From the Atlantic to the Appalachians, the Chesapeake Bay to the buzzing city of Baltimore, Maryland has one of the most unique landscapes in America. Maryland also has more than ten interstate highways that are major east coast trucking routes. While the American economy is largely dependent on commercial trucking, the increase of large trucks on Maryland’s roadways has also increased the number of truck accidents.
If you or your loved one were harmed in a Maryland truck accident, Regan Zambri Long is here to help. Our seasoned personal injury lawyers will guide you through the claims process and secure the compensation you deserve.
The Regan Zambri Long Maryland truck accident lawyers have ample financial resources at their disposal. This means your lawyer has the financial backing to take on large trucking companies and their insurance providers. You can rest assured we will see your case through until the very end. We prepare every case as if it were going to trial, so if we cannot come to an agreement on a fair settlement during negotiations, we will take the negligent parties to court.
At Regan Zambri Long, our truck accident attorneys have litigated truck accident claims involving the following types of trucks:
While each of these vehicles serve a great purpose in Maryland, they can be deadly to other drivers on the road. The types of accidents these vehicles can cause are:
These types of accidents happen when the trailer of the truck rolls over, either from shifting cargo or from the truck driver trying to maneuver a turn or curve too quickly. When rollover accidents happen, the trailer of the truck can roll onto the vehicle driving beside it or it can create a sudden hazard in the road from loose cargo or the rolled over trailer itself.
Head-on truck collisions take place when the commercial truck and another vehicle collide while traveling in opposite directions. These accidents are frequently fatal, especially for the passengers in the passenger vehicle.
These types of crashes occur when the commercial truck crashes into the back of a passenger vehicle. Semi-trucks, 18-wheelers, and tractor-trailers can weigh up to 80,000 pounds while carrying cargo. The weight of the truck makes it extremely difficult for the driver to stop the vehicle quickly. If the truck is following too closely behind a passenger vehicle and there is a sudden stop, a rear-end accident is likely to occur.
Driving in a truck’s blind spot is one of the most dangerous things a car driver can do. If the truck driver doesn’t see you, they can easily overtake your vehicle when changing lanes or merging. The safest rule of thumb to follow when driving alongside commercial trucks is: if you can’t see the driver in the truck’s side view mirror, then the truck driver cannot see you. Do not travel alongside a truck – speed up or slow down to get away from the vehicle and then create as much space as possible.
Jackknife accidents are extremely dangerous because they have potential to cause a multi car accident. These crashes occur when the truck driver tries to stop the truck too quickly. The trailer of the truck swings out at a 90-degree angle so that it is perpendicular to the truck, possibly hitting multiple vehicles along the way.
Underride accidents are when a passenger vehicle slides underneath the trailer of a tractor-trailer, often causing fatal injuries for the occupants in the car. Legislators are trying to push underride guard protection laws to decrease the number of these deadly accidents.
According to the Federal Carrier Motor Safety Administration, the 7 most common causes of truck accidents are:
Mechanical failure: This is the number one cause of truck accidents in Maryland and across the United States, making up 29% of truck crashes. Truck companies have the responsibility to make sure their trucks are in top condition before sending them on the road. However, many companies cut corners to save money and forego maintenance and service checks. Because of their negligence, many truck accidents are caused by preventable mechanical problems like tire blowouts and brake defects.
Reckless driving/speeding: Irresponsible driving, like speeding, tailgating, failing to signal, or making unsafe turns or lane changes can cause a devastating truck accident. Truck drivers must understand the responsibility they have to other drivers on the road. Their negligence can ruin the lives of many others.
Unfamiliar with roadway: Driver mistakes on unfamiliar roads make up 22% of truck accidents. If a truck driver is navigating I-95, I-295, or the Baltimore Beltway and does not expect a harsh turn or uneven roads, he or she may not be able to correct the truck in time and cause an accident.
Alcohol/Drug Use: Driving while drunk or high is well-known to be reckless and dangerous. This is especially true when you are driving a vehicle that outweighs other cars on the road by 23 times. The truck driver is accountable for his or her decisions prior to getting behind the wheel. However, the truck company is also liable for their truck driver’s behavior on the road. Truck companies must do thorough background checks, including past moving violations and criminal records, for all new employees. If a driver had a history of driving while impaired, the truck company should not allow the driver on the road.
Drowsy driving is unfortunately common among most drivers today. However, truck drivers are often pressured by their companies to travel for long periods of time without proper rest. They are more likely than any other driver on the road to drive while fatigued. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, being awake for more than 18 hours is equivalent to having a blood alcohol content of 0.05%. Being awake for more than 24 hours is equivalent to having a blood alcohol content of 0.10%, which is higher than the legal limit.
Distracted driving: Drivers across Maryland and the United States have a major problem with distracted driving. It is common for drivers to check text messages, emails, and talk on the phone while their sole focus should be on the road. When truck drivers take their eyes off the road or even just let their minds wander, it can cause a life-changing accident for another driver.
Cargo shifts: There is a maximum limit to the amount of cargo a truck can haul per trip. Sometimes, the cargo loaders overload the truck, making the load overweight. When this happens, it can destabilize the truck making it difficult for the truck driver to control the vehicle.
Other causes of truck accidents can include:
Motor vehicle accidents of any kind can cause serious harm to the drivers and passengers involved. However, when a truck collides with a car, the passengers in the car are 29 times more likely to be killed than the truck driver. The weight of the truck, especially when carrying cargo, makes it more difficult to stop. Therefore, even at low speeds, the force of the truck will make a greater impact than the force of a regular passenger vehicle.
The occupants of the car have a greater chance of sustaining catastrophic injuries, including:
The cost of living with a catastrophic injury following a truck accident can be upwards of $3-5 million dollars for an individual. Very few of us think to financially prepare for such an unexpected event so the initial medical expenses alone can send an individual or family into extreme financial distress.
This is why it is so important to have a Regan Zambri Long Maryland truck accident attorney by your side. It is our mission to make sure you and your family do not have to pay for someone else’s negligence. Coping with recovery and finding a new normal following a truck accident is enough for you to deal with – leave the rest to us. We will fiercely fight to protect your rights and secure the maximum amount of compensation to cover all your medical bills and property damage expenses from the truck accident.
Truck drivers and trucking companies have to follow local, state, and federal laws. While these laws help protect drivers on the road, it also makes the claims process complicated. Our Maryland truck accident attorneys at Regan Zambri Long are experts in Maryland trucking laws, as well as federal trucking laws. We will use our knowledge to build a rock solid case that will secure the proper amount of compensation for you and your loved ones.
We offer free consultations with seasoned truck accident lawyers to discuss your case and all legal options. During your consultation, you’ll hear our step-by-step process on how we plan to win your case:
The first thing we will determine is who is at fault for the truck accident. It is important to note: Maryland is one of the few jurisdictions that still practices contributory negligence law. Contributory negligence states that if you are found to be at all responsible for a portion of the accident – even 1% – then you will not be able to recover damages. Our truck crash lawyer will investigate every aspect of the accident to determine the party or parties at fault, which could include:
After we discover who is liable for your accident, we will start our investigation. We will recover all evidence, including the police report, the driver logs, truck recorder data, maintenance logs, and load manifests. We will also bring in accident reconstructionists to show how the accident occurred because of the other party’s negligence.
Insurance companies are notorious for lowballing settlements. Insurance adjusters are notorious for taking advantage of truck accident victims who don’t have knowledge of the different trucking industry and regulations. While you focus on your recovery, our truck accident attorneys will handle all the correspondence with the insurance companies and the truck company.
After building a case that will secure a favorable settlement or verdict, we will take the evidence collected to a judge or jury. We will aggressively negotiate to recover the following damages:
A: The trucking industry in Maryland is regulated by the Maryland Department of Transportation, as well as the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Truck drivers and companies must comply with laws like:
A: The statute of limitations for truck accident claims in Maryland is three years from the date of the accident. While that may seem like a long time, it doesn’t take long for medical bills to start piling up. The claims process can be lengthy, especially when you are going up against large trucking companies and their insurance providers. The best thing you can do is contact a Regan Zambri Long truck accident attorney and get the claims process started right away.
A: There were 785 major vehicle crashes in 2017 alone. Of those accidents, 49 (or 6.2%) involved large trucks. While truck accidents make up a small percentage of the number of accidents in the country, they account for 10% of all crash fatalities. If you or your loved one are part of these statistics, do not hesitate to reach out. Call today for a free consultation with one of the nation’s leading Maryland truck accident lawyers.