Commercial drivers often spend long hours on the road, working to meet strict delivery deadlines to keep their employers satisfied. In their haste, these drivers may engage in dangerous driving activities, such as speeding, failing to take proper breaks, or failing to conduct appropriate inspections of their vehicles. These practices can cause serious, life-threatening accidents, and employers should be held accountable for drivers’ actions that are taken for their benefit. The truck accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Robert Dixon assist victims in Miami and other South Florida communities with claims not only against a negligent driver, but also against employers and others that may be vicariously liable for causing their injuries.Holding a Negligent Trucking Company Vicariously Liable for Your Injuries
Truck accidents can be caused by a host of factors. They can result in extensive property damage, life-altering injuries, and even the tragic loss of lives. In 2011, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that over 3,600 truck accidents proved fatal. Many of these crashes are attributable to driver fatigue, excessive speeding, faulty parts or maintenance of those parts, and impaired drivers or inexperienced drivers who lack the proper training or licenses. Truck drivers who cause an accident may be held liable for their own negligent acts if a victim shows the driver failed to exercise the due care that a reasonable and prudent driver would have used under similar circumstances. In addition to holding drivers accountable for their actions, victims may also pursue claims against additional parties that have a responsibility to make sure truckers operate their vehicles in a safe manner.
Under a vicarious liability theory of fault, trucking companies may be held liable for the negligent actions of their drivers if they were acting within the scope of their employment when an accident occurred. An employee is acting within the scope of employment if he or she is taking actions to benefit an employer or further the business in any way. For instance, a driver who is excessively speeding in order to make sure his delivery is on time is acting for the benefit of the company employing him. Even if the driver’s actions are in violation of a trucking company’s policies or standards, the company may still be held liable for actions that are related to its business operations.
Actions that may fall outside the scope of employment could include accidents that occur while a driver is running a personal errand, after he or she has completed a delivery and all other tasks related to work. In addition, an employer may not be vicariously liable for crimes committed by a driver in furtherance of his or her own personal agenda. Damages recoverable for injuries sustained in a trucking accident often include medical costs, property damage, lost wages or earning capacity, and pain and suffering. In the event that one of these crashes leads to a fatality, family members may file a wrongful death action against a trucking company to pursue expenses related to funeral or burial costs, as well as other damages.Explore Your Options with a Miami Lawyer after a Motor Vehicle Collision
Truck drivers and the companies that employ them are entrusted with making sure the massive vehicles under their control are operated safely. When drivers fail to adhere to safety measures and act negligently, all accountable parties should be held liable for the damages they cause. The knowledgeable injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Robert Dixon can help Miami residents assert their right to compensation for their harm. If you have been involved in a collision with a big rig, call (877) 499-4878 or contact us to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation regarding your case. We also represent injured individuals in the Fort Lauderdale area and other cities across Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach Counties.