Jackknife Truck Accident Lawyer in Tampa - Paul Knopf Bigger
Were you injured in a Tampa jackknife truck accident? This kind of collision can cause considerable injuries and property damage. Jackknifing often occurs due to the careless operation of a truck trailer. If you were involved in a jackknife truck accident caused by someone else, you should not bear the financial burden of your injuries.
A seasoned truck accident attorney can stand up to the big trucking companies and their insurers to help you seek the compensation you deserve. When you contact Paul Knopf Bigger, a Tampa jackknife truck accident lawyer from our firm can discuss how you may pursue financial relief and justice.
Our attorneys and staff have dedicated their careers to helping injury victims and fighting injustice. Our firm provides every client with personalized service and thoughtful legal advice. Your well-being is our priority. We have a proven track record of results, including having litigated and won cases against large companies.
If you were injured in an accident with a jackknifed truck, we can help you seek the compensation you need for medical bills, vehicle repairs, and lost wages. Contact Paul Knopf Bigger today for a free initial case evaluation with a Tampa jackknife truck accident attorney.
What Is Jackknifing?
Jackknifing accidents involve a truck towing a trailer, carrier, or other equipment on an articulated joint or hitch. Jackknifing occurs when the rear end of a truck’s trailer begins to swing out from the direction of travel and forward toward the truck’s cab. This movement causes the truck and its trailer to fold in on each other like a pocket knife folding into its handle.
When a truck jackknifes, the driver can lose control of the vehicle, as the trailer may swing too close to the cab, causing the wheels to lose contact with the ground or decoupling the truck and trailer if the hitch breaks. A jackknifing truck that veers out of control can easily collide with other vehicles, cyclists, or pedestrians.
What Causes Jackknife Truck Accidents in Florida and Tampa?
A truck can jackknife for various reasons. However, jackknife semi-truck accidents typically happen when the truck’s driver loses control of the vehicle. Some of the most common causes of a jackknife truck accident in Florida and Tampa include:
- Speeding or driving too fast for road conditions, such as slippery roads
- Improper braking
- Making a turn or taking a curve too fast
- Unbalanced cargo weight
- Inexperience with trailers or semi-trailers
- Taking too sharp of a curve or turn
- Traveling too fast down an incline
- Inadequate truck or trailer maintenance
- Brake or tire defects that lead to mechanical failure, tire blowouts, or tread separation
- Poor road conditions, including broken pavement, potholes, slick road surfaces, standing water, or debris on the road
- Adverse weather conditions, including heavy rain or high winds
- Truck driver negligence, including intoxicated driving, drowsy driving, distracted driving, or illegal or improper road maneuvers
What Are the Most Common Jackknife Truck Accident Injuries in Florida and Tampa?
In a truck jackknife, the trailer can swing across multiple lanes or off the road, potentially hitting other motorists, cyclists, or pedestrians. Getting struck by an out-of-control truck or trailer can cause catastrophic, life-altering, even fatal injuries. Some of the most common injuries from jackknife truck accidents include:
- Severe lacerations, abrasions, and scarring
- Degloving injuries
- Crush injuries
- Puncture wounds from shrapnel or debris
- Burn injuries from post-accident fires
- Broken bones
- Dislocated joints
- Ligament sprains or tears
- Muscle and tendon strains or tears
- Nerve damage
- Neck and back injuries, including herniated spinal discs
- Spinal cord injuries and paralysis
- Internal injuries and bleeding
- Facial injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Traumatic amputation, dismemberment, or limb loss
How Is Liability Determined in a Florida Jackknife Truck Accident?
Depending on the cause of a jackknifed truck, various parties may bear liability for the accident, such as:
- The truck driver
- The trucking company
- The truck’s owner (if not the truck driver or trucking company)
- The cargo or freight company
- The truck’s mechanic
- The truck/trailer manufacturer
- Brake, tire, or truck part manufacturers
Your Tampa truck accident attorney will gather and preserve crucial evidence to determine who is liable for your injuries and losses from a jackknife truck accident. Examples of evidence our law firm may use to determine who is responsible for your Tampa jackknife truck accident include:
- The truck driver’s hours-of-service logs
- Logs from the truck’s event data recorder (“black box”)
- The truck driver’s post-accident drug/alcohol test results
- The truck’s cargo manifest
- Pre-trip inspection reports
- The truck’s maintenance and repair records
- Post-accident truck/trailer inspections
- Surveillance/traffic camera footage
- Dashcam footage
- Police accident reports
- Eyewitness testimony
- Accident scene photos and videos, including photos of road and weather conditions
- Accident reconstruction expert reports and testimony
What Are Recoverable Damages or Compensation in a Florida or Tampa Jackknife Truck Accident?
You could recover compensation for financial and personal losses in a Florida or Tampa jackknife truck accident caused by someone else. With a successful claim, you could be compensated for the following:
- Vehicle repair expenses, including car rental costs
- Reimbursement for the value of your totaled vehicle
- Costs of medical treatment and rehabilitation for your injuries, including hospitalizations, surgeries, prescriptions, doctor’s appointments, medical or mobility equipment purchases, and physical or occupational therapy
- Costs of home care or support services if you suffer long-term or permanent disabilities that leave you unable to complete daily activities
- Loss of wages or income when you take time off work while recovering from your accident injuries or earn less on part-time or light duty
- Loss of future earnings and work benefits if you develop a disability that prevents you from returning to your job or being gainfully employed
- Physical pain and suffering
- Reduced enjoyment and quality of life because of permanent disabilities or visible scarring and disfigurement
- Emotional distress, including anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
What Is Your Time Limit for Filing a Jackknife Truck Accident Lawsuit in Florida?
Florida’s statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits, including truck accident cases, gives you only two years from the accident date to file a lawsuit. If you file a lawsuit after the two-year deadline, the court can dismiss your case regardless of its merits, and you may lose your right to seek compensation in civil court from those at fault for the accident.
Because you have limited time to file a jackknife truck accident lawsuit, talk to a Florida jackknife truck accident attorney from Paul Knopf Bigger as soon as possible. We can review the facts of your case and ensure that you meet all crucial deadlines.
What You Should Do After a Jackknife Truck Accident
After a catastrophic jackknife truck accident, you can take steps to protect your health and your rights. You should do the following after a jackknife truck accident:
- Report the accident to law enforcement and stay at the scene until the police arrive if your injuries are not life-threatening. Remember to request a copy of the police accident report, which could be crucial evidence if you file a claim or lawsuit.
- Get the truck driver’s license number, insurance information, and employer contact details.
- Notify your car insurance provider about the accident so you can file a claim for compensation under your personal injury protection (PIP) coverage.
- Seek prompt medical attention to have your injuries diagnosed and treated. Even if your injuries appear minor, you should seek a doctor immediately. Some symptoms take days or weeks to manifest.
- Follow your doctor’s recommended treatment plan, take all prescribed medications, and keep all follow-up appointments to ensure your injuries heal.
- Request copies of your medical records from your treatment and rehab.
- Keep all bills, invoices, and receipts of expenses related to the accident, including vehicle repairs and medical treatment.
- Gather your pay stubs or income statements if you miss work or suffer a reduction in your earnings due to your injuries.
- Keep a diary or journal to record physical pain, emotional distress, or difficulties with daily activities you experience due to your injuries or subsequent medical treatments.
- Avoid discussing the accident or posting photos and videos of yourself on social media. Insurance companies sometimes monitor social media accounts for posts that contradict an accident victim’s official account of what happened, such as photos of an accident victim playing sports after claiming to have suffered disabling injuries.
Finally, contact a Florida jackknife truck accident attorney from Paul Knopf Bigger as soon as possible after an accident to learn about your legal options and discuss the steps to take to pursue compensation and justice.
Get in Touch with a Tampa Jackknife Truck Accident Attorney
If you’ve suffered devastating injuries in a jackknife truck accident in Tampa, you deserve to hold those at fault for the crash accountable for the harm they caused you. Get help from an experienced Tampa jackknife truck accident attorney at Paul Knopf Bigger. We will work tirelessly to pursue the financial relief and justice you deserve.
Our seasoned legal team is committed to fighting injustice and making a difference in the lives of accident victims. Contact our office today for a free no-obligation consultation with a Tampa jackknife truck accident attorney.