What do you do if you’re injured by in a hit and run tractor-trailer accident? Well, there are a number of things you need to do. One is keep the company name down. Write that down so you know, “It was a Swift, it was a CRST, it was a C.R. England type of tractor-trailer.” Two, see what numbers you can get off the back of the vehicle. See if you can get the “1-800-How’s my driving?” number. See if you can get the license plate number. What other in this do you have? If you can keep going, go follow that vehicle, catch up to it and get what you can about it. Call the police. Call 911. Advise them that you’ve just been in an incident. That vehicle is leaving and that they need to be attended to.
I was on the roadway literally yesterday, and a trash truck was dumping all this stuff on the roadway. I didn’t call the 911, but I called the local officers, and I said, “Hey (I won’t say the name of the company), there was a trash truck dumping all kinds of stuff. Can you guys tell that company not to do that? And someone needs to pick up the debris on the roadway. That’s dangerous.” So, do those things. Try to identify the vehicle that you’re doing. I have a client. We’re trying to settle the case now where the truck actually did a U-Turn on the roadway and it tossed her to skid and hit a guardrail. After she got her senses, she went and followed, got off an exit, went safely, came back around, went down, found that truck at a stop down the road, wrote down her information and then made a claim. So, try to track down that liable driver. Don’t go to too great a length that you put yourself in any danger to do so. You don’t want to be going 90 miles an hour trying to do it because you’re going to cause more damage to yourself. If you can’t get any of that information, at least get the name of the trucking company because we can call them and say, “Hey listen. There was a tractor-trailer at Milepost X on Roadway Y at Z Time, and they caused an injury.” And these tractor-trailer companies dispatch their vehicles with GPS. They know exactly who was when, where, how, so we can track that down also to try to find the liable driver and the company, and then we make a claim against them.
We try to get 100% of your compensation, your medical expenses, your wage loss damages, pain and suffering, disability, whatever the damage to your vehicle was. There are many occasions where commercial truck drivers and 50,000 to 70,000-pound vehicles break the rules of the road and injure or kill people, and I’ve had many cases and helped a lot of people recover from them. But, there are also good responsible trucking companies that want to be safe on the roadways, that are required by federal and state law to do that, and they want to be responsible. They want to own up and stand up to their obligations and good for them because that’s what you ought to be doing. You’re required to do it by law, and we shouldn’t be only defined by the bad actors in our industries. I mean I am plaintiffs’ lawyer, Gary Burger of Burger Law. In the media plaintiffs’ lawyers are portrayed badly, and plaintiffs, injured people are portrayed badly, and there’s this dim view of that in some corners of America. But, just like those plaintiffs or those plaintiffs’ lawyers shouldn’t define me or my industry, bad truck drivers shouldn’t define the whole truck driving industry too.
I don’t want me to get too far off-point, but the point is that when we do contact these trucking companies, many times they do stand up and say, “You know what, we did have a driver there. We’ll contact him. He will do it. You know what, we’re not going to dispute this. We’re not agreeing to it, but we’re not going to dispute that you were injured. Here’s what we’re going to offer to settle this case. Thanks for contacting us. We want to have a good reputation in our community because we’re comprised of our community. I mean our truck drivers may be your neighbors, and we want to have that reputation.” So, get what information you can, anything identifying. Write it down. You’ll forget it later. Communicate it to the police or whoever’s reporting the incident. Get a police report. Then, contact me if you’d like, (314) 648-8348, and we’ll be able to make a hit and run truck accident claim for you. Thank you.