Most of the deaths and injuries that result from truck accidents involve people riding in smaller vehicles. This makes sense because truck drivers have the benefit of being in a much larger vehicle that may weigh up to 80,000 pounds. The driver and passengers in the other vehicles are the only ones likely to receive catastrophic injuries in a collision.
The Typical Damages From a Trucking Accident
If you have been injured in a collision with a truck, you might want to contact a trucking accident attorney. You may have suffered very serious injuries that will need medical attention for several years. Your vehicle could have also sustained extensive damages or may need to be replaced.
After a collision with a truck, your injuries may be minor, but they can also be devastating. Sometimes, you do not know that you are seriously injured because the adrenaline rush that surges through your veins during a car accident prevents you from feeling any pain. Even so, you can have internal injuries that need immediate and ongoing medical attention. Obvious injuries also may need many years’ worth of treatment. For this reason, you should visit the emergency room after a collision with a truck.
Common Injuries in Truck Accidents
Needless to say, broken bones are common injuries from truck accidents. Car drivers commonly sustain breaks in their arms and hands as they brace themselves against an inevitable crash. Many passengers also sustain breaks in their legs and ribs. These injuries may require surgery to ensure that they can heal properly, but the victims may still experience changes in their mobility after the accident. This can last for several years after the accident occurs.
Many vehicles catch fire after a collision with a truck. The gasoline can spill out of the car or truck’s fuel tank and become ignited. Trucks are at a particularly high risk of catching on fire compared to other vehicles. When people sustain burns, they take a long time to recover, and they may experience several complications. Burns lead to many devastating consequences, such as amputations, skin grafts, and psychological trauma that remains with the victim for years.
Limbs often need to be amputated during truck collisions. If the injury results in restriction of blood flow to a particular area, that area may require amputation.
After an amputation, your expenses could last for many years. That’s because you will need to wear a prosthetic device, and these devices must be replaced every three to five years. They are very expensive, and you would have to bear these costs for the rest of your life.
Spinal Cord Injuries
A spinal cord injury can mean that you will have to be in a wheelchair for the rest of your life. If not, it could mean that you need the assistance of other mobility aids. These injuries also lead to impairment of your abilities in the lower regions of your body.
Traumatic brain injuries can result in headaches and the inability to obtain restful sleep. You can also experience cognitive deficits and memory loss. Your family members may have even noticed that you seem as if you are a different person. After a trucking accident, a traumatic brain injury can make it difficult for you to regulate your emotions.
Traumatic Brain Injury
Many expenses can result from these collisions, including the following:
- Ambulance fees
- Hospital and other medical bills
- Medical devices
- Physical therapy
- Cognitive therapy
- Office visits
- In-home services
- Expenses for permanent disability
If you are undergoing medical treatment while your case is ongoing, your trucking accident attorney will include all of your immediate medical expenses and any ongoing costs as part of the damages sought in a lawsuit or an insurance claim.
If you are injured to the point where you cannot return to your job, you may also be entitled to receive lost wages. This can be for several reasons, including your time in the hospital, the time that you must spend in physical therapy, and your inability to perform your job duties. This requires that you present your past earnings to the jury and demonstrate that you are unable to earn this amount of money after the collision. You are going to need to show that your earning capacity has been diminished because of the accident.
Loss of Consortium
Married couples may be entitled to receive damages for loss of consortium. This means that the injured spouse is unable to be demonstrative with his or her affection. You may not be able to engage in sexual activity because of the injuries. If your spouse died, loss of their companionship qualifies for these types of damages. You can only claim these damages if you first receive damages for injuries due to the accident.
Other family members can also receive these damages. They would be considered to be damages for “loss of society and companionship.” You must demonstrate several specific things, including the negative impact that the victim’s death had on you and other family members. You must also show that you and the victim had a positive relationship before the person’s death.
Pain and Suffering
The mental and physical distress that you’re experiencing because of the collision is known as damages for “pain and suffering.” These damages will depend on the type of injury you suffered, how serious your pain is, and what can be expected in the future. Any lasting anxiety or stress because of the accident can also be a part of the damages.
In New Jersey, a wrongful death lawsuit results from someone’s negligent or wrongful actions. A collision with a truck is considered to be one of the negligence-based incidents for which you may receive compensation. In order to file this type of lawsuit, the circumstances must be present that would have otherwise allowed the decedent to file a personal injury lawsuit if he or she had lived. That is why another individual must be the one to bring this type of lawsuit. In a civil case, the defendant would receive an order to pay damages to the victim’s survivors if the plaintiff prevails.
Because trucks are so large and the vehicle you may have been riding in was much smaller, the result of a collision could have been fatal. The surviving spouse and certain other family members of the decedent may receive damages for the wrongful death. If there is an executor of the deceased’s will, he or she will be the person to file this type of lawsuit. The damages won in this type of lawsuit will go to the deceased individual’s spouse, children, grandchildren, parents, siblings, nieces, or nephews.
If you have been injured in a collision with a large truck, contact us at the law office of Rebenack, Aronow & Mascolo at (732) 394-1549. Our offices are located in New Brunswick and Somerville. We will be happy to answer any questions you may have about a trucking accident and your rights as a victim.