Truck Accident Attorneys in Rapid City
Get Help After a Tractor-Trailer Accident
Any accident on the road can have serious (or even catastrophic) consequences, but tractor-trailers, semis, and other large commercial vehicles pose an especially great risk: the sheer size of these types of vehicles means that small mistakes or carelessness by the truck driver or operator can easily lead to serious injury or death. The danger is compounded when the truck is carrying hazardous cargo such as fuel or gas that can ignite in the event of a crash.
Because of the greater threat posed by large trucks and other commercial vehicles, the owners and/or operators of these vehicles are required to follow additional and more stringent safety regulations than the drivers of personal vehicles. This means that in the event of a truck accident, the legal process for holding the at-fault party accountable is different and more complicated than the process after an accident involving a small personal car. For instance, truck drivers and operators of commercial vehicles typically carry a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL); the higher standards that come with a CDL often mean that the actions (or inactions) of individuals associated with the truck–that may have taken place long before the collision itself—are important when proving negligence.
Who May Be Liable for Your Truck Accident?
Like any motor vehicle collision, tractor-trailer accidents are often the fault of negligent drivers. However, driver negligence in the moments leading up to the collision is not the only reason that truck crashes happen. Truck driving operations rely on a large network of mechanics, other employees, and management personnel to function. Negligence by these other individuals—such as management (i) failing to do background checks and hire qualified drivers, (ii) failing to properly train and supervise drivers, and (iii) failing to properly maintain their trucks and equipment—can often set the stage for an accident.
Although each case is unique, the following individuals could potentially be at fault after an accident:
- The truck driver (if he/she was speeding, ignoring traffic signals, under the influence of alcohol or drugs, impaired due to fatigue, or otherwise driving recklessly)
- The trucking company (if it employed the driver who caused the accident, or if it was negligent in the hiring or training the driver)
- The mechanic (if he/she failed to properly repair or maintain the vehicle and such improper repairs or maintenance was a cause of the wreck)
- The individual that loaded the truck (if he/she failed to load it properly and/or failed to property secure the load)
- The vehicle manufacturer (if the vehicle—or a component of the vehicle—was defective and such defect was a cause of the collision)
We will evaluate the details of your case to determine who may be liable for your injuries and damages. Contact us to discuss your situation.
Knowledge & Experience in Personal Injury Law & Commercial Vehicle Operation
At Thomas Braun Bernard & Burke, LLP we are committed to helping injury victims obtain the compensation needed to make them whole. We understand that no amount of money can restore one’s health or life, but we work hard to help our clients hold negligent or careless parties accountable under the law.
Attorney John W. Burke, who handles the majority of our personal injury cases, grew up riding in and working around 18-wheelers (because his father has been a truck driver his entire life). John drove a truck while in college and still possesses a CDL. This truck-driving background gives him a significant advantage when working on accidents involving 18-wheelers. An accident involving an 18-wheeler is not the same as a typical car accident and must be approached differently. Given his experience, John has the insight to properly handle a case involving an 18-wheeler, which increases the chances of holding the responsible party accountable and getting clients the compensation needed to make them whole.
Seek Justice & Compensation After a Truck Accident
At Thomas Braun Bernard & Burke, LLP our lawyers typically represent personal injury and wrongful death clients on a contingency basis. This means that if we do not obtain compensation for your injury, we do not charge you a fee. We have been very successful in representing people injured or killed due to the negligence of others.
To learn more about how our firm can help you after an accident involving a commercial vehicle, schedule a free initial consultation by calling us at (605) 349-2221 or contacting us online. From our office in Rapid City, we serve clients throughout South Dakota, Wyoming, Minnesota, and Nebraska..