Who is Responsible for Tractor Trailer Accidents?

by | Nov 2, 2015 | Truck Accidents | 0 comments

If you are involved in a tractor trailer accident and need to sort through the potential liabilities, Michigan accident attorney Chris Trainor might be able to help.

First, you must ask yourself, is the owner/employer of the tractor trailer legally responsible for the accident? After all, his vehicle was the first to hit another, and start the chain of events leading to three damages vehicles. This issue, typical of highway truck collisions, is far more complex than may first appear.

The analysis of liability must start with a full account of the accident, including full identification of the three drivers, statements from each of the drivers, and statements from any witnesses to the accident.

Here are the basic facts to be ascertained:

  • First, was the tractor trailer proceeding at reasonable speed considering the road conditions at the time the accident occurred? Speed estimates from each of the three drivers will be needed, along with the observations of any witnesses. If speed was excessive at the time of the collision, the driver who initiated the accident will probably be held liable. Note that this is probably a matter for expert opinion testimony.
  • Second, were there any extenuating circumstances which increased the risk of a truck collision? It is critical to note that in some situations, driving at any speed may be unsafe. Again, expert testimony may be critical on this issue.
  • Were one or more police reports filed? Copies of each of them should be obtained. It is important to interview the author of each such report.
  • Closely related and of great importance, were any citations issued in connection with the accident? What code violations were asserted in each citation? Did any citation claim that any driver was operating under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the date and time of the collision?
  • What insurance was in place on each vehicle, and what was the name of the insured?
  • Who was the legal owner of each vehicle? The legal owner of each truck may bear some responsibility for the mishap. For example, the owner may bear responsibility for defective or improper maintenance of its equipment. Liability may exist even if a third party driver was engaged to drive.
  • Evidence of reasonable steps taken by the legal owner to assure that its drivers were properly trained and licensed is often of great importance in the analysis of employer liability. If the owner lacks a record of driver safety training, this may be indicative of knowing negligent operation.

In sum, every accident raises its own unique issues; employer liability for each such situation will turn heavily on its facts. Get the help you need from a knowledgeable Michigan accident attorney in order to maximize your chances for success in a personal injury lawsuit. Call the law offices of Chris Trainor today to schedule a free initial consultation.

Christopher Trainor and Associates Featured on WXYZ

Recently Christopher Trainor and Associates was featured on WXYZ 7 Action News in Detroit regarding a client's case against the Detroit Police Department in which the client was wrongly arrested and held in jail. The full article and can be found on the WXYZ website.

St Joseph, MI – Injuries Result from Wreck on I-94 near Martin Luther King Dr

St Joseph, MI (March 25, 2022) - A major car crash happened on an interstate in St Joseph on the afternoon of March 20. At approximately 5:10 p.m., an unspecified number of vehicles collided on Interstate 94. Reports show the accident happened on I-94 near Martin...

Zeeland, MI – Auto Accident on Fairview Rd at Washington Ave Ends in Injuries

Zeeland, MI (March 25, 2022) - An auto accident happened on the morning of March 25 in Zeeland that resulted in injuries. The wreck occurred shortly after 8:00 a.m., according to reports.  Sources say the collision took place on Fairview Road near Washington...

Paw Paw, MI – Major Car Crash on M-43 between 37th & 40th St

Paw Paw, MI (March 25, 2022) - A motor vehicle accident occurred in Paw Paw on the morning of March 23 that required an emergency response. The incident was reported to authorities in the area at around 12:21 p.m. Various responders were observed at the scene of the...

Romulus, MI – Motor Vehicle Collision Causes Injuries on I-94 near Vining Rd

Romulus, MI (March 25, 2022) - At least one person was hurt in a crash reported in Romulus on March 25. At approximately 12:55 p.m., police were dispatched to the scene of the wreck located on Interstate 94.  Responders including paramedics, fire crews, and...

Holland, MI – Injury Accident on Waverly Rd at 48th St Requires EMT Dispatch

Holland, MI (March 25, 2022) - On the morning of March 25, at approximately 6:55 a.m., a car accident in Holland required an emergency dispatch.  Reports indicate that a vehicle collided with a pole near 48th Street on Waverly Road.  To assist the injured...

Jackson, MI – Serious Car Accident on M-106 near Deweese Rd and Hawkins Rd

Jackson, MI (March 25, 2022) - Police officers in Jackson were dispatched to the scene of a major car crash on Friday, March 25. According to local officials, the collision happened at approximately 4:00 p.m. on M-106. While emergency personnel rendered aid to those...

Detroit, MI – Police Dispatched to Crash Scene on I-96 near Davison St

Detroit, MI (March 25, 2022) - On March 25, at least one person was injured in a car accident in Detroit. The wreck was reported to officials in the area at approximately 10:50 p.m. According to information from reports, the accident occurred on I-96 near Davison...

Wyoming, MI – Major Accident on 28th St near Clyde Park Ave

Wyoming, MI (March 24, 2022) - Highway patrol officers and first responders were called to the scene of a vehicle collision on March 24 on 28th Street in Wyoming. Reports show that an unspecified number of vehicles collided in the area, resulting in the injury of at...

St Clair, MI – Siblings Killed in Wreck on Kinney Rd near Burt Rd

St Clair, MI (March 24, 2022) - A brother and sister were killed in a two-car crash on Thursday, March 24 in Riley Township. The incident was reported north of Interstate 69 on Kinney Road near Burt Road.  Three people were also hospitalized with injuries,...