Truck Accidents Can Result in Amputations

Amputations are seldom discussed in the context of motor vehicle accidents. There is the occasional case in which a serious accident will result in the fire department having to cut someone out of his or her vehicle, which can result in a necessary amputation, but such accidents are rare. When it comes to truck and motor vehicle accidents, however, there is a specific type of crash that can lead to crushing injuries, and as a result, amputations. Whether you required an amputation as the result of multiple broken bones that didn’t set properly, or your limb was severed as the direct result of the accident, amputations can change your life.

Types of Truck Accidents and Causes

Although truck accidents can happen in the same way many car and motorcycle accidents do, such as rear-end and intersection accidents, there are specific types of accidents unique to large trucks that Florida drivers need to watch out for:

  • Jackknife Accidents – This accident typically only occurs with tractor-trailers when there is a weight differential between the front and back end of the truck. When the truck driver brakes hard, the weight differential can cause the front and back of the truck to fall out of line, and the carriage might suddenly careen, folding the truck into an L or V shape and out of the control of the truck driver.
  • Rollover Accidents – Typically occur when the truck driver makes a sudden turn on a shape curve or turns too fast, causing the cargo to tip and the truck to roll over. If a vehicle is in another lane when the truck rolls over, this could result in serious injuries or even death.
  • Tire Blowout – There are actually specific federal regulations that govern truck tires because of the weight they are required to bear. If the tires are underinflated or there is separation between the tread and the sidewall, the tire can essentially explode, throwing the truck off balance and into another vehicle.
  • Blind Spot and Merging Accidents – Because of the length of 18-wheelers, there are certain areas on the sides and behind the truck where the driver cannot see other drivers. Accordingly, the truck may merge into you when changing lanes, causing serious accidents.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reports that the leading causes of large truck crashes are:

  • Speed
  • Distraction
  • Inattention
  • Fatigue
  • Alcohol
  • Truck driver illness

When it comes to amputations, however, there is one type of accident that can even be fatal. It is called an “underride” accident. According to NBC, almost 200 people are year are killed by truck underride accidents, which occur when a vehicle drives or is forced under an eighteen-wheeler either from the side or back. The front of the car will fit directly under the truck’s carriage, shearing the top of the vehicle off and crushing the driver in front. Drivers and passengers often have to be cut out of their vehicles, and the front crush of the vehicle can result in catastrophic injuries to the passenger’s legs, resulting in a necessary amputation.

Recovering Compensation After a Large Truck Accident

Because Florida is a no-fault state, there is an injury threshold for recovery in Florida state court. Your injuries must fall into one of the following four “threshold” categories in order to sustain a legal claim:

  • Significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function
  • Permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability
  • Significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement, and
  • Death.

An amputation qualifies under three of the above categories, and it can result in significant financial recovery for you and your family. If a serious truck accident results in an amputation, you can seek the following compensation if you were injured:

  • Out-of-pocket medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Future lost wages and earning capacity
  • Loss of benefits
  • Loss of enjoyment of life, such as an inability to play sports or run
  • Medical equipment, including prosthetics
  • Specialized vehicles, ramps, or home modifications  
  • Physical and occupational therapy
  • Pain and suffering
  • Other identifiable compensable damages

If your injuries and expenses are linked to the truck accident and resulting amputation, then you are entitled to seek compensation. Speak with your Florida truck accident attorney today about your options for recovery.

Special Needs After an Amputation

As you can imagine, an amputation can change the course of your life. Whether you’re unable to continue with your career, your interests, you are in great pain, or it simply takes years of rehabilitation to regain your independence, amputations are not your typical injuries. They can also result in serious future injuries that you should consider before settling your case or making a demand for compensation. For example, learning how to use a prosthetic can result in unexpected pain and injuries, such as strained back muscles. This may mean you will need a continuing course of chiropractic, massage, and physical therapy that your insurance may not cover. If you’re younger when the accident occurs, you may need different prosthetics as you age, which can be an incredible expense. Most seriously, there can be many future complications when it comes to amputations, including infection and loss of blood flow to the area due to compression of blood vessels. This means you must continue with physician follow up to ensure your wound is healing and subsequent complications are caught at an early stage.

Contact a New Port Richey Truck Accident Lawyer to Discuss your Case

Because amputations are serious, permanent injuries that meet Florida’s injury threshold, you may be entitled to significant compensation from the truck driver and trucking company. If you or a loved one was injured in a Florida truck accident that resulted in a catastrophic injury, such as an amputation, contact the Dolman Law Group today. Their attorneys understand federal and state trucking regulations, and they can help fight for your right to compensation to help rebuild your life. They are your premier truck accident lawyers in New Port Richey, Florida. Call them today at (727) 853-6275 for a free, no-risk consultation.

Dolman Law Group
5435 Main Street
New Port Richey, FL 34652
(727) 853-6275