Philadelphia Truck Accident Lawyer

Philadelphia Truck Accident Lawyer

Experienced Truck Accident Lawyers in Philadelphia

If you have been involved in a large truck accident, you have likely suffered serious injuries and incurred significant losses including medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, and more. An experienced Philadelphia truck accident lawyer can help you receive proper compensation for your losses.

While all traffic-related accidents can potentially cause serious accidents and injuries, accidents involving large commercial trucks can cause devastating damage.

Commercial trucks are much larger than regular passenger vehicles and can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds, unlike an average car that weighs around 3,500 pounds.

The US Department of Transportation along with the National Safety Administration (NHTSA) released a  joint report presenting evidence that crashes involving large trucks has increased 13 percent and truck accident fatalities have increased 5 percent.

If you have been involved in a serious trucking accident read on to learn more about your legal compensation from the skilled Pennsylvania personal injury attorneys at The Levin Firm Personal Injury Lawyers.

What Causes Truck Accidents?

Semi-truck driver error is the leading cause of accidents involving commercial trucks. the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) revealed that a commercial truck accident is ten times more likely to occur due to driver error than due to other factors.

Professional truck drivers are required to go through special training to obtain a commercial driver’s license and they should understand the risks that large semi-trucks pose on the roads.

Due to the extreme risk of injury to other motorists in truck accidents, professional drivers are held to a higher standard of safety than operators of regular passenger vehicles.

Unfortunately, truck drivers do not always abide by their duty to drive safely and driver negligence routinely causes truck accidents.

Some examples of truck driver negligence that leads to serious accidents include the following:

  • Driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Driving while fatigued or violating FMCSA rules.
  • Unlawfully driving with a serious medical condition, such as a heart condition or epilepsy
  • Engaging in distractions, such as using a handheld mobile device, eating, grooming, and more
  • Failing to complete all required pre-trip inspections
  • Aggressive driving, including speeding, following too closely, improper passing, or intimidating other motorists
  • Taking turns too quickly
  • Failing to adequately pay attention to blind spots
  • Driving a commercial vehicle without the proper license or training
  • De-powering the brakes in the front of the truck
  • Otherwise violating traffic laws or FMCSA regulations

All truck drivers who negligently cause accidents and injuries should be held fully accountable for any losses suffered by accident victims.

Because drivers will not often simply admit to making an error, identifying driver negligence may often be complicated.

An experienced Philadelphia truck accident attorney has the knowledge and tools to investigate the driver’s actions to identify negligence to help victims recover.

Other Potentially Negligent Parties In Truck Accidents

In addition to truck drivers, several other factors may lead to serious truck accidents.

Some of these potentially negligent parties include:

Trucking company—The trucking company may be found negligent if an accident is caused by the hiring of inexperienced or unqualified drivers, failing to conduct the required drug and alcohol testing on drivers, failing to supervise or discipline drivers to ensure FMCSA compliance, encouraging unsafe practices to improve their bottom line, failing to sufficiently inspect and maintain trucks in the fleet, and more.

Cargo loading team—An independent cargo loading team may be held accountable if an accident is caused by over-loading, under-loading (generally for liquid cargo), or failing to properly secure the cargo in the trailer of a truck. Cargo mistakes can cause trucks to have trouble braking or stopping or may cause roll-over or jackknife accidents.

Truck manufacturer—Manufacturers have a duty to produce and sell truck parts that are safe for use. For this reason, if a defective truck part—such as brakes, tires, axles, steering columns, coupling, and more—malfunctions and causes an accident, the manufacturer should be held liable under product liability principles.[4]

Government entity—The government has a responsibility to properly inspect and maintain roads and highways and keep them free of dangerous hazards. Large commercial trucks are particularly susceptible to losing control when they hit a pothole, a large crack in the pavement, uneven lanes, or other hazardous conditions. If a truck encounters a road hazard and an accident occurs, the negligent government entity should be accountable to the losses of victims.

Truck Accidents: FAQs

Each year in Pennsylvania, there are well over 100 fatal accidents involving large trucks, and thousands more people are injured in such accidents.

If you’ve been injured in a truck accident or have lost a loved one in a truck accident that was caused by a truck driver’s negligence, you undoubtedly have a lot of questions.

The following are some of the questions that our clients frequently ask our truck wreck attorneys.

Why are truck accidents so dangerous?

Philadelphia 18 Wheeler Accident Lawyers | Truck Accident Lawyer in Philadelphia The main thing that causes truck accidents to be among the most severe motor vehicle accidents on the roadway is the truck’s size. Trucks can weigh up to 20 to 30 times more than a passenger car.

Large trucks are much taller and have a higher ground clearance. Some of the ways this impacts the driver’s ability to maneuver the truck are:

  • Increased stopping distance: Loaded tractor-trailers take up to 40 percent more distance to stop on dry roads and under safe speeds. This distance increases with speed and on wet or icy roads.
  • High center of gravity: The truck’s higher center of gravity makes it prone to rollovers when approaching corners at high speeds or during accident avoidance maneuvers.
  • Wide turns: The length of the truck requires a lot of space to complete a turn. This poses a risk to others in adjacent travel and turn lanes.
  • Blind spots: Trucks have significant blind spots on all four sides. Passenger cars that linger in these blind spots are at risk of getting struck because the driver cannot see them when he or she attempts to change lanes. Tow Trucks have similar blind spots.
  • Underride: The high ground clearance of a tractor-trailer poses a risk of passenger cars slipping underneath it during an accident.

I’m not even out of the hospital yet, and I already have insurance representatives contacting me. What should I say?

Insurance companies are in the business to make money for themselves. One of the ways that they do this is by offering quick, lowball settlements to accident victims. The problem with this is that these low settlements rarely take into consideration the full picture of the medical treatments you will need in the future as well as the impact that the injuries will have on your life.

Another way insurance companies make money is to get the injured party to say something that could be construed as admitting fault, therefore nullifying or reducing any potential settlement.

If the truck driver’s or trucking company’s insurance carrier contacted you, speak to an attorney before accepting any settlement or making any statement.

Your attorney will communicate with these representatives for you and will also work to establish a value to your case that is based on medical expenses you are facing currently, as well as future injury-related expenses that you will likely incur in the future; property damage to your car from the accident; expenses that will be required for permanent disability; lost wages and loss of future income potential; and the profound emotional and psychological impacts that your injuries may have.

Can I settle my truck accident case without an attorney?

While truck accident victims can technically settle a legal claim without the use of an attorney, this is almost always a bad idea. Your attorney can provide you with a wealth of legal knowledge and experience in truck accident cases that will generally result in a much higher settlement than you can obtain on your own.

Additionally, your lawyer is aware of the court requirements for filing and the time limits involved and has access to other experts—including those with knowledge of medical conditions and accident reconstruction—that can greatly help your case.

You can bet that the truck driver and the company he or she is employed by will rely on their attorneys, as will the insurance carrier. Why wouldn’t you rely on an attorney to guide you through the process and fight on your behalf?

If I hire an attorney, does that mean my case will go to court?

No. Many personal injury cases are settled before they ever reach the courtroom. However, your attorney’s services are always provided with the expectation that the case will go to court, including the notion of facing off against high-powered corporate lawyers that trucking companies often hire.

Your attorney should also be comfortable with the notion of aggressively negotiating the best settlement possible on your behalf.

What compensation can I recover through a truck accident lawsuit?

Pennsylvania law allows the recovery of both economic and non-economic expenses from liable parties in the event of a motor vehicle accident that results in injury. These expenses, also known as damages, include the following:

  • Economic damages: Medical expenses, including ambulance transport, emergency department treatment, hospitalization, diagnostic tests, labs, surgery, physical therapy, and medication; the cost to repair and replace your vehicle; the cost of handicap accessible features added to your home in the event your injuries require them; the cost of mobility equipment, including wheelchairs, handicap modifications on your vehicle, and prosthetics; missed wages due to being too injured to work or being required to miss work for injury-related appointments; the loss of future earning capacity or business opportunities; other out-of-pocket expenses, such as the cost of renting a car while yours is being repaired, transport to and from medical appointments, or the cost of hiring someone to complete household services that you’re no longer able to do because of the severity of your injuries.
  • Non-economic damages: Pain and suffering, embarrassment or humiliation, loss of the ability to enjoy the pleasures of life, and disfigurement.

It is hard to pinpoint an exact dollar amount for non-economic damages.

The jury determines this amount based on your age at the time of injury, the severity and permanence of the injury, how the injury has impacted your ability to enjoy your life and the activities you participated in before the accident, the severity of disfigurement involved with the injury, and the amount of physical pain and emotional anguish you have experienced.

In addition to economic and non-economic damages, punitive damages, which are designed to punish the defendant for particularly egregious behavior, may also be awarded.

The truck driver who caused the accident was arrested for DUI and is facing jail time. Can I still file a personal injury claim?

Yes. DUI is a criminal charge that will be prosecuted in criminal court. A personal injury lawsuit is a civil claim completely separate from criminal charges.

A successful outcome in a civil case does not result in the defendant’s conviction but rather the award of damages to the plaintiff.

Personal injury lawsuits may be filed whether or not the driver is arrested, convicted, or acquitted of the criminal charge.

One thing to note is that a conviction in criminal court is a powerful piece of evidence that may be used to prove liability in personal injury proceedings.

My husband died in a truck accident. Am I able to receive compensation?

Yes. When someone is involved in a fatal truck accident that was caused by another person or entity’s negligence, Pennsylvania law allows for the recovery of damages on behalf of the deceased’s family through a wrongful death claim. A personal representative may file a claim on behalf of:

  • The decedent’s spouse
  • The decedent’s minor children
  • The decedent’s adult children who were dependent on the decedent for financial and emotional support
  • The decedent’s parents

If a personal representative does not file a wrongful death claim within six months from the date of the death, then the beneficiaries have the right to file a claim on their own behalf. The damages that may be awarded from a wrongful death lawsuit include:

  • Funeral and burial expenses
  • Loss of future income
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of consortium (this refers to the loss of physical contact and intimacy for the spouse due to the decedent’s death)
  • Punitive damages, if applicable
PA Semi Accident Lawyer, Gabriel Levin
Gabriel Levin, Philadelphia Truck Accident Attorney

For more information and guidance as to your legal options regarding a Philadelphia truck accident, contact our experienced truck accident attorneys online or by calling (215) 825-5183.

How Negligent Trucking Companies Cause Accidents

While truck driver mistakes are the main cause of commercial truck collisions, there are many ways that trucking companies can be negligent and lead to a crash and serious injuries. The following are only some examples of negligence for which trucking companies may be held responsible.

Hiring Practices

Every trucking company should have a careful hiring system to ensure that they do not allow anyone who is unsafe or unqualified to operate their commercial trucks. Truck companies should always review a potential driver’s health records, driving record, criminal record, and qualifications such as a valid commercial driver’s license and any necessary endorsements for the job.

In many cases, a company may not thoroughly vet an applicant or may hire friends or family members despite negative facts. A company may be deemed negligent if they hire an unlicensed commercial driver, someone with a history of driving under the influence or other serious traffic violations, someone with serious and untreated health issues, or any other red flags that should indicate to a company that the driver will put motorists at risk of harm.

Insufficient Supervision or Discipline

As an employer, a trucking company should always stay aware of the actions of its employees. If a truck driver violates a regulation or law, the company should know through careful supervision and should take necessary disciplinary measures to prevent further danger in the future. For example, if a driver fails a drug or alcohol test or has been driving while impaired, a company should take immediate action to suspend the employee until they are sure the employee has received proper treatment.

If a driver is found to be violating hours of service regulations set out by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), a trucking company should keep close track of their time records to ensure that they do not continue to commit such violations. If a company failed to properly supervise or discipline drivers, it could be help liable for any accidents that result from dangerous employees.

Neglecting Trucks in the Fleet

Whether a trucking company has one truck or an entire fleet of trucks, the company has a duty to keep those trucks in safe and working condition. All trucks should be regularly inspected for any possible defects that may need to be repaired. If any defects exist, they should be fixed before the truck goes back out onto the road. In addition to repairs, regular maintenance must be performed to prevent any issues on the road.

If a truck has been poorly maintained and brake failure or a tire blowout causes a crash, many people can be seriously injured. The injured accident victims would be able to hold the trucking company liable for their losses.

Failing to Perform Required Alcohol or Drug Tests

Because driving a large commercial truck while impaired by drugs and alcohol is extraordinarily dangerous, the FMCSA strictly regulates all types of impaired commercial driving. One requirement is that trucking companies must regularly perform random alcohol and drug testing on drivers, either before or after their shifts. In addition, if a driver is in an accident that causes serious injury or damage, an alcohol and drug screening must be performed.

When trucking companies do not perform the necessary chemical tests, it can allow drivers with alcohol or drug issues to continue to drive while impaired and go undetected. If drivers know that their employers do not test, they may even be encouraged to push the envelope and drive while intoxicated.

Pushing Drivers to Violate FMCSA Regulations

In some circumstances, trucking companies have even encouraged drivers to violate certain regulations set out by the FMCSA. One common example is requesting that drivers make deliveries faster than they can while adhering to the hours of service regulations. If drivers are pushed to do so, they can become fatigued and can crash. In addition, companies may also create false records to make it appear as if their drivers comply when they truly are violating the law.

What To Do After A Semi-Truck Accident

Accidents involving large trucks injure thousands of people every year. In many cases, these wrecks are the result of negligence on the part of the truck driver or another party responsible for the truck or its cargo, meaning that victims are often entitled to compensation. A check does not get put in the mail automatically after an accident, however, and there are certain things that victims can do in order to maximize their chances of recovery, some of which are detailed below.

Do Not Apologize

While apologizing after an accident may seem like good manners, it is not a good idea to say you’re sorry after a car crash, as doing so can be interpreted as an admission of fault. After an accident, you should be polite, exchange information with the other drivers involved, and answer any questions that the police ask, but be sure not to say anything that could be taken as an apology.

Be Careful With Your Social Media Use

While involvement in a truck accident may seem social media-worthy, it is important to keep in mind that social media posts can affect the way that your case is resolved. For example, if you post pictures of yourself exercising, traveling, or engaging in other activities that could be seen as indicating that your injuries are not as severe as you are claiming, it could affect your settlement or award. Likewise, things you post about the way your accident occurred could inadvertently indicate that you were at fault for your accident.

See Your Doctor As Soon As You Can

You should always see your doctor as soon as possible after an accident. Waiting to do so may allow the insurance company to argue that your injuries were the result of an intervening cause rather than the accident itself.

Additionally, you should undergo a medical evaluation, even if you do not believe that your injuries warrant seeing a doctor. Doing so will ensure that your injuries are evaluated and that you start any necessary treatment as soon as possible. In addition, it will result in the generation of a medical record that may be useful when it comes to establishing causation and damages, both of which are essential parts of a truck accident case.

Call A Philly Truck Accident Lawyer

Truck accident litigation is complicated, and victims who do not retain legal counsel run the risk of accepting a settlement far below what their case is actually worth. They also might say or do something that could jeopardize their ability to recover at all. For this reason, anyone hurt in a truck accident should call a personal injury attorney soon as possible.

Should You Settle Your Truck Accident Claim?

Whether you should settle your truck accident claim will depend on a number of factors. Individuals involved in auto accidents tend to sustain much more serious and devastating injuries when trucks are involved in those accidents. More often than not, small passenger vehicles hardly stand a chance against large trucks and as a result, sustain more damage. If you or a loved one were involved in a truck accident, you are entitled to compensation for your injuries.

What Is A Settlement?

There are generally two types of settlements:

  • Lump-sum settlement – A lump sum settlement is one that is paid in full, all at once.
  • Structured settlement – A structured settlement is paid in regular, recurring payments spread over a period of time.

An experienced truck accident attorney will understand your needs and be able to evaluate which settlement is right for you. Your attorney will also help you determine whether settling is the best option for your unique case.

How Do I Get A Settlement?

A legal settlement is usually reached when the parties are able to arrive at an agreement outside of court. There are several methods that can be used by an attorney to settle your truck accident case. These methods include:

  • Arbitration
  • Mediation
  • Negotiation

Often, claims for damages that arise from a trucking accident can be settled. And in the event that a settlement is reached in your case, it is important to have an understanding of the types of settlements usually available to individuals involved in truck accidents. Below are some of the pros and cons of settling your truck accident claim:


  • Settling a claim is generally less expensive than going to court.
  • Settling a claim allows the parties to confidentially present their positions without admitting fault.
  • The parties are generally able to reach an amicable settlement agreement because they are able to discuss difficult issues calmly and rationally.


  • The injured party may end up settling their claim for much less than they would have been awarded if successful in court.
  • Usually, the injured party gives up their right to pursue any other legal claim in connection with the accident.

How Much Will I Get From My Settlement?

Determining the compensation you may be entitled after a truck accident is more difficult than most people imagine. This is because you may be entitled to more damages than simply physical injuries and property damage. Being in a truck accident can be devastating enough, and when you are the injured party in a passenger vehicle, the resulting injuries can be severe, which is why it is critical that an experienced personal injury attorney helps you navigate your legal options.

Calculating damages can be challenging, and the amount of your settlement will depend on many factors such as complexity of your case, the nature and severity of your injuries, and the amount of the claim. Other factors that can help determine the amount of the pain and suffering damages you may be entitled to include:

  • Any aggravating circumstances.
  • The length of time it took you to recover from your injuries.
  • Whether you were able to recover completely from your injuries.

When trying to determine the extent of the damages you are entitled to, it is important to also think about the following:

  • Lost income/wages
  • Present and future quality of life
  • Whether you have suffered permanent injuries
  • The extent of your property damage
  • Emotional stress
  • Potential to be gainfully employed

Philadelphia Office
Attorneys Gabriel Levin and John Mattiacci at The Levin Firm welcome the opportunity to meet and work with you.
Toll Free: 877.825.8542

Contact the Experienced Philadelphia Truck Accident Lawyers at The Levin Firm Personal Injury Lawyers Today

Philly Car Accident Attorney | Gabriel Levin

If you have suffered injury and related losses in an accident involving a large commercial truck, you always want to seek the assistance of an attorney who understands the complications in this type of case.

At the Levin Firm, our Philadelphia truck accident attorneys have the experience and resources necessary to hold truck drivers, trucking companies, and other relevant parties responsible for the injuries and damage caused in serious truck accidents.

We offer free, no-obligation consultations, so please do not hesitate to call our office today at 877-825-8542 for help today.






For more information and guidance as to your legal options regarding a Philadelphia truck accident, contact our experienced truck accident attorneys online or by calling (215) 825-5183.