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Inadequate Driver Training

Syracuse Lawyers for Victims of Truck Accidents

Truck accidents often result in catastrophic injuries or even deaths due to the weight and size of commercial trucks. If you were injured in a truck accident, you may be anxious about how you’ll pay enormous medical bills and take time off work to recover. And if a loved one dies in a truck accident, it can take away a second income that was being used to pay for food and childcare and the mortgage. Most families don’t have enough saved up in the case of catastrophic injuries or a death. An experienced Syracuse truck accident attorney can assess your chances of recovering compensation from a trucking company if you suspect you were injured because of inadequate driver training.

Inadequate Driver Training

Often catastrophic injuries or death are the outcome of truck accidents caused by a driver with inadequate training. In order to establish a truck driver’s liability, you will need to prove that it’s more likely than not: (1) the truck driver owed you a duty of care, (2) breach of the duty of care, (3) causation, and (4) damages. The duty of care can be breached in many different ways. It may be breached through drunk driving, texting while driving, tailgating, aggressive driving, weaving, drugged driving, talking on the phone while driving, speeding, and distracted driving. These matters should be addressed in training.

Trucks are more difficult to maneuver than cars. For that reason, a truck driver’s training must also include training about regarding how to safely check blind spots, how to make wide turns safely, and how to handle various emergency situations, among many other things. Unfortunately, not all trucking companies are diligent about making sure a driver is adequately trained.

When a truck driver is an employee of a trucking company, it should be possible to hold the trucking company vicariously liable for negligent acts by the driver while the driver is working. However, in some cases, you can hold the trucking company directly liable for inadequate driver training. In order to hold the trucking company responsible for negligent training, you’ll need to show that the lack of training bears a causal relationship to the injuries. When a breach of duty is too far removed from an accident, it won’t be possible to show the causal link that’s needed to recover damages. A knowledgeable injury lawyer can assess whether this may be an issue in your case.

Comparative Negligence

New York follows the doctrine of comparative negligence in personal injury lawsuits, and trucking companies may exploit this rule, trying to find some way in which you were partially or fully to blame for an accident, even if the company did not properly train an employee involved in the accident. The jury will be asked to evaluate the arguments and evidence of both sides, and assign a percentage of fault to each of the parties.

As the plaintiff, your total damages can be reduced by an amount equal to your percentage of fault. For example, if the jury decides you suffered $200,000 in damages, but it determines that because you were traveling at an excessive speeds and trying to pass a truck that was turning, while the trucking company inadequately trained its driver in making wide turns safely, it could find that you are 50% at fault for the truck accident while the trucking company is 50% at fault. In that case, you would only be able recover $100,000 from the trucking company.

In some situations the truck driver and trucking company may share responsibility for a truck accident. For example, the truck driver may be found directly liable for their negligence in taking the wide turn, while the trucking company may be found liable for failing to adequately train the driver in making those wide turns.

Consult an Experienced Truck Accident Attorney in Syracuse

If you have suffered injuries or lost a loved one in a truck accident arising out of inadequate driver training in Syracuse, you can consult a seasoned trial lawyer about whether you may be able to sue the potentially responsible parties, including the trucking company. DeFrancisco & Falgiatano represents truck accident victims in personal injury lawsuits in Syracuse, Rochester, and throughout Upstate New York, including in Ithaca, Binghamton, Cooperstown, Canandaigua, Auburn, Lyons, Wampsville, Herkimer, Elmira, Utica, Oneida, Oswego, Watertown, and Lowville. Please call us at 315-479-9000 or contact us via our online form.

Client Reviews
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"We were very impressed with how Jeff DeFrancisco represented us at trial and we were extremely happy when the jury found in our favor." D.M., Auburn, NY
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"I cannot express in words what an awesome job Charlie Falgiatano and Jean Marie Westlake did in representing my family in my mother's case at trial. There can never be enough thank-yous." D.L., Cortland, NY
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"I suffered a serious injury as a result of medical malpractice. My husband and I retained Jeff DeFrancisco to assist us in this case. We were extremely happy with his representation and highly recommend him." Kelley R., Syracuse, NY
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Since the insurance company was unwilling to settle the matter my case ultimately went to trial. At trial Jeff DeFrancisco did an absolutely amazing job by obtaining a very favorable result for me." T.H., Oneida, NY
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"I highly recommend DeFrancisco & Falgiatano - Charlie represented me for a medical malpractice case. He is the best of the best. He is friendly and I am very happy with the representation he provided." Roger N., Oneida, NY