How Do You Prove a Truck Driver’s Negligence After an Accident?
Negligence or carelessness of a truck driver can result in personal injury or property damages. Proving negligence by a truck driver after an accident in Florida can be challenging and may involve multiple parties from different states. Although it is a complex process, it is possible. To prove negligence in a trucking accident case, you must demonstrate that the driver failed to exercise reasonable care and caution while operating their vehicle and that this failure directly caused the accident and any resulting injuries or damages.
What is Negligence?
Negligence is failure to exercise reasonable care and prudence when one has a duty to behave with a high level of care, resulting in harm or injury to another person. Examples of negligent behavior exhibited by truck drivers may include:
- Drunk Driving: Truck drivers should not drive while under the influence of alcohol or any drugs, and doing so can be considered negligent behavior.
- Distracted Driving: Distracted driving involves texting or talking on the phone while behind the wheel. Truck drivers are prohibited from using cell phones while driving.
- Excessive Speeding: Like other drivers, truck drivers must obey all traffic rules. If a driver is found to have been driving too fast past the speed limit, this can be considered negligent behavior.
- Driving While Fatigued: Florida laws require truck drivers to work a set number of hours and take regular rest breaks. If drivers fail to do this, they pose risks to themselves and other road users. If one is found to have been operating their vehicle while fatigued, this can also be considered negligent behavior.
- Poor Vehicle Maintenance: Trucking companies are legally obligated to ensure that their vehicles are properly maintained and road worthy. If a driver is found to have been operating a vehicle with known mechanical issues, they can be considered negligent.
Proving a Trucker Driver’s Negligence After an Accident
To prove that an accident in Florida was a result of a truck driver’s negligence, you need to show the following:
- The Truck Driver Had a Duty of Care
In Florida, truck drivers and trucking companies have a legal duty of care while operating their vehicles on public roads and highways. Truck drivers must operate in ways that ensure the safety of other drivers and pedestrians by obeying all traffic rules and driving at a safe and reasonable speed. In addition, truck drivers are prohibited from operating their vehicles while under the influence of drugs or alcohol and from using cell phones while driving.
Trucking companies also have a duty of care to ensure that their vehicles are properly maintained and in safe working order. They are also responsible for training their drivers properly and monitoring their compliance with all federal and state regulations. To prove the negligence of a truck driver, you must demonstrate that the truck driver or trucking company had a duty of care to act reasonably.
- The Truck Driver Breached the Duty of Care
You must demonstrate that the truck driver’s actions breached the duty of care.
- That You or the Victims Suffered Injuries
You will be required to show that the truck driver’s breach of duty directly caused the accident and resulting injuries. You must demonstrate that the driver’s actions were the primary cause of the accident and not simply a contributing factor.
- That You or the Victims Suffered Damages
You must demonstrate that the truck driver’s actions directly led to damages suffered.
Evidence You Can Use to Prove a Truck Driver’s Negligence
- Eyewitness Statements: These statements can provide valuable insight into the events leading up to the accident and can be used to establish fault on the truck driver’s part.
- Driver’s Logbook: Truck drivers must maintain detailed logs of their service hours and follow federal rest breaks regulations. If the driver was operating their vehicle in violation of federal hours of service regulations, a driver’s logbook could be used as evidence of negligence.
- Vehicle Maintenance Records: Trucking companies are required to maintain detailed records of the maintenance and inspection of their vehicles. If a truck is found to have been in poor condition or to have known mechanical issues at the time of the accident, this can be used as evidence of negligence.
Contact Our Vero Beach Truck Accident Attorney Today
If you or your loved one was hurt in a truck accident due to a driver’s negligence, contact our experienced truck accident lawyers in Vero Beach and schedule a free consultation today. We can help you increase your chances of successfully proving negligence and securing the compensation you deserve.