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Experienced Birmingham Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer

Injured in a Truck Accident? Call Our Truck Accident Lawyers Today!

In the heart of Alabama, Birmingham stands as a beacon of growth and opportunity, its sprawling metro area bustling with life and energy. As the city attracts new businesses and industries, offering a variety of new jobs and prospects to locals, it strengthens our local community and economy. Yet, with this rapid expansion comes an increasing hum of activity on our roads - from the relentless I-459 to I-65 interchange to the Red Mountain Expressway that cuts through the heart of our beloved city. 

The very roads that connect our growing community, allowing it to thrive and expand, also become stages for potential tragedies, especially involving large trucks or vehicles. In these moments of unexpected turns, when life as you know it can change in the blink of an eye on these very roads, the need for understanding, support, and guidance becomes more crucial than ever.

A commercial vehicle accident can be devastating to all vehicles involved, often resulting in significant damage, serious injuries, or even fatalities. The sheer size and weight of commercial vehicles, such as trucks and buses, mean that the impact of such accidents can be far more severe than those involving only passenger cars. The aftermath can leave victims facing long-term recovery, mounting medical bills, loss of income, and the emotional toll of dealing with such a traumatic event. 

Understanding your rights and options is crucial in these moments, as is the support of a skilled truck accident lawyer in Birmingham who can navigate the complex legal landscape to ensure you receive the compensation and justice you deserve.

Common Truck Accident Injuries

Truck accidents are among the most catastrophic road incidents due to the massive size and weight of these vehicles. The injuries resulting from such collisions can be severe, life-altering, and in some cases, fatal. 

Understanding the common injuries that victims of truck accidents face is crucial for recognizing the gravity of these events and the comprehensive care required for recovery. Here are some of the most frequently encountered injuries:

Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI): High-impact collisions with commercial trucks often result in head trauma, leading to TBIs. Symptoms can range from mild concussions to severe brain damage, affecting cognitive functions, physical abilities, and emotional well-being.

Spinal Cord Injuries and Paralysis: The force exerted in a truck accident can cause damage to the spinal cord, potentially resulting in partial or complete paralysis. Such injuries can drastically alter a victim's lifestyle, requiring long-term medical care and assistance.

Broken Bones: The intense force of a truck collision can lead to fractures in various parts of the body. Some fractures are more complex and may require surgical intervention, followed by extensive physical therapy.

Internal Injuries: Internal organs can be damaged in truck accidents due to blunt trauma or penetration injuries. These conditions are particularly dangerous because they may not be immediately apparent and can be life-threatening if not treated promptly.

Cuts and Lacerations: Shattered glass, metal fragments, and other debris can cause serious cuts and lacerations. These injuries can lead to significant blood loss, infections, and may leave permanent scars.

Burns: Explosions or fires resulting from truck accidents can cause burns ranging from minor to severe. Severe burns may require long-term treatment, including skin grafts and reconstructive surgery.

Whiplash and Soft Tissue Injuries: These injuries affect the muscles, ligaments, and tendons, often leading to pain, swelling, and reduced mobility. While less visible, they can have a lasting impact on a victim’s quality of life.

Wrongful Death: Tragically, the most severe truck accidents can result in fatalities. When a victim dies as a result of the accident, their loved ones may pursue a wrongful death claim. This legal action can provide compensation for funeral expenses, lost income, loss of companionship, and other damages related to the loss of life.

Understanding these common injuries and the potential for fatal outcomes underscores the importance of seeking immediate medical attention following a truck accident. It also highlights the need for experienced legal representation to navigate the complexities of personal injury and wrongful death claims, ensuring victims and their families receive the compensation necessary for their recovery and future well-being.

What is a Commercial Truck?

A commercial truck, also known as a heavy vehicle, plays a crucial role in the backbone of the economy, facilitating the transportation of goods across cities and states. However, due to their significant size, weight, and the specialized nature of their operations, these vehicles are subject to specific regulations and considerations, especially on the roads of Birmingham and beyond. Understanding what constitutes a commercial truck is essential for recognizing the complexities involved in accidents and legal claims associated with these behemoths of the road.

Commercial trucks are defined by their purpose: vehicles used for business operations, particularly for transporting commercial goods. These include, but are not limited to:

Semi-trucks (18-wheelers): Perhaps the most recognized form of commercial trucks, semi-trucks consist of a tractor unit that pulls one or more large trailers. They are crucial for long-haul transportation, carrying everything from consumer goods to industrial equipment.

Box Trucks: Often seen delivering furniture or large parcels within cities, box trucks feature a cubic cargo area on a chassis, with the cab separated from the cargo space.

Tanker Trucks: These are specialized for transporting liquids or gases, often hazardous materials, requiring drivers to have specific training and certifications.

Flatbed Trucks: Characterized by their open trailers, flatbed trucks transport goods that are too large or awkwardly shaped for enclosed trailers, such as construction equipment or large machinery.

Dump Trucks: Used primarily in construction and materials transportation, dump trucks can carry large quantities of materials like sand, gravel, or demolition waste.

Refrigerated Trucks: These trucks have temperature-controlled trailers used for transporting perishable goods, including food and medical supplies, to ensure they remain fresh over long distances.

Tow Trucks: While smaller than the other types mentioned, tow trucks are commercial vehicles used to move disabled, improperly parked, or impounded vehicles.

Buses and Delivery Trucks: Included in the category of commercial vehicles, buses serve the crucial role of transporting passengers, often across city or school routes, while delivery trucks ranging from large vans to compact trucks, are key in the last-mile delivery of packages and goods to consumers and businesses.

Commercial trucks are indispensable to our economy, serving as the lifeblood that ensures the steady flow of goods across the nation. From the food we eat to the clothes we wear and the gadgets we use daily, commercial trucks play a pivotal role in delivering essentials and luxuries alike. 

However, given their size and the potential risk they pose on the roads, these vehicles and their operators are held to a higher standard of safety through stringent rules and regulations. These standards are designed to protect not only the truck drivers but also all road users, including pedestrians and drivers of passenger vehicles. When these regulations are disregarded or violated, the consequences can be dire, leading to accidents that can harm innocent people.

How Do Commercial Truck Accidents Happen in the Birmingham Metro Area?

The bustling streets and highways of Birmingham, Alabama, serve as a central hub for commerce and transportation in the Southeast. With the city's growing economy and expanding infrastructure, the volume of commercial vehicles weaving through the Birmingham metro area is on the rise. However, this increase in heavy traffic also elevates the risk of accidents involving these large trucks.

Understanding the common causes of these accidents is crucial for both prevention and in seeking justice and compensation after an incident. Here’s a closer look at how truck accidents happen in our community:

Congested Traffic: Birmingham’s major highways, including I-65, I-20, and I-459, alongside busy roads like Highway 280, are notorious for heavy traffic, especially during rush hours. The mix of commercial vehicles and personal cars in congested conditions often leads to accidents due to reduced reaction times and limited maneuvering space.

Fatigued Driving: The demand for commercial truck drivers to meet tight delivery schedules can result in extended hours on the road, leading to driver fatigue. Despite regulations meant to limit driving hours, tired drivers are a common cause of accidents, as fatigue significantly impairs reaction time and judgment.

Improper Loading: Commercial trucks carrying improperly secured or overloaded cargo pose a significant risk. Shifts in cargo can cause drivers to lose control, leading to jackknife accidents or rollovers, especially on Birmingham's curvy and hilly terrain.

Poor Vehicle Maintenance: Regular maintenance is critical for commercial vehicles due to their size and the strain of long journeys. Brake failures, tire blowouts, and other mechanical issues due to poor maintenance can lead to catastrophic accidents.

Inexperienced Drivers: The booming demand for truck drivers can lead to companies hiring less experienced individuals. Inadequate training and inexperience in navigating Birmingham’s complex highway system can increase the likelihood of accidents.

Distracted Driving: Like all road users, truck drivers can be guilty of distracted driving. Using navigation systems, smartphones, or other electronic devices while driving, or even eating and drinking behind the wheel, can divert attention from the road and result in accidents.

Weather Conditions: Birmingham’s weather can sometimes be unpredictable, with heavy rainstorms, fog, and even ice in the winter months. Adverse weather conditions can reduce visibility and road traction, making it challenging for all vehicles, especially commercial trucks, to navigate safely.

Steps To Take After a Truck or Car Accident

Being involved in a truck or car accident can be a frightening and overwhelming experience, especially on the bustling roads and highways in and around Birmingham. Knowing the right steps to take immediately following an accident can greatly impact your safety, the outcome of any legal actions, and your ability to receive compensation. 

Here's a comprehensive guide to help you navigate the crucial moments after a truck accident:

    Ensure Safety First: Check yourself and others for any sign of injury. If it's safe and possible, move to a safer location away from traffic to prevent further accidents. Turn on your vehicle's hazard lights to alert other drivers.

    Call 911: Reporting the accident to the police is not only vital for safety but also legally required in many cases. The police will document the scene and provide a report that is crucial for insurance and legal purposes.

    Seek Medical Attention: Even if you don't think you're injured, it's important to see a doctor as soon as possible. Some injuries, like whiplash or internal trauma, might not be immediately apparent.

    Document the Scene: Take photos and videos of the vehicles, road conditions, traffic signs, and any visible injuries. This visual evidence can be invaluable for insurance claims and legal proceedings.

    Exchange Information: Collect names, contact information, vehicle registration details, and insurance information from all parties involved. If there are witnesses, get their contact information as well.

    Notify Your Insurance Company: Inform your insurance company about the accident as soon as possible. Provide them with the information collected at the scene but avoid making any admissions of fault.

    Keep a Record of Medical Treatments: Document all medical visits, treatments, diagnoses, and expenses related to the accident. This information will be important for insurance claims and potential compensation.

    Consult a Personal Injury Attorney: Before accepting any settlement offers from insurance companies, it's wise to consult with an attorney who specializes in truck and car accident cases. They can advise you on your rights and the best course of action to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.

    The Role of Negligence In Truck Accident Law

    Negligence plays a crucial role in commercial truck accident cases because it establishes the basis for liability. In legal terms, negligence refers to the failure to behave with the level of care that someone of ordinary prudence would have exercised under the same circumstances.

    When it comes to commercial truck accidents, proving negligence is essential for a successful claim because it demonstrates that the accident was caused by someone's careless or reckless actions, and therefore, they are responsible for the damages incurred.

    Here's how a Birmingham truck accident lawyer can help establish negligence to win your commercial truck accident case:

    Identifying the Responsible Party: An experienced accident lawyer can meticulously investigate the accident to determine all potential sources of negligence. Whether it's the truck driver, the trucking company, the manufacturer of truck parts, or other entities involved in the truck's operation and maintenance, your lawyer will identify who is at fault. By demonstrating negligence, your attorney helps pinpoint the responsible parties for the accident.

    Linking Negligence to the Accident: Your attorney plays a crucial role in proving that the accident was a direct result of the negligent party's actions or inactions. This might involve gathering evidence to show that the truck driver was driving under the influence, violating hours-of-service regulations, or that the trucking company failed to maintain the vehicle properly. Through detailed investigation and leveraging expert testimonies, your lawyer will establish a clear link between negligence and the accident.

    Establishing the Right to Compensation: Once negligence is proven, your attorney will argue for your right to receive compensation for damages incurred, including medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. The ability to effectively establish negligence is key to determining the compensation amount, which often hinges on the extent of the negligence and the severity of the damages caused.

    Understanding Contributory Negligence: Alabama follows the doctrine of contributory negligence, which is crucial to comprehend in the context of your truck accident case. Under this doctrine, if the injured party is found to be even 1% at fault for their injuries, they lose the right to recover any compensation. This stringent rule makes it essential to have an attorney who can meticulously build your case to show that you hold no responsibility for the accident.

    A Birmingham truck accident attorney’s expertise in establishing negligence is paramount to the success of your commercial truck accident claim. By leveraging their knowledge and resources, you significantly enhance your chances of winning your case and securing the compensation you rightfully deserve.


    Our 3-Step Process

    Connect With Us:

    Call our office at (877) 715-9300 or use our online form to arrange a no-cost, no-obligation consultation with our Birmingham legal team.

    We Assess Your Case

    In our initial review, our experienced Birmingham team will analyze the details of your case and map out potential strategies. If you've experienced an injury due to negligence, we’ll assign one of our expert personal injury attorneys to handle your case.

    We Defend Your Rights

    As one of the Southeast’s top personal injury firms, Wettermark Keith is fully committed to advocating for your rightful compensation and recovery. If an injury has disrupted your life, let our dedicated Birmingham attorneys seek justice on your behalf.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    The time frame to file a truck accident claim in Birmingham, Alabama, is governed by the state's statute of limitations. In Alabama, you generally have two years from the date of the accident to initiate a lawsuit for personal injuries or property damage resulting from a truck accident. This legal deadline is crucial because failing to file within this period typically means you lose your right to seek compensation through the courts.

    A truck accident lawyer can provide you with detailed information relevant to your specific case, help you understand the legal timelines, and ensure that your claim is filed promptly, safeguarding your rights to compensation.

    The Birmingham Metro Area encompasses seven counties in Alabama: Bibb, Blount, Chilton, Jefferson, St. Clair, Shelby, and Walker. In 2023, there were 39,123 reported accidents in the Birmingham Metro Area, with 1,590 of those accidents involving large trucks.

    Yes, you can accept a settlement offer from the trucking company's insurance company, but it's highly advisable to do so only after consulting with an experienced truck accident attorney. Accepting a settlement offer without legal advice may result in receiving compensation that is significantly less than what you are entitled to or what is necessary to cover your medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages.

    Trucking companies and their insurance providers are often quick to offer settlements to minimize their payouts. These initial offers may not fully account for the long-term impact of your injuries, including ongoing medical treatment, rehabilitation costs, and the potential for future income loss. An attorney with experience in truck accident cases can evaluate the offer, negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf, and help ensure that any settlement reflects the full extent of your damages and losses.

    Moreover, once you accept a settlement and sign a release, you typically forfeit your right to pursue any further compensation related to the accident, even if your condition worsens or additional expenses arise. Therefore, it's crucial to have a clear understanding of your current and future needs, as well as the settlement's terms, before agreeing to it.

    If you're considering a settlement offer from a trucking company's insurance company, we strongly recommend scheduling a consultation with our Birmingham truck accident attorneys. We can provide you with the insight and representation needed to make informed decisions and strive for a settlement that truly compensates for your injuries and losses.

    Hiring a truck accident attorney typically involves a contingency fee arrangement, meaning the attorney's fees are contingent upon securing a financial recovery for your case. Under this agreement, you do not pay any upfront fees or hourly rates. Instead, the attorney's fees are a percentage of the settlement or judgment amount you receive when your case closes. If your case does not result in a settlement or verdict, you owe the attorney nothing for their services.

    Not all attorneys take an injury case to trial, as the approach to handling personal injury cases can vary significantly from one law firm to another. Some personal injury attorneys may prefer to settle cases out of court whenever possible, while others are prepared to go to trial to ensure their clients receive the best possible outcome. At Wettermark Keith, our lawyers’ approach is tailored to the unique needs and best interests of each client we serve.

    Our dedicated truck accident attorneys are not only skilled in negotiating fair settlements but also have the experience and resources to take truck law cases to trial if necessary. We understand that sometimes the settlement offers presented by insurance companies or opposing parties do not fully compensate our clients for their losses and suffering. In such instances, our commitment to our clients' rights and well-being drives us to pursue the case in court.

    No Recovery, No Fee - Guarantee!

    At Wettermark Keith, we stand firmly behind our commitment to alleviating the burden that accidents and injuries place on you and your family. We understand the stress and financial strain that can come with seeking justice and compensation for your injuries. That's why we operate on a contingency fee basis - this means you will not be charged any legal fees unless we successfully recover compensation on your behalf.

    Schedule a Free Consultation with Our Birmingham Truck Accident Lawyers Today

    The road to recovery after a truck accident in Birmingham can be long and fraught with challenges. However, you don't have to navigate this journey alone. Wettermark Keith's dedicated team of Birmingham truck accident lawyers is here to stand by your side, offering expert legal guidance every step of the way. Our attorneys’ commitment to justice and unwavering support have helped countless individuals and families find the compensation and closure they deserve.

    By choosing to work with us, you're not just gaining legal representation; you're partnering with a team of lawyers who genuinely care about your well-being and are committed to alleviating the burdens you face after an accident. Our track record speaks for itself, but it's our lawyers’ personalized approach and dedication to our clients that truly set us apart.

    Wettermark Keith™, with offices located throughout Alabama, Tennessee, and Florida, has an excellent reputation as one of the most accomplished personal injury firms in the country. Wettermark Keith’s reach is not only regional, but it also includes a diverse range of practice areas, including personal injury cases, auto wrecks, trucking wrecks, nursing home abuse, medical malpractice, on-the-job injuries, social security disability, and veterans’ disability claims, to name just a few. At Wettermark Keith, we believe in taking cases personally. Our purpose is to practice with care and compassion - to tell our client’s stories and make their voices heard. We do this by building strong relationships based on constant communication and an unwavering dedication to truth and trust. Winning cases isn’t our goal - caring for you is. Winning is just how we show it. As we say, It’s more to us, it’s personal.

    Wettermark Keith was extremely professional and helpful. This personal injury law firm helped my husband over 10 years ago when he fell and broke his foot on vacation. I called them first because I liked their TV commercials. They are very nice people and I would call them again if I needed a lawyer.

    - Juanita

    Law firm Wettermark Keith has exceeded my expectations! I recommend these lawyers to anyone and everyone I come across. Their commitment to their clients is outstanding. Communication is easy. And I got my settlement very fast. I definitely recommend working with Lee Hawker. He is very gracious and kind. He looked out for me and my family and went above and beyond for us. I’m very grateful!

    - Alexa

    My personal embattlement with the Social Security Administration went downhill. From a personal recommendation, I reached out to Wettermark Keith law firm. Brian Smith and his team took my case and throughout the whole process, I felt more than just another number. Frequent updates were provided, and emphasis was placed on ensuring all needed documentation was in place. In the end, the accident case resulted in a favorable victory. A big thank you to my lawyer Brian Smith and the team at Wettermark Keith for the hard work throughout the entire personal injury process.

    - Dallas

    I had the pleasure of working with Mr. Mark English at Wettermark Keith law firm after my car accident in December 2021. He was very thorough in everything, did a wonderful job of explaining everything that was happening, and was super easy to get in touch with when I needed him. I never had a question that was left unanswered by this lawyer. He's very kind and patient, and he made the personal injury claims process so easy for me. I absolutely recommend him, it was a pleasure working with him!

    - Rose

    I am so elated that I utilized Mr. Muhammad Abdullah’s services. In the beginning, he told me the compensation that I would receive for my personal injury claim and I actually received more than that! After my car wreck (in my brand-new vehicle), I was actually surprised that I was in the pain that I was in. Mr. Abdullah made sure I saw the necessary people for therapy and worked hard to get me back into my car after the accident. I felt that he was diligent, listened to my concerns, and quickly got me back in my car and compensated! I will be utilizing Mr. Abdullah again and again, anytime I ever have to hire a lawyer.

    - Madinah