Orangeburg Truck Accident Lawyers
When you drive the highways of South Carolina, you’ll see most drivers leave plenty of space for commercial trucks, and for good reasons. Tractor trailers are capable of causing a shocking amount of damage in a crash and avoiding a collision should be one of your top priorities. However, no matter how carefully you drive, accidents still happen. There’s a lot that makes truck collisions more challenging than car accidents, so it’s important to connect with an attorney as soon as possible to protect yourself.
Get the assistance you deserve after a crash. Call Peake & Fowler’s Orangeburg truck accident lawyers at 803-788-4370 to set up a consultation now.
The Sad Truth About Truck Accidents in South Carolina
Data from the South Carolina Department of Public Safety paints a bleak picture of truck accidents across the state. There were nearly 2,500 truck accidents in South Carolina in 2020, making up over 2% of all traffic collisions. Just under 100 of those were fatal.
The vast majority of crashes were the fault of the non-commercial vehicle driver, but nearly 40% were caused by the commercial driver. The most at-risk group was drivers aged 25 to 34, although drivers aged 15 to 24 were a close second. This may indicate that younger drivers do not yet have the experience needed to drive safely around commercial vehicles.
Not surprisingly, crashes were most likely on weekdays. The most dangerous time of day is 12:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M., with crashes rarely occurring late at night or very early in the morning. Most accidents occurred on interstate routes and U.S. primary routes.
No matter where you drive or how much experience you have, a truck accident could happen at any time. It’s important to know how to protect yourself and what to do after a collision.
What to Do After a Truck Collision
The steps you take after a crash can have a significant impact on your health and your legal options. They’re largely the same as the steps you take after any other vehicle accident, with just a few tweaks:
- Call the police. Truck accidents generally cause far more damage than other types of vehicle crashes, and the police must be immediately notified.
- Check immediately for injuries. Check yourself and your passengers for obvious injuries. Relay those to the emergency operator so they can send an ambulance if necessary.
- Stay in your vehicle unless the operator or police tell you otherwise. Some commercial vehicles carry hazardous chemicals, and if that’s the case, you do not want to interact with them until it’s been cleared. Listen to the 911 operator and the police who report to the scene of the accident.
- Tell the police what happened and ensure that your side is reflected in the report. Tell them what happened before, during, and after the accident. Stick to the facts and what you directly observed.
- Find out where your vehicle will be taken. It’s likely that your car will need to be towed. Get the name of the tow yard so you can recover your vehicle as quickly as possible.
- Get checked out right away. Immediate medical care is always recommended after any crash, but especially after a truck collision. Head to a local facility like Orangeburg Hospital, RMC Express Care, or Jamison Express Care. Save any documentation you receive.
- Talk to a truck accident lawyer in Orangeburg. Your next call should be to a truck accident lawyer near you. There’s an enormous amount of evidence available after a collision, and time is of the essence.
Who’s Liable for Your Injuries?
A number of parties may be liable for your injuries. Your attorney will work hard to figure out what happened, who caused the accident, and who is liable for any subsequent damage. Assuming that you did not cause the accident, potentially liable parties include:
- The truck driver. If the truck driver caused the crash through their own negligence, they may very well be liable for the subsequent injuries they caused in the crash. However, they may not be legally liable—if they are directly employed by a trucking company, the liability falls to their employer. If they are owner-operators, they likely carry their own insurance and will be responsible for paying any damages.
- The trucking company. The trucking company may be liable if their employee causes the accident, encourage employees to drive when it’s unsafe to do so, or they do not perform proper background checks on their drivers.
- The company that loaded the cargo. Cargo must be loaded in a specific way to be safe for transport. Companies that load the cargo in an unbalanced way or that overload trucks may be responsible for the accidents that follow.
- The truck manufacturer. An unsafely manufactured or designed truck could cause accidents, and the fault would lie with the manufacturer.
How an Attorney Can Help
As you see, there are many parties involved with truck accident claims. That’s a lot of people who are invested in proving that they are not liable for the massive amount of damage caused by the crash.
Unfortunately, none of those parties are equally interested in helping you figure out who is to blame. While your medical bills pile up and you spend time away from work, everyone is pointing fingers without getting anywhere. As long as they aren’t held responsible, they don’t care who is.
Bringing in an attorney changes the entire scenario. Your attorney is committed to helping you and figuring out who will pay for your damages. They will track down the evidence, analyze it, and bring in expert witnesses when necessary. You just have to focus on your recovery.
Choose Peake & Fowler for Your Truck Accident Case
You can count on the team at Peake & Fowler to advocate for you as you seek compensation for your truck accident. Our goal is to help you get justice and the money you are owed, whether it comes in the form of a jury verdict or a settlement. Take the first step now by calling us at 803-788-4370 or contacting us online.