While having control of a vehicle that can legally weigh up to 80,000 pounds should warrant constant attentiveness, not every commercial tractor-trailer operator pays attention to the road at all times. Unfortunately, even a few seconds of distracted driving can have catastrophic consequences if it results in a collision with another car. However, a skilled lawyer could help.
With the exception of texting while driving, distracted driving is not a ticket-able offense in the state of Ohio, so demonstrating fault for distracted driving truck accidents in Chardon can often be a complicated endeavor. By retaining counsel at Tittle & Perlmuter, you could give yourself much better odds of achieving a positive case outcome and recovering the compensation you deserve.
A number of things inside or outside of a commercial truck’s cab could cause momentary distractions, the most common of which in recent years is a text message on a cell phone or smartphone. Other common sources of distraction that lead to truck crashes include, but are certainly not limited to:
Although no truck driver means to cause an accident, he or she can still be considered negligent for the purposes of civil litigation. Assuming a distracted driving truck accident victim in Chardon can prove that distracted driving directly caused their damages, he or she could hold the driver, their employer, or the insurance company representing either party financially liable for those damages.
However, because a police report filed at the scene of an accident generally will not indicate that distracted driving led to the crash, prospective plaintiffs must depend on other forms of evidence to demonstrate fault. An attorney can provide crucial assistance tracking down witnesses, seeking out security camera footage, working with accident reconstruction experts, or even subpoenaing cell phone records and/or truck black box data.
In addition to proving fault by a reckless or careless trucker, Chardon plaintiffs in distracted driving truck wreck lawsuits must also be able to show that they were not negligent. Under Ohio Revised Code §2315.33, any plaintiff found partially responsible for damages is subject to a proportional reduction of the final damage award, and any plaintiff more than 50 percent to blame for an accident cannot file suit over that incident at all.
Additionally, O.R.C. §2315.18 sets a cap of $250,000 or thrice the amount of economic damages—whichever is higher—on non-economic damages. However, this cap does not apply in cases involving catastrophic injuries. Finally, O.R.C. §2305.10 sets an effective deadline of two years after an accident occurs for anyone injured as a result of it to file suit.
Distracted truck drivers have the potential to cause immense and lasting harm to other drivers and passengers with whom they share the road, and there is only so much civil recovery can do to offset the losses caused by these crashes. However, successfully holding a negligent trucker liable through civil litigation is often the best way for truck accident victims to protect their future and best interests.
A qualified legal professional at Tittle & Perlmuter could discuss what legal options may be available after distracted driving truck accidents in Chardon during a private consultation. Call today to schedule yours.