Pennsylvania Truck Accident Attorneys
Serving Our Community for Over 130 Years
Accidents between passenger cars and tractor-trailer trucks on Pennsylvania roads and highways can be catastrophic events, resulting in severe injuries and property loss. Truck accidents result from any number of factors, including driver distraction, drowsy driving, and sometimes even unethical or negligent practices by the trucking company.
If you are driving a smaller automobile, your life is at risk if you are in an accident with a large truck, whether it’s a tanker truck, 18-wheeler, delivery van, or any other large commercial vehicle. The average 18-wheeler can weigh approximately 30 times more than the average passenger vehicle.
How Are Truck Accidents Different from Car Accidents?
Truck accidents and car accidents are both examples of motor vehicle collisions that cause thousands of deaths and many more injuries each year. However, the similarities between the two do not extend much further, especially from a legal standpoint. The process of handling a truck accident claim compared to a car accident claim is much different for a variety of reasons.
Some of the issues that make truck accident claims more complex than standard car accident cases include:
- Severity of the crash
- Catastrophic injuries and deaths
- Trucking company liability
- Third-party liability
- Aggressive trucking company defense
- High-value claims
- Extensive economic and non-economic damages
To make certain you are handling your claim correctly, start by teaming up with Metzger Wickersham. Our experienced and proven personal injury lawyers know the ins and outs of both truck accident claims and car accident claims. While you focus on recuperating, let us handle everything else, from gathering important evidence to building your case to negotiating with the insurance company on your behalf.
Proving Liability in Truck Accident Claims
Truck accidents are also different from most standard car accidents in that they create a unique set of liability circumstances that require extensive investigation. Often, after a car accident, there is usually just one liable party: the negligent driver that caused the accident. However, the truck driver who hit you is probably not the only party who can be found partially liable for your damages.
In many truck accident cases, the following parties may be partially or wholly liable:
- The Trucking Company: Just like most employers are liable for the conduct of their employees, trucking companies are often liable for accidents caused by their drivers. In some cases, trucking companies are responsible for accidents because they violated federal or state hours-of-service regulations, or because they failed to conduct proper background checks on new hires. Whatever the case, our truck accident attorneys know how to fully investigate these accidents to determine what factors played a role in the crash.
- Maintenance Crews: Some truckers depend on independent teams of maintenance crew members to inspect and fix their vehicles at regular intervals. If maintenance crews fail to perform proper routine maintenance and/or repairs, they may be liable for resulting accidents. When these teams are independently contracted, accident victims may be able to file third-party claims or lawsuits against them and seek compensation/supplementary compensation for their damages.
- Loading Crews: An incorrectly loaded or overloaded truck can cause it to tip, rollover, jackknife, or otherwise become uncontrollable. In some cases, an overloaded truck’s brakes will fail, leading to serious and often-fatal collisions. Load crews sometimes load trucks without the truck driver ever being given a chance to check their work. A crash could be caused in part by a load crew’s mistakes, and when this is the case, these parties could be held independently liable for resulting injuries and damages.
Other parties could also be liable for a truck accident, such as negligent passenger vehicle drivers, manufacturers that create or distribute defective parts or vehicles, and others. Our firm can handle the complex nuances of your case to determine who is liable—and we will fight for the maximum recovery you are owed.
Trucking Companies Are Aggressive Adversaries
All motorists are expected to operate their vehicles safely on the road. However, due to the size of 18-wheelers and tractor-trailers, commercial drivers have a special duty to operate their rigs with extra care and professionalism. Trucking companies and their drivers are required to carry more insurance coverage and must meet higher safety standards, including many federal regulations that other vehicles do not have to meet.
Trucking companies generally have large resources and large insurance companies backing them up. They will do whatever they can to collect evidence and protect their own interests. That's why it is important to contact a skilled personal injury lawyer immediately after an accident with a truck. Without professional legal representation, it is quite likely that your rights will be undermined and that you will be forced to settle for less than what your accident actually cost you.
Fight For Maximum Compensation with Metzger Wickersham!
At Metzger Wickersham, our skilled Pennsylvania truck accident attorneys may be able to assist you with your case. With over 130 years of continuous legal service to Pennsylvania residents, our firm's experience speaks for itself. If we represent you, you can rest assured that our lawyers and paralegals will handle your case with unmatched dedication, compassion, and professionalism every step of the way.
With offices in Harrisburg, Lancaster, Pottsville, Shippensburg, Wilkes-Barre, Williamsport, and York, we can meet with you anywhere in Pennsylvania. We are also available to travel to your home or meet you in the hospital if needed. And, because we offer our services on a contingency fee basis, you owe nothing upfront and pay zero out-of-pocket expenses when you hire our firm. Instead, we only collect attorney fees if/when we win your case.