Overweight and overloaded trucks pose a great safety risk to everyone on the road. At Lusk, Drasites & Tolisano, our truck accident lawyers understand the harm that people in the Fort Myers area and elsewhere in Southwest Florida can suffer when these vehicles are improperly loaded. We work hard to seek the compensation that victims deserve for their harm.Holding Truck Drivers and Companies Accountable for Negligently Overloading Vehicles
Both state and federal regulations govern the amount of weight that a commercial vehicle is permitted to carry. Trucks have a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR). This GVWR is calculated by rating several different parts of the truck, including the axles, suspension, frame, powertrain, and brakes. Trucks are not permitted to carry more weight than what the GVWR allows.
If a truck is overweight, the driver can have a harder time controlling the vehicle because of its increased downhill speed, decreased speed driving uphill, longer braking distance than other trucks, and higher center of gravity, which makes overloaded trucks more likely to to roll over and crash.
If a truck is overweight or overloaded and a crash occurs, the victim can try to demonstrate that the driver or company violated safety standards. This creates a presumption of negligence. It is important to note that both truck drivers and trucking companies can be liable for wrecks resulting from negligence.
If you or someone you know has been harmed due to an overweight or overloaded truck, you may be able to seek compensation from the at-fault truck driver as well as the driver’s employer. In order to prevail on a negligence claim, the victim must establish the following elements:
- The victim was owed a duty of care by the defendant;
- The defendant breached this duty;
- The defendant’s breach caused or substantially contributed to the accident; and
- The victim suffered quantifiable damages as a result.
Victims of overweight and overloaded truck accidents may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, loss of income and benefits, pain and suffering, emotional distress, property damage, and more. The exact amount of compensation will vary based on the details of the case. In some cases, victims are awarded a lump-sum amount of money, while in other cases the compensation is given to the victim in installments over a certain period of time.
Personal injury claims must be filed within a certain time frame, known as the statute of limitations. Under Florida law, an injury claim must be filed within four years from the date of an accident. If you have tragically lost a loved one due to someone else’s negligence, wrongful death claims have a two-year statute of limitations.Protect Your Rights after a Truck Accident by Enlisting a Fort Myers Lawyer
At Lusk, Drasites & Tolisano, our experienced injury attorneys can help Fort Myers residents and others who have been harmed by negligent commercial drivers and trucking companies. We can meticulously gather the facts of your case, assess your legal options, and assert your rights in settlement negotiations and at trial. We also represent accident victims in Naples, Lehigh Acres, Sarasota, and other communities in Collier and Lee Counties. To set up a free consultation, call us toll-free at (800) 283-7442 or contact us through our online form today.