How to Handle a Car Accident Case Involving a Commercial Vehicle

Last Updated on February 5, 2024 by John Robinson

As we handle our day-to-day commute and driving to and from schools, stores, jobs, activities, and social outings, we encounter tons of other vehicles, many of which are commercial vehicles. Commercial vehicles are used for commercial or business purposes and are insured through a commercial insurance policy. 

At times, these accidents can be minor and merely an expensive inconvenience, but at other times they can be physically and financially catastrophic. Sometimes, the injuries and fatalities are caused by driver negligence, poor vehicle maintenance, or the company that employs the driver. 

Commercial vehicles may be heavier than typical passenger vehicles. Drivers may be pushing their limits by driving more hours than is legal, and their vehicles could be plagued with manufacturer defects or maintenance issues. The drivers may not be wearing seatbelts or could be distracted by various sensory inputs. 

Types of Commercial Vehicles That Can Potentially Cause Severe Injuries

If you are involved in an accident with one of the following commercial vehicles, it is imperative that you seek legal assistance so that you receive the maximum compensation for your damages. 

Listed below are some of the commercial vehicles that are most often involved in accidents: 

  • Logging trucks and trucks hauling logging equipment cause many traffic accidents. The loads, particularly of logs, may be imbalanced, which could cause the truck to turn over. Or logs that are not secured can come off of the trucks doing potentially disastrous damage. 
  • Public and school buses are large and awkward and full of passengers that cause distractions for their drivers. Bus accidents have so many people involved that the cases can be challenging to figure out since they are so complicated since there are multiple victims. 
  • Fleet trucks are, oddly enough, most often hit by other cars while they are sitting still in parking lots or making deliveries. 
  • Taxis and rideshare vehicles are susceptible to distraction since they are dealing with the apps that inform them about pickups and dropoffs, as well as GPS and traveling in unfamiliar areas. Pair that with being polite and fielding questions and making conversation with their current fares, they are particularly exposed to accidents.
  • Delivery vehicles are often in accidents because they spend so much time on the road with many starts and stops. They are usually traveling within cities and towns while facing many intersections daily. 
  • Company cars are owned by a business and operated by employees. 
  • Tow trucks are often pulling heavy loads and are awkward to maneuver in tight spaces and when lane changes are required. 
  • Hotel shuttles drive to and from the airport and attractions. This usually happens in crowded, busy areas with heavy traffic. The very nature of their routes increases their chances of being involved in automobile accidents. 

What Commercial Vehicles Have in Common

Commercial vehicles are typically larger than cars and other automobiles. This means they can easily become off balance which can cause serious accidents that lead to injuries and potentially fatalities as well. 

These commercial vehicles are owned by businesses that are responsible for the maintenance and their driver’s negligence. If the maintenance was not properly performed, leading to an accident, the business is responsible. If the driver was overworked or worked more hours than permitted without a break due to pressure from the business, they are liable for the damages. 

On the plus side, commercial vehicles normally come heavily insured. This protects the business that puts them on the road. It also protects you financially if you are injured by a commercial vehicle. 

Steps to Take if You are Involved in a Commercial Vehicle Collision

When an accident with a commercial vehicle that is owned by a business or the city occurs, the business might immediately contact its insurance agency, and they may dispatch an agent to the scene of the accident. According to the accident attorneys at Taxman Pollock Murray Bekkerman, this is not typical in automobile accidents unless one involves a commercial vehicle. 

When a commercial driver or business is liable for an accident, or if bad publicity about the accident could hurt their business, they can quickly try to offer a settlement to close the case. In such situations, it is also important to consult reliable sources of information, such as the Fair Go official website.

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Listed below are some of the steps you should take if you are in a traffic accident with a commercial vehicle: 

  • Seek medical attention immediately.
  • Contact law enforcement and ask for a copy of the accident report.
  • Do not admit fault or apologize. 
  • Take photographs of the scene and any damages or injuries sustained.
  • Look for traffic cameras or security camera footage promptly before it is erased.
  • Follow doctor’s orders.
  • Answer questions of the officers, but do not volunteer for extra information. 
  • Speak to your insurance company.
  • Contact a car accident injury lawyer
  • Get the contact information of those involved in the accident. 
  • If there were witnesses, get their contact information too. Your attorney can speak to them while the details are fresh in their mind, and that eyewitness evidence may help your case.
  • Keep up with all medical reports.
  • Keep a log of the expenses you incur due to the accident. These should include medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and more. 
John Robinson
John Robinson

Howdy! I’m John Robinson from Levittown, New York. I am a mechanical engineer for 15 years and already had an established car repair company. I developed a personal relationship with cars since I was a kid. I always love the sounds and smell emitted by a car or truck and even at construction machinery. Since then I have been married but my love for cars only grew.