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Commercial Truck Accidents

Our Approach

According to the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicle report issued in 2020, there were over 28,300 commercial trucking accidents recorded, a number not including all other types of commercial vehicles, like contractor vans and hearses. Accidents involving commercial vehicles fall under different laws and regulations and can be especially complex if the business operating the vehicles is based outside of Florida, or even another county.

Regulations for Heavy Duty Commercial vehicles include, but are not limited to:

  • Drivers must have and maintain a commercial driver’s license (CDL)
  • The fleet must meet requirements such as maximum weight, height and width, etc.
  • Making sure the vehicles are properly upkept with regular safety inspections as well as repair and routine maintenance.
  • There must be a record or logbooks of the maintenance and other safety checks.
  • Regular testing of drivers for drug and alcohol use
  • Time restrictions, making sure the drivers limit their time on the road and are not overworked.
  • Making sure the driver was not using his or her cell phone for calls or texting while driving.

Our Story

The definition of a commercial vehicle is extremely important when you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident. These types of collisions are not limited to just semi-trucks. If a vehicle involved in an accident has company branding or logos, then the rules may be different from your everyday fender bender.

These vehicles are defined as:

  • The transportation of property and/or passengers
  • Primary use on a highway
  • A self-propelled or motor vehicle with towing capabilities
  • Other forms:
    • Specifically designed to transport a minimum of more than eight passengers for compensation including the driver.
    • Or the transportation of 15 or more people, including the driver, without compensation.
    • The transportation of hazardous materials
    • A gross vehicle weight of 10,000lbs or more, which includes almost all semi-trucks as well as 18-wheelers and tractor-trailers. These regulations cover tour buses and vans but have to be used in interstate commerce.

The full list can be found on the U.S. Government information website.

What to do if you were involved in a commercial vehicle accident in Florida

When you are involved with a commercial vehicle accident, it is important to know how to handle the situation:

  • Seek medical treatment immediately, even if you are experiencing minor aches, pains or soreness. . The adrenaline and stress of an accident can delay the onset of more significant symptoms for days.
  • Take as many pictures and videos of the damaged vehicles and accident scene as possible.
  • Make sure to get the U.S Department of Transportation Number for the vehicle in question.
  • Do not sign any paperwork from the commercial vehicle’s company or speak with their insurance company or a claim adjuster without first speaking with an attorney.
  • Reach out to our Auto Accident team at 239-376-1591 and we can help navigate filing your claim.

How to prevent a commercial vehicle accident

Being an attentive and defensive driver is key to avoiding accidents. Being aware of the blind spots on commercial vehicles at all times is crucial for your safety. A good rule of thumb is that “if you can’t see their mirrors, they can’t see you”. Know the road conditions and be mindful that it takes commercial vehicles such as semi-trucks a lot longer to stop, and smaller commercial vehicles may have shelves full of parts or fragile parts that will also increase stopping distance.

Initiating claims for accidents involving commercial trucks and fleet vehicles have special considerations. Oftentimes, we see companies stonewall by not readily providing insurance information, or not returning calls because they believe they can outlast an individual. Call on our team to make sure you and your family get the compensation you deserve.


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