Colorado Truck Accidents: The Actions of a Trucking Company That Make Them Liable

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Colorado is a state known for the beauty of its landscapes, from gorgeous canyons to the mighty Rocky Mountains. Its communities are heavily reliant on trucking to supply their necessities. 

With trucking comes an increase in truck accidents. As it is trucking companies that operate these vehicles, they can be held liable for any accidents caused by their fleet.

The laws surrounding trucking can get pretty complicated. If you or a loved one has been in an accident involving a truck, Colorado truck accident lawyers can offer some clarity with their comprehensive knowledge of local laws and the steps involved in acquiring fair compensation.

How do the actions of trucking companies make them liable? 

There is a concept of “vicarious liability,” which means that a person can be held responsible for the actions of another person. In this case, trucking companies can be held responsible for accidents caused by their truck drivers. Given below are some actions that make trucking companies liable for accidents.

Not conducting proper background checks on their drivers

If trucking companies fail to conduct adequate background checks on their drivers, they can be held responsible for any crashes that result from the truck driver’s negligence.

A driver crashing while under the influence of drugs and the company failing to conduct the required drug tests prior to hiring the driver is a good example.

Not training truck drivers

It is the responsibility of the company to ensure that their drivers have the proper licenses and undergo the right training to operate their trucks. They can be held liable if the drivers are found to have insufficient training or lack the proper licenses.

Not maintaining their fleet

Trucks are huge, complex machines that require regular maintenance to function properly. If trucking companies refuse to conduct regular maintenance checks or fix broken parts on their vehicles, they can be held liable for the accidents caused by them.

Not following hours-of-service limits

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) imposes a restriction on the number of hours a driver on-duty can operate a vehicle. This is to ensure that drivers have sufficient rest and are not overworked. 

Being fatigued can impair the ability of drivers to make decisions that can lead to fatal accidents. Trucking companies sometimes force drivers to break the hours-of-service rules, directly or indirectly. 

Not complying with hours-of-service limits can lead to companies being held liable for trucking accidents. Trucking companies have to ensure the safety of their drivers and the people they encounter on the road.

Challenges in proving liability

It may be difficult to prove liability in some cases, as the laws surrounding trucking involve numerous parties and a web of detailed regulations.

Independent Contractors

If the company hires independent contractors to drive their trucks, they may not be considered full-time employees, depending on how the company deals with them. Drivers may not have regular hours or receive benefits. In such instances, the company may not be held responsible for the accident.

Multiple parties are involved

It can be challenging to prove that a trucking company is at fault if there were multiple parties involved in an accident, as comparative negligence comes into play. Trucking companies also have strong defense attorneys to back them up, which makes it harder to establish clear liability.

Conclusion

Accidents can be painful and costly affairs. Hiring a Colorado truck accident lawyer can help you understand the complicated laws surrounding truck accidents and navigate the process of receiving fair compensation.

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