There are many costs associated with a trucking accident. For instance, some of the most commonly heard of costs can include cargo damage, vehicle damage, injury costs, medical costs, cost of insurance increases, and towing costs. However, there are other costs typically involved that can take hold on a large scale for a company: loss of clients, lost sales, salaries paid to employees in an accident, cost to hire replacement workers, accident reporting, and much more. This cannot only be expensive, but also time-consuming and frustrating for those involved, as well as the major trucking company who is now losing in many ways. This is one of the biggest reasons why commercial truck drivers must take special precautions when they are working.
Many are urging that companies become aware of the fact that trucking accidents cost big money and that these troubles do not go away overnight. There is a tremendous amount of revenue that must be generated to make up for lost profits associated with the hidden costs from these terrible and life-changing accidents. In fact, to put things into perspective, consider the fact that the average cost of a truck accident is $148,279!
Extreme Settlement Numbers
Yes, commercial trucking accidents do not come at a cheap cost. In many cases, the plaintiff (the one who was injured by the negligent truck driver) will suffer significant damages and will file suit to get the compensation they feel they deserve. However, the truck driver is not to blame for every accident, only some. Sometimes fault will shift to the other driver. Here are some examples of huge settlements from trucking accidents:
- A semi-truck hit a plaintiff’s vehicle and she suffered two broken legs and multiple fractures as a result. This lead to several months in the hospital for her injuries as well as many surgeries and lengthy rehabilitation. Because of this, she received $1,850,000 at the time of her settlement.
- A tractor-trailer hit a plaintiff, who required surgery for a shoulder injury. This led to $275,000.
- A semi-truck rear-ended a plaintiff, who required fusion of neck vertebrae. The settlement was $350,000.
As you can see, many settlements like this will likely cause financial strain to the companies involved, even with insurance. Insurance rates could skyrocket and cost the company more. You can take, for example, the Walmart company truck that struck a limousine with Tracy Morgan inside and killed one of his friends. This has turned into a public relations nightmare with staggering costs.
Company Liability for Driver’s Conduct
You see, it is mostly considered the company’s responsibility when an incident occurs, unless the truck driver was an independent contractor. There is a primary theory of liability known as “respondeat superior” that holds a company liable for a traffic accident caused by a truck driver employee. If the acts were unintentional and committed within the scope of employment, the employer will be held liable. The losses that are caused by wrongful conduct should be placed on the employer as a cost of doing business.
Were you injured in a trucking accident and sustained severe injuries? Your first thought may be to take up a lawsuit due to the negligence that caused the accident in the first place. Call us today for more information. We have experience in trucking accidents and can help guide you along every step of the way.