City and private trash collection or waste management companies provide an important service. Without trash pickup, cities throughout Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia would smell bad as garbage piled up. But problems occur when garbage truck drivers cause accidents by not paying attention, driving recklessly, hitting other vehicles, or crashing into pedestrians or cyclists.
If you or a loved one were injured in a garbage truck accident, or if a family member was killed, contact the experienced truck accident attorneys of Regan Zambri Long for a free assessment of your case. Call us at (202) 960-4596, we will be happy to answer your questions and discuss your legal options.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 5,005 people were killed in 2019 in crashes involving large trucks. Seventy-one percent of those killed were in other, smaller vehicles involved in the crash. Another 11% were pedestrians or cyclists. Nearly 159,000 more people were injured in accidents with large trucks. Unfortunately, these numbers don’t include accidents that occurred on private property, such as in a driveway, where some trash truck accidents occur. This means the number of people injured or killed is even higher than the NHTSA reports.
When you are injured in a crash with a garbage truck, you may be able to receive money for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost time at work, and other kinds of compensation. The person responsible for the accident may be required to compensate you for your injuries. That could be the driver of the garbage truck, the garbage collection company, or both. A driver who drives negligently or recklessly can be held responsible for the accident. If a crash happened because of negligent maintenance or repair, the repair person and their company may also be held responsible for the accident and your damages.
Even when you may be entitled to compensation, it can be difficult to get the money you deserve. Trash truck accident cases are complicated. You must prove that the driver was at fault and you did nothing wrong. You will need to show that your injuries and damages to your car or property were caused by the crash. Many garbage collection companies rely upon their insurance companies and lawyers to aggressively negotiate a settlement. This may mean that the insurance company will make a settlement offer too low to cover your damages, injuries, lost time at work, and the like. If no settlement payment is offered, or if a payment too low to cover your medical bills and related expenses is offered, the experienced attorneys at Regan Zambri Long can help you get the compensation you deserve.
Because garbage trucks are so much bigger and heavier than other motor vehicles, the injuries and damages they cause in a crash can be serious. Garbage trucks also make frequent stops, turns, and back out of driveways and alleyways as they move about the city to collect trash. The operation of a garbage truck in violation of traffic and safety rules combined with the size of the truck means that you will probably suffer serious injuries and significant damages to your vehicle if you are in an accident with a garbage truck. If you are a pedestrian or a motorcyclist, your risk of suffering a fatal injury is very high.
Unfortunately, many people are killed in accidents with large trucks. In Virginia, over 9% of large trucks on the road were involved in a fatal crash in 2019. In Maryland, nearly 8% of large trucks caused a fatal accident. If your family member was killed in a trash truck accident, the skilled lawyers of Regan Zambri Long can help you file a wrongful death claim against the driver or company. Call us today at (202) 960-4596 to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation.
If the trash truck is owned and operated by a private garbage collection company, you file your claim against the company and the driver of the truck. Filing a claim means that you start a lawsuit in court. You as the injured party will be the plaintiff and the company and driver will be defendants. Under D.C. law and Maryland law, you must file your claim in court within three years of the accident. If you do not, you will not be able to pursue your claim and will no longer be entitled to receive compensation for your injuries or damages. In Virginia, you have even less time: two years from the date of the accident. This timeframe for filing your claim is called the statute of limitations.
When an accident is caused by the garbage truck driver’s negligent or reckless driving, your claim will also be filed against the driver. If the accident was caused by a malfunction of the truck, you may have a claim against the manufacturer or the person who negligently repaired or maintained the vehicle.
If the garbage truck is a public works truck owned and operated by D.C., the claim must be filed against the District of Columbia in a separate municipal process that lets the district know you intend to start a lawsuit against D.C., and possibly the truck driver. If the claim will be filed against D.C., there are very short periods of time for submitting paperwork. You must submit a Notice of Claim letter within six months of the accident. The Notice of Claim letter must include very specific information. If any of the information is not included or is incomplete, your claim can be denied.
At Regan Zambri Long, we help victims navigate the complexities of a legal claim following a large truck crash. We have decades of experience in large truck accident claims in Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia. In one case involving a dump truck accident that killed a 35-year-old carpenter, we recovered a settlement of $15.2 million for the family in their wrongful death claim.
If you pursue a claim in court against the garbage truck driver or garbage collection company, it will be considered a personal injury lawsuit. If you pursue a claim on behalf of your family member who was killed in a garbage truck crash, it will be a wrongful death lawsuit. Both provide “full and fair compensation” for losses suffered as a result of the crash. This includes compensation for medical expenses, medical treatments, required medical devices, at-home care, physical therapy, lost time at work and lost wages, future lost wages if you remain unable to work, loss of future earning potential if your loved one died, physical pain and suffering, and emotional distress.
It depends on who owns the truck. If garbage is collected by the city, the truck may be owned by the municipality and the driver may be a municipal employee. If the truck is owned by the District of Columbia or a city in Maryland or Virginia, you will need to file a claim against the city. This will provide the municipality with notice that you intend to pursue them for compensation for your damages.
Sometimes, even though garbage is collected by the city, they pay a private company to handle garbage collection services. In this case, the city is not the party who owns or operates the trucks. You can file a lawsuit in court against the company and the driver without going through the notice process required if the truck were owned by the city.
If a trash truck is owned and operated by the state, a legal rule called sovereign immunity could hinder your right to collect. Because of sovereign immunity, states cannot be sued for many kinds of wrongs. There are exceptions to this rule. An experienced D.C. truck accident lawyer can help you navigate through the exceptions and pursue the right party for the compensation you deserve.
The legal team at Regan Zambri Long is made up of experienced lawyers with over 100 years of collective experience representing injured clients in litigation and settlement in DC, Virginia, and Maryland. We became lawyers to provide justice for those who are impacted by negligent and reckless drivers and companies. We advocate aggressively to ensure our clients receive the compensation they deserve to cover their expenses, costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering. We are highly respected in the DC area among lawyers, judges, medical establishments, and insurance companies for our ethical and thorough representation of our clients. This earned respect in the DC legal community enables us to negotiate and advocate successfully for our clients.
The lawyers of Regan Zambri Long have extensive negotiation and trial experience handling cases of truck accidents. We are able to advise our clients effectively based upon our years of experience in circumstances that may be similar to yours. We are also a dedicated group of trial lawyers. We provide clients with vigorous representation even when the circumstances are unique. Our lawyers represent accident sufferers with compassion. We are passionate about helping victims and their families put their lives back together and move forward in the best way possible after an accident.
The personal injury lawyers of Regan Zambri Long are also among the top lawyers in the country, with many awards. The recognition our lawyers have received include:
If you are suffering as a result of a garbage truck crash, you may have mounting medical bills and costs as well as lost wages as you recover and are unable to work, or unable to work at your full pre-accident capacity. Plus, you may need to rent a car while your car is repaired, or you may need funds to buy another car. Because we know how challenging it can be after a garbage truck accident, we work on a contingency fee arrangement. This means no attorney fees are charged to you unless we recover money on your behalf as a verdict in court or a settlement.
If you were injured in a garbage truck accident, the experienced lawyers of Regan Zambri Long can give you information about whether you may be entitled to receive compensation for your injuries. If your family member was killed in a garbage truck crash, we will discuss your rights to compensation for the loss of your loved one. We will help you understand your legal rights during a free, no-obligation consultation.
If we take on your case, we will conduct a complete investigation of the accident, contact witnesses, and hire expert witnesses if necessary to testify about your injuries and the negligence or recklessness of the driver or owner of the trash truck. We will also estimate the compensation you may have a legal right to receive. Our lawyers negotiate with insurance companies and the at-fault parties to reach a settlement that compensates you. And we fight for your rights in court at trial.
Call Regan Zambri Long at (202) 960-4596 or contact us using our online form to receive a free consultation to discuss your situation and legal options.