How Garbage Truck Accident Cases Work
Garbage trucks perform the vital service of removing waste from our homes. However, they can be extremely dangerous for pedestrians, bicyclists and drivers of passenger vehicles that may cross their path. The size of a garbage truck is the main hazard, as it can be very difficult for the driver to completely see all of his or her surroundings. This is particularly true when a garbage truck is in a confined space, such as an alley.
These vehicles also must make continuous starts and stops, and may have to back up frequently. Children or other pedestrians are at a particularly high risk when a garbage truck is near because the driver's view is often obstructed.
Accidents involving a garbage truck, like most other large trucks, often result in very serious injuries to pedestrians and motorists alike. Whether the garbage truck involved in your accident was owned by a private entity or by an individual city in Texas, you may be able to seek compensation for your injury. If you or a loved one has been injured in this type of accident, this article will explain how you can take legal action in order to obtain fair compensation.
Questions Answered on This Page:
- What are some causes of garbage truck accidents?
- Is a city liable for garbage truck accidents?
- Is the city required to pay for my injuries?
- Is there a limit for the amount of compensation you can receive?
Causes of Garbage Truck Accidents
A significant number of garbage truck accidents happen by falling debris, rear-end collisions, unexpected stops, driving in the wrong lane, illegal lane changes, head-on collisions, and even loose garbage truck wheels and/or tires. The list goes on and on:
- Trucks backing up without warning alarms
- Trucks backing up without the driver checking behind the truck
- Manufacturer defects in the truck or equipment
- Failure to stop at a stop sign or red light
- Failure to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks
- Distracted drivers
Suing A City
Every city's charter will have a few differences about filing deadlines and that kind of thing, but fundamentally, most cities will be be the same. Residential trash in Dallas, for example, is collected by trucks owned by the city. Private companies are used to haul commercial trash, including waste from apartment complexes.
If your accident involved a Dallas-owned garbage truck, taking legal action against the City of Dallas works in a vastly different manner than action taken against a private entity. It used to be impossible to sue the government on any level - city, state or federal. In Texas, that all changed in 1969 with the passage of the Texas Tort Claims Act by the state legislature. While this act allows a company or person to sue a governmental entity such as the City of Dallas, there are also caps, or limits, on the amount of compensation that can be awarded. For example, there is a cap of 100,000 per person or 300,000 per incident in accidents involving city-owned motor vehicles.
While the Texas Tort Claims Act was a major step toward holding governmental agencies responsible for their actions just as all other people and entities, it can still be incredibly complex to obtain compensation, and very hard to hold the City of Dallas responsible for negligence. In other words, the city does not have to pay you anything; in order to have any reasonable chance of winning you will need the help of an experienced commercial truck accident attorney.
Taking legal action
To say the window of opportunity is small for suing a city would be an incredible understatement. Most city charters require a person taking legal action against the city to file notice within 180 days.
It is much more difficult to win a case against a city without the help of a skilled and experienced attorney. At Grossman Law Offices, our attorneys have handled many of these kinds of cases over the past 25 years, helping numerous clients secure equitable restitution. If you would like to speak with us, please call us at anytime: (855) 326-0000 .
Related Articles for Further Reading:
- Common Causes of Truck Accidents: Driver Fatigue
- How Do Different Types of Commercial Insurance Affect Your Truck Accident Case?
- Gathering Evidence in an 18-Wheeler Accident Case