Accidents

Auto Accidents

If you have been involved in a Texas automobile accident or traffic collision you may be entitled to compensation by the negligent party’s insurance company and/or your own if the negligent driver was uninsured or under insured. Never proceed with a negligence claim without first obtaining legal advice.

THINGS YOU SHOULD DO IF YOU ARE IN AN AUTO ACCIDENT:

  • Insist that a report be filed with the police, sheriff or highway patrol.
  • Obtain the name, address, insurance information, vehicle license number and driver’s license number of any and all other persons involved in the accident.
  • Also get the names, addresses and telephone numbers of all witnesses.
  • Photograph the accident scene, including all vehicles involved (before repairing) and any visible injuries (cuts, bruises).
  • Talk to no one about the accident or injuries other than your doctor or lawyer, especially not an insurance adjuster. You should however cooperate with the police, or any law enforcement investigating the accident, and you should report the collision to your own insurance carrier immediately.
  • Sign nothing without consulting an attorney. Truthful statements made in an attempt to be helpful can easily be misinterpreted and turned against you.
  • Seek medical attention and tell your physician or surgeon exactly how the injury occurred and describe all symptoms and complaints.

Bicycle Accidents

Bicycling is a popular alternative to driving a motor vehicle in Austin as well as being a great outdoor activity for many individuals and families. Generally, the same traffic laws apply to both bikes and cars. However, there are some differences. In Austin a bicycle may be ridden on the sidewalk in most places. Bicycles cannot be ridden on some sidewalks downtown.

The Austin Bicycle Law lists the streets where bikes cannot be ridden on the sidewalk. When you click on this link, choose to view the City Ordinances with frames. Click on Title 12, Transportation, and go to 12-2: Bicycle Regulations. Section 12-2-13 is the section which says that bicycles can ride on the sidewalk, except in certain areas. Austin also requires children under age 18 to wear a helmet. (Section 12-2-31)

While most of the bicycle injury cases we handle involve bicyclists being hit by cars, bicycle riders can be injured by dangerous conditions in the road or street. For example, a bike rider may be hurt by hitting a slick spot caused by overwatering of a lawn or landscaped common area. We have seen cases where overwatering was so chronic, that the street was actually slick with green moss. Other obstructions left in the roadway can also pose a danger for bike riders. Unlit or unmarked construction equipment, unmarked trenches or holes left by construction crews can also pose extreme dangers to bike riders.

If you or a loved one has suffered damages or injury in a bicycle accident that has resulted from a negligent driver, or person leaving dangerous conditions in the road or street, call us for a free initial consultation. We may be able to help you get compensated for your injury or damage.

Trucking Accidents

Large trucks, also called semis, 18-wheelers or tractor-trailers intimidate many drivers of smaller cars, and for good reason. Because large trucks are so much heavier and longer than a passenger car or truck, they can bring many times the force of a smaller vehicle to bear on the other vehicles in an accident. That means that in a crash between a large truck and a family vehicle, the smaller car or truck will almost always be crushed by the sheer force of the truck’s weight and speed. For the occupants of the smaller car, the result is likely to be death or permanent disability from a serious head, spine or internal injury.

Compounding this problem is the reality that drivers and trucking companies don’t always respect safety laws. Because large trucks can be so dangerous, Federal and Texas state laws set special licensing rules for their drivers and strictly regulate how often they may drive. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration issues regulations for drivers and regulations for trucks.

In Texas, the Texas Department  of Transportation has rules for truckers and their equipment. Unfortunately, these regulations are often ignored by companies and drivers more interested in making a profit than public safety.

Dangerous Truck Drivers

Death and injuries happen when truck drivers:

  • Drive too many hours and fall asleep at the wheel, or make driving mistakes because they are tired.
  • Drive trucks that are not properly maintained and have defective tires, brakes, shifting loads and other dangerous conditions.
  • Drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

According to the Federal Department of Transportation, large trucks accounted for just a small percent of registered vehicles traveling our roadways, but were involved in a high percent of traffic fatalities. Worse, the majority of those deaths, were sustained by occupants of the smaller vehicles.

Highway crashes are a catastrophe for most drivers, but for trucking companies, they’re just a part of doing business. Victims should contact an experienced Austin truck crash lawyer from to protect their legal rights.