Louisiana Truck Accident Attorneys

While Louisiana is a fantastic state in which to live, like many other states, we have too many truck accidents. If the negligence of a truck driver or some other party caused a severe injury, you’ll need the help of an experienced lawyer to help you get the compensation it will take to pay for expenses such as medical bills, lost wages and more.

Penn Kestner & McEwen truck accident attorneys have that experience and a passion for helping our clients get the justice and compensation they deserve. If you want to schedule a free consultation, you can use our online contact form or call (800) 732-3070.

Trucking Regulations Specific to Louisiana

The state of Louisiana has specific regulations for trucking operations in addition to the federal regulations set by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Some of the key regulations for trucking in Louisiana include the following:

  • Vehicle requirements – Louisiana requires trucks and all other commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) to be properly maintained and equipped with safety features, such as functional brakes, lights, and mirrors.
  • Hours of service – Louisiana truck drivers must comply with the FMCSA’s hours of service regulations, which limit the number of hours a driver can operate a CMV in 24 hours and seven consecutive days.
  • Driver qualifications – All Louisiana truck drivers must have a valid commercial driver’s license (CDL) and meet the FMCSA’s medical and fitness standards.
  • Insurance requirements – All trucking companies operating in Louisiana must have liability insurance coverage in case of accidents or damage to other vehicles or property.
  • Electronic logging devices – As of December 2017, all CMVs must have an electronic logging device (ELD) installed to record the truck driver’s hours of service.

Louisiana Truck Accident Statistics

According to the Louisiana State University Center for Analytics & Research in Transportation Safety, 95 fatal crashes involving CMVs in 2022 resulted in 98 fatalities. Seventy-three of those fatalities were drivers (the statistics provided didn’t differentiate between truck and passenger car drivers), while 12 were passengers. Another 13 non-motorists died as a result of those accidents.

Common Causes of Louisiana Truck Accidents

There are a lot of ways a truck accident can occur. Truck drivers – like everyone who gets behind the wheel of a vehicle, can have a bad day. Sometimes they’ll take their aggression out on other motorists by speeding, tailgating, or cutting off others on the road. When truckers don’t have enough experience, they’ll be more prone to potentially devastating mistakes. These include driving while distracted and failing to drive safely on wet or icy roads.

But trucking companies can contribute to accidents as well. They may, for instance, neglect routine maintenance, such as checking the brakes or tires. When a failure occurs, as a result, that can result in a horrifying collision. Companies will also place unreasonable schedules on their drivers, forcing them to stay behind the wheel so long they’re exhausted.

Injuries Associated with Large Truck Accidents

Of course, there’s a significant size difference between a CMV and a passenger car. That difference subjects motorists and other occupants to tremendous forces that can result in debilitating injuries and tragic deaths. Some of the more common injuries suffered in truck accidents include the following:

  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Severe burns
  • Liver, spleen and other internal injuries
  • Fractured and broken bones
  • Spinal cord injuries

Who’s Liable for My Injuries?

A truck accident case is often very complicated because there could be a lot of parties that contributed to the wreck. It takes a skilled attorney to determine liability and then demand compensation for those who are to blame. Some potentially liable parties include the truck driver, the company that owns the truck, the truck manufacturer, and the company that loaded the vehicle. Here’s some more information on each.

Steps to Take After a Truck Accident

The first thing you’ll need to do is to summon medical help immediately. Do this even if you think you’re okay because some injuries, such as head trauma, don’t show symptoms for hours or even days. Check on others involved in the wreck and get help for them as well if possible.

When you call 911 to report the accident, the dispatcher will send police and emergency medical personnel. The officer will ask you how the accident took place. While you want to tell the truth, you should never assume even the slightest amount of blame. The reason is the officer will put your statement in the police report, and this report will be a significant piece of evidence in your case. If you say you’re partially responsible, the insurance company will use that against you, making it much harder for you to obtain compensation.

If your physical condition allows, take pictures of the accident scene. Make sure you get photos of any fresh skid marks on the road because those could indicate the truck driver was speeding. Also, get the names, email addresses and phone numbers of anyone who saw the accident.

Finally, speak with an attorney as soon as you’re safe. Your lawyer will investigate to find out why the accident occurred and then establish all the liable parties. Talking to an attorney as soon as possible will be crucial because the earlier the investigation begins, the better the chances your lawyer can get the proof it takes to make your case its strongest.

Do I Need to Hire a Truck Accident Lawyer?

You’re going to need legal representation. If you don’t have an attorney working for you, you’ll basically have no chance to obtain the money you deserve. The insurance policies covering trucking companies can be worth millions of dollars, and insurers and trucking operations will do everything they can to protect those policies. Only an experienced lawyer will have the skill and resources needed to overcome this opposition.

Contact Penn Kestner & McEwen to Schedule a Free Case Evaluation

Let a Penn Kestner & McEwen truck accident attorney put their knowledge of the law to work for you. Schedule a free case evaluation by calling (800) 732-3070 or contacting us online.