Truck accidents are more complicated than car accidents because trucks are commercial vehicles, which means there are multiple parties involved in the trucks’ operation and maintenance. This differs significantly from a car accident in which the vehicle owner is often the sole liable party.
Below, we discuss the various parties that may be held liable for a truck accident.
The Truck Driver
Most people believe the truck driver is the sole liable party for any truck accident. This is only true in certain situations.
The legal principle of “respondeat superior” (also known as “vicarious liability”) dictates that an employer is responsible for the actions of their employees. However, this principle may not apply if a truck driver acted with deliberate negligence on their own.
Examples of this include:
- The truck driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol while driving.
- The truck driver drove faster than the posted speed limit.
- The truck driver performed an illegal traffic maneuver.
The Trucking Company
The trucking company can often be held liable for a truck accident under the legal principle of respondeat superior, which dictates that an employer is responsible for the actions of their employees. In addition to hiring qualified drivers and ensuring they follow the law while driving, trucking companies must schedule regular maintenance for their vehicles.
The failure to uphold either of these responsibilities may make the trucking company liable for any accidents that result from this negligence.
The Cargo Loaders
Trucks must be loaded securely and evenly in order to prevent the cargo from shifting during transit. If the truck’s cargo loaders fail to load a truck’s bay properly, they may be held liable for any resulting cargo shift that causes an accident.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a truck accident, our Los Angeles trial attorneys are here to help. We have a strong track record of success in such claims, and we have the experience and resources needed to take on big cases.
Call Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman at (855) 948-5098 to schedule a free consultation.