improve their driver safety policies, leading to the increased protection of their drivers and others on the roadway.
If you have been in a trucking accident along I-70, Horn Law can help you figure out your legal options. Don’t let tricky insurance adjusters manipulate the situation and ruin your chances of getting the damages that you deserve. At Horn Law, our attorneys know how to handle trucking companies, insurance companies, and the law to help you receive a settlement that will cover your medical bills, potential lost wages, legal fees, and anything else that you are entitled to after a trucking accident.
Call us today at 816-795-7500 to set up a free consultation.