For any nation, the trucking industry plays a significant role in its economy. These commercial trucks including the 18-wheelers are the largest transporter of goods. In the United States, there has been a steep rise in the number of accidents that these commercial trucks are involved in. There are thousands of accidents each year with passenger vehicles that are often fatal due to their size.
Commercial Truck Accident Statistics
In the United States in 2012, there were 3,702 fatal accidents. The number increased to 4,183 fatalities in the following years and stats shows that it is an average of 11 deaths each day in commercial truck accidents. In 2012 itself, over 100,000 people suffered injuries in commercial truck accidents which is nearly 275 people each day. It was shocking to find that 3.5% of all these fatal truck accidents in 2012 resulted from drunken driving.
The top ten state-wise breakups of fatal truck accidents are:
- Texas – 491
- California – 227
- Florida – 183
- Pennsylvania – 149
- Georgia – 139
- Ohio – 139
- North Carolina – 117
- Oklahoma – 108
- Illinois – 106
- Indiana – 100
Possibilities Of Settlement
There is always a possibility of claiming compensation from the trucking company provided you are not at fault. The course of events will differ from case to case depending on the severity of injuries and the span of therapeutic treatment. There are several other factors to consider but the most significant controlling element is the extent of the 18 wheeler accident. Since the complexity of the case and the amount involved is very high, it is always wise to hire an 18 wheeler accident attorney for claiming compensation.
Probable Amount Of Recovery
The average settlement amount of an 18 wheeler accident will depend on a couple of fiscal categories. These are:
- The cost of therapeutic treatment.
- Loss of wages and time out of work.
- Compensation for any loss of earning potential.
- Pain and suffering.
- Loss of life and companionship.
- Damage to vehicle or property
Basic Settlement Factors
There are few basic factors that influence the settlement sums and these are:
- Liability – Contributory or comparative negligence factor will determine liability. However, to claim compensation the other party must be 51% responsible for the accident.
- The severity of injuries – The settlement amount will vary according to the severity of the injuries. However, insurance companies will check and investigate your medical history for this purpose.
- Fatalities – This can lead to a wrongful death claim in case of fatalities though different states may have different laws about wrongful death claims.
- Policies – Amount will also vary according to the insurance coverage which is normally $1 million of obligation.
A Fair Settlement Amount
Though money is not enough for loss of limb and life, you can surely get a fair claim in such accident cases. The settlement amount will involve physical medical bills and other emotional intangible losses due to the pain and suffering. Settlements can often range from hundreds of thousands of dollars to even tens of millions of dollars, depending on the circumstances, state laws and how your attorney approaches with the claim.