Call us!  (912) 461-6798
Call us!  (912) 461-6798

The sheer size difference between a 3,000-pound passenger car and a fully-loaded 80,000-pound semi-truck means that the occupants of the passenger car suffer much more severe injuries in the event of a crash.

If you were hurt in a truck accident and suspect the driver may have acted dangerously or carelessly and caused the crash, you should turn to a Savannah truck accident lawyer from Rafi Law Firm. Our state-renowned attorneys will work hard to help you receive the compensation you deserve.

savannah truck accident lawyer

Steps to take after being hurt in a truck crash

The moments after a crash are chaotic. Following these steps can help protect your health and can help your attorney build a strong case on your behalf.

1. Move to a safer location

Try to get yourself and your car out of traffic to prevent further injury. If you’re unable to drive your car, turn on your hazard lights and stand somewhere safe away from your car.

2. Call 911 and ask for police and an ambulance

Always call 911. Tell the dispatcher about the accident, including its location and any injuries or hazards.

The dispatcher will send paramedics and a police officer to the scene. Paramedics are trained to identify the signs of injuries that might not be immediately noticeable or visible. You should follow their advice regarding medical care, including being transported to the hospital.

3. Tell your side of the story to the responding police officer

The police officer who’s sent to the scene will be responsible for investigating the crash. This includes talking to all involved parties and witnesses and taking photos of the vehicles involved in the crash and skidmarks on the road.

All of this information will be included in the officer’s final report, including your statement. It’s important that you only tell them the facts and that you don’t speculate about anything such as the accident’s cause or other details.

4. Notify your insurance company

Most insurance policies require that you notify them that you’ve been in a crash, even if it wasn’t your fault. Your insurance company may be able to help provide you coverage following an accident while your claim against the truck driver or other liable parties is pending. 

5. Gather evidence at the scene

Take photos or videos of the accident, the damages to your car, your injuries, and the surrounding area such as damaged guardrails, skidmarks on the road, and other details of the scene. 

If there are any witnesses, collect their names and contact information so your Savannah car accident attorney can get their statements.

6. Visit Urgent Care or your primary care physician

Even if you don’t take the ambulance to the ER, you should seek medical care right away. Many injuries don’t present symptoms right away, but they can worsen without prompt diagnosis and treatment. Your medical records will also prove that your injuries are from the crash, which will be important for your case.

7. Consult with a Savannah truck accident attorney

Rafi Law Firm has the experience and resources necessary to handle even the most complex trucking accident cases. We provide insightful legal advice and communicate with all involved parties, their insurance companies, and their lawyers on your behalf to protect your interests so you can focus on healing.

As your legal advocate, your Savannah truck accident lawyer will help make sure you get the medical treatment you need and maximize the amount of your potential legal claim.

Make sure you meet the deadline to file a claim

The Georgia statute of limitations requires that personal injury claims resulting from semi-truck accidents be filed within two years of the date of the crash. If your case is filed after that deadline expires, you might be unable to collect damages from the liable party or parties.

Possible damages you can claim

In personal injury claims, the compensation you recover through settlement or a jury award is called “damages.” These damages are intended to put the injured person in the financial state they would have been in had the accident not occurred. The two primary types of damages in a truck accident are economic and non-economic. 

Economic damages

Economic damages are your calculable losses that come with a bill, invoice, or receipt:

  • Medical bills, including hospital stays, surgery, physical therapy, and medications, including those you’ve already incurred and those you’re expected to incur in the future.
  • Lost wages and benefits if you missed work due to your injuries
  • Loss of future compensation if your injuries prevent you from working at all or in the same capacity
  • Property damage such as repairing or replacing your vehicle

Pain and suffering damages

In Georgia, injured people with a viable case may be eligible for pain and suffering damages, a type that is more difficult to prove than economic damages, but just as real. You may be able to receive compensation for:

  • Interference with normal living or enjoyment of life
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Physical impairment
  • Fear and shock
  • Past and future actual pain and suffering
  • Past and future mental anguish.

Because there is no magic formula for how much pain and suffering damages should be awarded in a case, it’s important that you hire a skilled Savannah personal injury lawyer. The best lawyers are the ones that help their clients recover the most in pain and suffering damages.

We fight trucking insurance companies to get you the maximum compensation

A national trucking company may have an entire legal department ready to challenge any claims made by victims of a collision one of its drivers caused. At Rafi Law Firm, our Savannah truck accident lawyers know the tricks an insurance company will try to pull, and we have the knowledge to expose them and recover the compensation you deserve.

Parties who may be liable for the crash

Unlike other types of vehicle collision, truck accidents may have multiple defendants (at-fault parties):

  • The driver
  • Their employer
  • The freight company responsible for loading the truck because an uneven load can cause a truck to tip over
  • The truck manufacturer if there was a faulty design or problems in the manufacturing process
  • The municipality responsible for maintaining safe roads

We investigate all the details of your crash and name all defendants whose negligence contributed to the collision. Ensuring that all potential defendants are named in your claim can affect the amount of damages you recover.

How your truck accident lawyer will prove liability

Proving liability in a commercial truck accident takes four steps, and all four must be proven in order to have a successful case:

  • The defendant owed you a duty of care for your safety
  • The defendant failed to uphold the duty of care through negligence or oversight
  • This failure on the defendant’s part led to the accident and your injuries
  • You suffered financially as a result

To prove liability, your Savannah truck accident lawyer will talk to witnesses, depose the truck driver and all relevant persons such as their employer, and will issue subpoenas for digital records and other documents. For example, we may subpoena the trucking company’s safety records, the driver’s record, and the “black box” from the semi-truck.

savannah truck accident attorney

Semi-truck “black boxes”: What they are and how they may be used in your case

Just like an airplane, many semi trucks also have a “black box,” or an Event Data Recorder (EDR) that monitors specific data and information about the vehicle. The term “black box” actually refers to several different computer systems that record the truck’s speed, the time it’s operating, and when it’s involved in a crash.

Some EDRs record continuously, even when the truck isn’t moving (so it can record when the driver is taking their federally-mandated rest breaks), while other systems engage once they detect a collision. An EDR contains vital information for proving liability in a trucking accident case, so your lawyer will want access to its information. The trucking company is unlikely to willingly hand over that information, so issuing a subpoena is likely necessary.

Common truck accident injuries

Semi-truck accidents have a higher chance of causing catastrophic injuries, leaving victims partially or fully paralyzed or permanently disabled. Victims may suffer:

  • Lacerations and facial damage
  • Broken bones and fractures
  • Internal organ damage and internal bleeding
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Soft tissue injuries, like whiplash and strains
  • Spinal and back injuries

Unfortunately, many truck accident victims suffer multiple serious injuries, with a long, painful recovery ahead of them.

“Dos” and “don’ts” of dealing with insurance after a crash

You aren’t required to speak with the defendant’s insurance company. The only communication you should have with them is to provide them with your attorney’s contact information. You also shouldn’t sign anything the defendant’s insurer presents to you without first reviewing it with your attorney.

All correspondence and documents should be routed through your Savannah personal injury attorney

Cost of hiring a truck accident lawyer

The Savannah truck accident lawyers at Rafi Law Firm work on a contingency basis. This means that we collect legal fees only if we win your case. If we don’t win, you don’t owe us a thing. If we do win, our fees are taken as a predetermined percentage of your settlement or award – no surprises and no hidden fees.

Why you should visit a doctor as soon as possible

Seeking immediate medical care can play a vital role in the extent to which you can heal and recover. “Hidden injuries” such as brain injuries, back or neck injuries, whiplash, or soft tissue injuries don’t always show signs right away, but they can quickly worsen significantly without a prompt diagnosis and treatment.

Insurance companies are infamous for claiming that accident victims aren’t hurt as badly as they claim or that their injuries weren’t caused by the accident. Seeking medical treatment immediately after your accident will help create a clear record that your injuries were a result of the accident.

Our Savannah truck accident lawyers are here to help

You deserve a legal advocate who focuses on your best interests and fights to ensure you get justice after a semi-truck collision. Trust Rafi Law Firm to guide you through the legal process and help you collect the compensation you need and deserve. We offer free consultations, so contact us today at (912) 461-6798 to schedule yours.

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