Truck Accidents

Omaha Law Firm Fighting For the Rights of the Injured

Getting into a motor vehicle accident can have very serious consequences. When an accident involves a truck weighing tens of thousands of pounds, the impact of the crash can be greater - more severe damage and often more serious injuries. The Omaha truck accident attorneys at Ausman Law Firm, P.C., L.L.O. protect the rights of the injured and help them recover financial compensation.

Trucks are everywhere in Nebraska and Iowa. There are 18-wheelers, tanker trucks, delivery trucks, dump trucks, garbage trucks and many others on highways, city streets and back roads. When truck drivers and trucking companies act responsibly and follow the law, we barely notice them on the road.

But when a truck driver or a trucking company is negligent, a commercial truck accident involving a car or another smaller vehicle can be devastating. A fully loaded tractor-trailer can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds. When such large vehicles crash into passenger cars at high speed, the force of impact can be tremendous.

A truck accident involving a big rig can happen many different ways. But any type of truck accident can cause serious and sometimes fatal injuries.

How did your truck accident happen?

Injuries caused by truck accidents are typically much more serious than those caused by car accidents. Some victims suffer broken bones, sprained muscles or torn ligaments. Others may suffer burns. More severe injuries include traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries. Truck accident injuries may take months of years to recover from. Other injuries are permanent or even fatal.

A truck accident usually happens because of negligence. Our firm has years of experience handling complex truck accident cases. We know how to investigate accidents and hold negligent drivers accountable.

Why did your truck accident happen?

Trucking companies may bear some responsibility for your accident. For example, they may have been negligent when hiring a driver, by failing to properly maintain or repair trucks or not giving a driver a realistic schedule. We investigate trucking companies and will pursue a claim against them, if negligence is found.

Maximizing Your Compensation

It is typical for a truck driver and trucking company to deny any responsibility for your accident. The insurance company may make a lowball settlement offer, hoping you will just take the money and go away. Don't fall for it.

First offers usually don't come close to covering the true cost of the damages you suffered. You have the right to seek damages for past and future medical expenses related to your injury, lost wages if you can't work, property damage, disability, emotional distress and pain and suffering.

We determine the real cost of your accident. Then we pursue the maximum compensation you deserve for your crash. We build a strong case that can't be ignored. We pursue evidence proving negligence resulted in your injuries. Many times, we negotiate a favorable settlement with the insurance company once they see we have all the facts. But if they won't pay you the compensation you deserve, we will fight them in court. We have successfully litigated many cases and we're proud of our victories on behalf of our clients.

If you've been injured in a truck accident, find out how an attorney can help. You need Ausman Law Firm, P.C., L.L.O. Contact us today for your free consultation. There's no obligation. We'll listen to the details of your accident and answer any questions you have. Then we'll explain all your legal options so you can make an informed decision about what to do next.

"How did your truck accident happen?"

Jackknife

In this type of accident, the drive-axle brakes of a tractor-trailer lock up, causing the trailer to skid. The trailer swings out from the cab at an angle that resembles a jackknife. These accidents are extremely dangerous, especially on the highway. The driver is unable to bring the tractor-trailer to a stop. And when the trailer swings out, it can crash into other vehicles.

Proving negligence in a jackknifing truck accident can be difficult. We examine every piece of evidence and conduct a thorough investigation. Our attorneys look for signs that the driver was speeding or distracted. We also check to see if the driver received proper training.

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Truck Rollover

This type of accident is fairly common in Nebraska and Iowa. The wheels of the truck lift up off the road, and the truck rolls over onto its side-or upside-down. There are different causes of rollover accidents, including traveling at high speed, sudden changes in steering, improperly loaded cargo and hitting an obstacle on the road. Jackknifing trucks can also roll over.

Any cars that the truck crashes into can be severely damaged, and the people inside them can suffer serious injuries. When a driver or a trucking company is negligent, an experienced attorney can help you recover financial compensation.

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Underride

These accidents happen after a rear-end collision, usually involving a tractor-trailer and a car. The car is behind the tractor-trailer, which brakes suddenly. The driver of the car is unable to stop in time and crashes into the rear of the tractor-trailer. The car then slides underneath the tractor-trailer, due to the force of impact and difference in size.

The driver and passengers of the car in these accidents can be seriously hurt. People involved in underride accidents can suffer a traumatic brain injury or spinal cord injury. More minor injuries can include broken bones and muscle or nerve damage. Injuries in these accidents can also be fatal.

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Truck Rear-Ended Car

When a truck weighing as much as 80,000 pounds crashes into the rear end of a car, the results can be devastating. This type of accident usually happens because a truck is following behind a car too closely. A large tractor-trailer traveling at high speed needs a lot of distance to come to complete stop. So when a car brakes suddenly, the truck is unable to stop in time to prevent a collision.

These accidents could easily have been prevented if the truck driver used more care on the road. But when truck drivers speed to try to meet a deadline, or don't pay attention, a crash can occur and people get hurt.

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Wide Turn

Tractor-trailers are much larger and much heavier than passenger cars. So when a truck needs to make a turn, the driver needs to make a very wide turn. This turn should be done slowly and with extra care, as the truck won't have a lot of space to work with and may briefly enter another lane of traffic.

When a truck driver is negligent and makes the turn too fast, or without carefully checking the road, the truck can crash into a car. The impact of the crash can cause tremendous damage and serious injuries. We investigate the accident and help victims recover compensation.

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Tire Blowout

A truck is traveling down the highway at 65 miles an hour. Suddenly, a tire on the truck blows out. The driver struggles to regain control. But it's often impossible to avoid an accident. If there is heavy traffic on the highway, it is likely that the truck will hit several cars before coming to a complete stop. It is also likely there will be many people with serious injuries.

Federal law requires truck drivers and trucking companies to follow maintenance schedules and regular inspections of tires. In some cases, the manufacturer may have been responsible for supplying defective tires. Our investigation will find the negligent party and seek to recover financial compensation.

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Lost Load

There are procedures that must be followed when loading trucks, in order to keep the load balanced and secure. When these procedures are not followed, cargo can come loose while the truck is in motion. This puts more weight on one side of the truck and makes it harder for the driver to maintain control. Cargo can also spill out onto the road and smash onto oncoming cars.

Our firm investigates truck accidents to look for evidence of negligence. We will examine all records and talk to witnesses. If we find that the cargo was not properly loaded, we will work to prove that negligence led to your injuries.

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"Why did your truck accident happen?"

Texting Trucker

It is against federal law for truckers to text while driving. Unfortunately, some drivers are either unaware of these laws or choose not follow them. A distracted driver is a dangerous driver, because texting takes your eyes off of the road. A couple of seconds is plenty of time to get into an accident. And when the vehicle they are driving weighs tens of thousands of pounds, the damage can be severe and the injuries very serious.

Our lawyers look for evidence that the driver of the truck that hit you was texting before your crash. We will seek phone records and talk to witnesses of the crash. We are dedicated to helping you recover maximum compensation for your injuries.

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Speeding Truck

Truckers are usually on a deadline to deliver their cargo. Because of this, some push the speed limit in an attempt to make up some time. But the effects of this can be disastrous. A speeding truck is harder to bring to a complete stop, greatly increasing the risk of an accident that leaves people seriously hurt.

Sometimes, an investigating officer will record the estimated speed of the truck. We will also seek to gain access to the truck's black box data to find out how fast the truck was going just before the crash. When we can prove the truck was speeding, we can establish negligence.

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Truck Maintenance Issue

Federal regulations require trucks to be regularly maintained, serviced and inspected. When trucking companies fail to meet this responsibility, something can go wrong on the road. Brakes can fail, or a tire can blow out. The driver struggles to regain control of the truck, and the result is a serious accident. People involved in the accident can suffer life-changing or fatal injuries.

A trucking company may choose to neglect regular maintenance or needed repairs to save money. We will seek company records to learn if the truck was properly maintained and if there were any problems noted that weren't fixed. We will also look for evidence that the driver was aware of any problems before the crash.

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Drunk or Drugged Trucker

It is dangerous to operate any motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. It is especially dangerous if that vehicle is a large tractor-trailer. Drivers under the influence have slow reaction times and make poor decisions. This can easily lead to a crash that has devastating consequences.

We review police reports to see if the officer suspected drug or alcohol use by the driver and if any testing was conducted. We also talk to witnesses who may have seen the driver using alcohol or other drugs before the crash. When we can establish negligence, we can maximize your compensation.

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Fatigued Truck Driver

Truck drivers spend long hours on the road to get their cargo to its destination. Federal regulations limit the number of hours they can drive per day and per week, because a fatigued driver is a dangerous one. Fatigue slows reaction times and impairs judgment. A fatigued driver can easily cause an accident that leaves people with serious injuries.

Sometimes drivers ignore regulations and spend extra hours on the road to try to make a deadline. We review logbooks and black box data to determine if drivers were following hours of service rules. In some cases, trucking companies may also be held responsible if they gave drivers deadlines that were not realistic.

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Improper Loading

There are federal regulations that drivers and trucking companies must follow when loading cargo. All cargo must be properly balanced and secured. If these regulations are not followed, cargo can come loose during transit. This can put too much weight on one side of the truck, making it hard for the driver to control. Or cargo can come loose from a flatbed trailer and crash into oncoming cars.

The result of an improperly loaded truck can be an accident that leaves people seriously injured. Our firm conducts a thorough investigation of your accident. We review all documents to determine if the cargo was loaded properly. When regulations weren't followed, we can establish negligence and fight to get you maximum compensation.

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Inexperienced Driver

Not everyone is qualified to drive a big rig. It takes many of hours of training and practice to become qualified. There are also federal and state requirements that a driver must meet. A driver who is not experienced and does not have the right qualifications is a danger on the road and an accident waiting to happen.

If you've been hurt in a truck accident, we will check to see if the driver was qualified to be behind the wheel. Trucking companies can also be held responsible if they did not check the background and qualifications of the driver during the hiring process.

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Ausman Law Firm

9850 Nicholas St., Suite 305
Omaha, NE 68114
Phone: (402) 933-8140
Fax: (402) 913-3471