Were you or a loved one injured by a truck driver who should never have been behind the wheel?
1 Glenlake Pkwy NE
Atlanta, GA 30328
***By appointment only***
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Many drivers cringe when they pass a tractor-trailer, semi or big rig on the highway, simply because it’s so much bigger than the average family vehicle. In fact, semi-trucks aren’t just bigger—they’re much more complicated machines, with a staggering weight and length that makes them especially deadly in the event of a crash. Driving a tractor-trailer or commercial truck is a serious responsibility that requires extensive training and certifications to receive a special commercial driver’s license.
Truck driver training and certification is important for not only the safety of the truck drivers, but also society at large. Just like all drivers must pass a test and practice before they get behind the wheel of a passenger vehicle, so must truck drivers (and the companies that employ them) ensure that operators are properly trained and licensed before getting behind the wheel of a big rig.
Unfortunately, there are trucking companies out there that prefer to save money by hiring people without the proper training, or by ignoring any need for training that might arise later.
Such carelessness and reckless disregard for a community’s safety can and does have deadly consequences — not just in Atlanta and the state of Georgia, but nationwide.
We’ve represented trucking accident victims and their families in Metro Atlanta and throughout the state of Georgia for more than 20 years. We’ve won strong financial recoveries for our clients. To discuss your situation and find out how we can help you, contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation at 1 of our 4 offices in DeKalb, Fulton and Gwinnett counties.
We’ve recovered over $75 million for our clients
Trucking companies and their lawyers are trying to get everything they can to use against you in the case.
The trucking companies are one step ahead… to manipulate the evidence in their favor. Even if their driver has gotten the ticket for the wreck, they are going to present evidence circumstantial or otherwise to make it your fault and you need to be aware.
Because trucking accidents are so different from auto accidents, you really need to talk to a professional about your rights.
Contact us to speak with a lawyer about your accident.We’re available 24/7 and your first consultation is free.
Call 866-972-5287 or send us a message online
Back on the Road
What to do after a serious semi, tractor trailer or truck accident in Georgia
Guidebook for people who suffered a serious injury or lost a loved one after a bad accident with a large commercial truck
When inadequate truck driver training becomes negligence
When a trucking company gives someone the keys to an 18-wheeler, it’s always taking a risk that the driver might cause a crash. Under Georgia law, employers are liable for the damages and injuries caused when their employees cause an accident while doing their jobs. However, when the trucking company gives those keys to someone who isn’t properly trained to drive a truck in the first place, this is known as “negligence.”
There are many federal and state regulations that cover the training required for those driving large commercial vehicles and long combination vehicles (LCVs). Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations require training and certification for drivers behind the wheel of these vehicles.
Examples of improper and inadequate training that commonly leads to truck crashes include:
- Hiring someone with no training to drive a truck at all
- Holding the wrong kind of commercial driver’s license for the truck being driven
- Not having a special endorsement for certain situations like double trailers, hazmat transport or a tanker truck
- Driving despite a commercial driver’s license being revoked
- Operating a big rig despite restriction on driver’s license that forbids it
- Hiring a driver with a bad or suspicious safety record
Georgia trucking laws and federal regulations
Under the FMCSA Code of Federal Regulations, the requirements for both truck drivers and operators regarding proper training and certification is laid out in detail. These regulations not only establish the training required, they also establish testing requirements and the proper administration of testing by qualified instructors, especially with regard to interstate LCV and commercial vehicle operation. Aspects of this training include safe evasive maneuvers to avoid accidents, how to safely carry hazardous materials and many other aspects of safe driving.
According to FMCSA regulations (49 CFR § 383.5(1)), a commercial vehicle is defined as a motor vehicle with:
. . . a gross combination weight rating or gross combination weight of 11,794 kilograms or more (26,001 pounds or more), whichever is greater, inclusive of a towed unit(s) with a gross vehicle weight rating or gross vehicle weight of more than 4,536 kilograms (10,000 pounds), whichever is greater.
In addition, Georgia defines (O.C.G.A. 40-5-142) a commercial motor vehicle as a “motor vehicle designed or used to transport passengers or property” if:
- The vehicle has a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 or more pounds or such lesser rating as determined by federal regulation
- The vehicle is designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the driver; or
- The vehicle is transporting hazardous materials.
Truck drivers must apply for a commercial license (CDL) in order to operate a commercial vehicle legally in the state. To apply for a CDL in Georgia, drivers must be at least 18 years of age, possess a valid regular driver’s license, complete a CDL application and pay a fee, pass a vision exam, apply for a Class AP or BP Instructional Permit, pass a written exam and pass a road skills test — among other things. Additional steps may be required to receive a hazmat endorsement.
How Scholle Law fights for truck accident victims
Trucking accidents can be very serious. The mismatch in size and weight between a semi and an ordinary vehicle means that no matter who is at fault, the passenger and their vehicle will suffer most of the damage. Truck accidents commonly result in death or catastrophic injuries.
As a result, there’s a lot to deal with after a truck accident. You may be experiencing physical pain, grief, learning how to live with a disability, steep medical bills and worries about money. On top of that, the trucking company’s insurer may keep calling you, asking you to agree to things you don’t believe are true or sign documents that you don’t understand.
For more than 20 years, we have made motor vehicle and truck crashes the biggest part of our legal practice. As a result, we understand the rights of Georgia residents who’ve been in serious accidents, and we know how to maximize your financial recovery. Scholle Law can help you by:
- Negotiating with the insurance companies to secure the best possible settlement
- Explaining in plain language what you can expect if you decide to sue
- Advising you on how to avoid common mistakes that might limit your financial recovery
- Investigating the accident and its causes thoroughly
- Calculating proper values for your past and future medical bills, lost earnings, injuries, pain and more
- Helping you sort out how much you might owe to a health insurance company, Medicare or Medicaid