Semi-trucks and other large commercial vehicles crisscross Canada’s roads and highways on a daily basis. These vehicles transport a wide variety of goods and materials around the country, from food to logs/lumber to gasoline. While extremely important to the entire North American economy, commercial trucks and their cargoes can also pose a significant risk of injury to other people using the roadways. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) indicates1 that these vehicles can weigh as much as 20 to 30 times as much as most passenger vehicles on the road, making them capable of causing extremely serious damage and injury in the event of a collision.
Fortunately, in many cases, victims from truck accidents can recover for their injuries through a personal injury claim. There are certain steps that victims can take to maximize their chances of recovery, some of which are discussed below.
Seek medical attention – It is critical for people who have been injured in a truck accident to seek medical attention. In many cases, the adrenaline and shock associated with involvement in an accident may make it difficult for victims to gauge the severity of their own injuries, and some injuries may not even become symptomatic for hours or even days after an accident. Undergoing a thorough medical evaluation will ensure that your injuries are identified, treated, and that an important record documenting the extent of your injuries is generated.
Collect information regarding your accident – Truck accident victims should gather information about their accident if they are physically able. Some of the kinds of facts of which to make note include the license plate numbers of the vehicles involved, the names of the individuals who were driving, any markings that identify the owner or operator of the truck, and the weather conditions at the time of the accident. If able, they should also take pictures of the vehicles and accident scene as soon as possible.
Consult a lawyer as soon as possible – A lawyer can advise a truck accident victim concerning their legal obligations (eg. reporting the accident and providing a statement to ICBC) and of their rights to insurance accident (Part 7 or ‘no fault’) benefits2 such as income replacement payments (TTDs), rehabilitation treatments and health care expenses reimbursement. Once a truck accident lawyer is retained, he/she can assist with these matters and with making a claim for personal injury damages, typically on a contingency fee basis, which means that a victim pays the lawyer nothing for their fees unless the claim is successfully resolved. In many cases, the earlier a lawyer becomes involved, the better the ultimate resolution of the case. In addition, B.C.’s Limitation Act3 places a strict 2 year time limit on how long after an accident an accident victim can file a claim, so delay may result in an inability to recover compensation for your injuries.
Contact a Vancouver truck accident lawyer today to schedule a consultation
Truck accident victims often sustain extremely serious injuries. In many cases, they suffer from extended periods of physical pain and emotional suffering and incur significant financial losses for lost wages/business income and‘out of pocket’ expenses. They may also incur ongoing personal and household care expenses as a result of a longer term disability. The Vancouver truck accident lawyers of McLarty Wolf are dedicated to helping truck accident victims recover for their injuries. Contact our office today at 604-688-9542.