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Commercial Vehicle Accidents

Every year thousands of people are injured or killed in commercial vehicle accidents. Interstate highways are crowded with heavy-duty trucks hauling freight, moving vans crammed with housefuls of furniture, and large buses transporting people hundreds of miles. In urban areas, city buses, taxis, delivery trucks — even school buses — can clog the streets.

Call the NY commercial vehicle accident lawyers at EKJ Law

The New York car accident lawyers at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye understand the harm that commercial vehicles can inflict in crashes with pedestrians, cyclists, and other drivers. We have learned by experience that commercial vehicles can harm people and property far more seriously than can typical passenger cars. The size and weight of these vehicles makes them harder to maneuver and prolongs the process of braking and stopping. Many trucks haul hazardous or flammable materials, multiplying the likelihood and magnitude of harm in an accident.

By their nature commercial vehicles get extremely heavy use, as their owners cannot turn a profit unless the vehicle is in motion on the road. The wear and tear on these vehicles can be enormous — not to mention the potentially devastating impact on the drivers whose livelihood requires on-time arrivals despite fatigue, bad weather, highway backups and the like.

Given these dangers, it isn’t surprising that, nationwide, commercial vehicle crashes caused an estimated $87 billion worth of damages in 2011 alone.  According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, over 4,000 people died and 112,000 were seriously injured as a result of large truck and bus accidents. Such crashes also caused roughly $16 billion in damages to property.

At Edelman, Krasin & Jaye, we have decades of experience helping commercial vehicle crash victims recover for their losses. Our personal injury lawyers are experts in New York state law and experienced in courts across New York City and on Long Island.  We know how to work with people who have been injured or whose property has been damaged.  And we understand the sensitivity needed in cases when a family member has been killed in such an accident.

Types of commercial vehicle accidents

Just as many kinds of commercial vehicles crowd our streets and clog our highways, crashes involving such vehicles can occur in a wide array of locations and involve a variety of different laws and regulations. 

  • Large trucks — In 2012, over half a million truck companies were licensed to haul freight interstate.  Sleep-deprived drivers, excessive speed, mechanical failures and poor visibility, among other factors, killed 3,757 individuals and seriously injured an additional 88,000.  The vast majority of victims were outside the truck when they were killed or hurt. Over 200,000 truck crashes caused significant property damage.
  • Interstate buses — The U.S. Department of Transportation licensed some 12,000 companies to transport passengers across state lines in 2012.  These companies operate charter and tour buses as well as regular passenger services. In 2011, 24,000 people were seriously hurt in bus crashes nationwide; 283 were killed. Common causes of bus accidents include inadequate driver training and mechanical failures, among others.
  • City buses — Thousands of New York City residents rely on city bus service to get to school, work or other daily destinations. Brake, engine, steering or other mechanical failures can bring these routine daily trips to a terrifying end, as passengers, cyclists, pedestrians and other motorists are injured or killed by an out-of-control bus. Driver error, fatigue or substance abuse can also lead to tragic results. Edelman, Krasin & Jaye can help victims recover for their monetary and other losses by filing a NY motor vehicle accident lawsuit.
  • Taxis — The thousands of cabs on the streets of Manhattan and surrounding boroughs typically serve the daily transportation needs of New Yorkers and visitors alike.  If cab driver error causes a crash, however, the cab company may be liable for pain and suffering and emotional distress inflicted on persons injured in the accident and their families.
  • Intrastate hazardous material carriers — More than 15,000 companies across the country were licensed by the federal Department of Transportation in 2012 to haul hazardous materials within state boundaries. Toxic chemicals, radioactive materials, explosives and a host of other hazardous materials routinely traverse the roads and highways in New York and other states. When drivers are over-tired or poorly trained, or the company fails to follow vehicle safety requirements, the results can be horrific. Our experienced motor vehicle accident lawyers, who regularly appear in courts on Long Island and in New York City’s five boroughs, can help victims and families obtain compensation for their injuries.

New York motor vehicle crashes

In New York, commercial vehicles including large trucks and buses have caused thousands of accidents over the years.  The New York Department of Motor Vehicles reports that more than 10,000 large trucks crashed in the state in 2012. Over 4,800 people were injured, most of them seriously. Large truck accidents in the state killed 92 individuals, 93% of whom were pedestrians, cyclists, passengers, or drivers of another vehicle.

More than 4,000 New York school vehicles, including buses and vans, crashed in 2012. Of the 1,700 serious injuries that resulted, more than 60% were sustained by people other than the bus or van driver.

Because bystanders, pedestrians and other drivers are so much more likely to be killed or injured in New York commercial vehicle accidents, legal representation is particularly important for victims and their families in this state. Big corporations can and do fight aggressively when individuals seek compensation for their injuries, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Insurance companies have a business incentive to delay and deny in order to avoid compensating victims of commercial vehicle crashes.

NY auto accident attorneys at EKJ Law can help

Our personal injury attorneys know how to use New York law and procedure to help victims level the playing field. When we handle the case, large companies and their insurers often choose to settle out of court, giving victims full payment for their losses. If a trial is necessary, our decades of experience help families obtain the compensation they deserve.

If you or a family member has been injured in a commercial vehicle accident in New York City or on Long Island, please consult one of our expert attorneys by calling (800) 469-7429 or (516) 742-9200. We provide an initial consultation at no charge and without any obligation on your part. When we represent you in a personal injury lawsuit in NY, we do our utmost to obtain everything you deserve in compensation — because our client’s success is our success.

  1. US Dept. of Transportation, Overview http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/facts-research/art.htm
  2. US Dept. of Transportaion, Large Truck Overview, http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/facts-research/LTCO2011/2011LargeTruckCrashOverview.aspx
  3. US DOT, Commercial Vehicle Facts, http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/documents/facts-research/CMV-Facts.pdf
  4. Department of Motor Vehicles, Statistical Summaries, http://www.dmv.ny.gov/stats.htm
  5. DMV, Summary of Large Truck Crashes, http://www.dmv.ny.gov/Statistics/2012LargeTruckCrashSummary.pdf