Overloaded/Overweight Truck Accidents in Banning

Overloaded/overweight truck accidents in Banning can lead to catastrophic injuries due to the size and weight of the vehicle. These injuries are sometimes life-threatening and often leave victims burdened with hefty medical expenses.

When you are hurt in an accident involving an overweight truck, you could potentially pursue a personal injury lawsuit for negligence. A seasoned truck crash attorney at Walter Clark Legal Group is ready to discuss the details of your case with you.

Overweight Trucks Violate State Traffic Laws

Driving an overloaded or overweight truck in Banning increases the risk of an accident. To avoid these risks, commercial vehicles have a manufacturer’s gross vehicle weight rating, known as a GVWR.

Operating an overweight truck can cause brake or steering issues, blown-out tires, and rollover incidents. Further, an overweight truck is more likely to have problems securing its cargo, which could fall on the road and cause a wreck.

State law requires that commercial truck drivers stop at a weigh station to inspect their size and weight, according to California Vehicle Code § 2813. Failing to stop at a highway weigh station location when required is a misdemeanor offense.

The state imposes weight limits on commercial trucks to help avoid the hazards of an overloaded vehicle. As a general rule, Cal Veh. Code § 35550 limits the weight on any one axle to a maximum of 20,000 pounds and the gross weight on any one wheel supporting an axle at 10,500 pounds. These weight limits adjust depending on the number of axles on the particular vehicle.

Penalties for overloaded trucks include fines that vary depending on how much weight the vehicle exceeds the legal limit under Cal. Veh. Code § 42030.

An Overloaded Truck Can Help Prove Negligence

Evidence that a truck was overweight or overloaded in Banning can help prove that a crash was caused by negligence. Under California Civil Code § 1714, individuals are responsible for their willful or unintentional actions that cause injuries to another person when failing to use reasonable care.

To prove negligence, the truck accident victim must first establish that the allegedly responsible party had a duty of care. Additionally, the responsible party must have breached this duty. The plaintiff must also prove the breach was the proximate cause of their harm. Lastly, the breach must cause actual damages.

Proof that a truck was overweight can help establish per se negligence under California Evidence Code § 669. The law states that a person is presumed to have failed to exercise reasonable care if they violate a state law and the violation results in another person’s injury or death. The injury must result from the nature of the activity the particular law was designed to prevent.

Recoverable Damages

An injured plaintiff can pursue economic and non-economic damages through a negligence lawsuit. Economic damages cover measurable costs, such as medical expenses, lost wages, and property damage.

Non-economic damages—such as pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of consortium with a spouse—are harder to quantify. If the defendant acted intentionally or with extreme recklessness, Cal. Civ. Code § 3294 also permits an injured victim to pursue exemplary damages.

Additionally, California Proposition 213 could impact accidents involving uninsured drivers. The law generally prohibits an uninsured driver from pursuing non-economic damages.

An Injured Victim Could Also Sue the Truck Driver’s Employer

In many cases, an injured victim can file a lawsuit against a commercial truck driver’s employer to recover damages for an accident due to excessive weight in Banning. Trucking companies are required to maintain insurance for their commercial vehicles.

Under the doctrine of respondeat superior, codified in Cal. Civ. Code § 2338, the state holds employers strictly liable for injuries caused by their employees while performing their normal job function. Strict liability will depend on several factors, including the nature of the employer’s relationship with the driver.

For example, employers are generally not liable for the actions of third-party contractors. The court’s strict liability analysis will usually focus on how much control the employer can exercise over the employee.

Contact a Banning Attorney Immediately After an Overloaded/Overweight Truck Crash

You should speak to a lawyer as soon as possible when you or a loved one are injured in an overloaded/overweight truck accident in Banning.  It is important to file your lawsuit in a timely manner to meet state filing deadlines.

Schedule a free consultation with a qualified legal professional at Walter Clark Legal Group to discuss the specifics of your case.

Walter Clark Legal Group

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