Tow trucks provide essential services for people involved in collisions that disable their vehicles, drivers whose cars break down mid-trip, and business owners and municipalities who need to move an illegally parked or impounded car. Unfortunately, it is not unheard of for tow truck drivers heading towards a disabled car or carrying one to a repair shop to get involved in accidents themselves, some of which may cause extensive damage to both personal property and people.
Tow truck accidents in Chattanooga can make for uniquely complicated civil claims, which makes retaining a skilled truck crash attorney especially important in this kind of situation. In addition to helping you prove liability for the damages a negligent towing company or truck driver caused you to sustain, knowledgeable legal counsel could also play a key role in maximizing your available compensation while mitigating the impact that common legal obstacles may have on your recovery efforts.
Like most other commercial truck drivers, tow truck drivers in Tennessee who operate vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating more than 26,000 pounds must have a valid commercial driver’s license in order to legally perform their job. Even tow truck drivers who operate smaller vehicles still must have a state-issued driver’s license in good standing, which—as it does for all licensed drivers—imposes a legal duty on its holder to act reasonably around other people and obey all applicable traffic regulations while driving.
A tow truck driver who directly causes a crash to occur by exceeding the speed limit, running a red light, driving while distracted or intoxicated, or violating this “duty” through any other reckless or careless action could be considered legally “negligent.” A person who causes physical injury through their own negligence may then be held financially responsible for any and all consequences of that injury.
Importantly, though, it is not always necessary to file suit solely against an individual tow truck driver after a tow truck accident in Chattanooga. For example, tow truck companies may bear vicarious liability in many cases for negligence by their employee, and sometimes these companies even bear direct liability for a wreck thanks to their failure to provide proper training for their drivers or maintain safe hiring practices.
Through a successful civil lawsuit or settlement demand, a local attorney could help an accident victim recover for all economic and non-economic repercussions that the incident has for them, including:
As with most other forms of personal injury litigation in Chattanooga, though, a statute of limitations applies to tow truck crash claims that restrict the amount of time prospective plaintiffs have to file suit. Specifically, Tennessee Code §28-3-104 sets this deadline at one year after a particular accident victim actually sustains harm from another person’s negligence, or sometimes one year after they discover their injuries through reasonable diligence.
No matter what specific actions by a tow truck driver lead to an accident occurring, you could potentially demand compensation from them or their employer if those actions constituted legal negligence. However, proving that fact and demanding fair restitution for all available damages can be exceptionally challenging to manage within the short window of time you have to file suit, especially if you proceed without guidance from a seasoned legal professional.
Working with a capable lawyer is often essential to achieving case success following a tow truck accident in Chattanooga. Learn more by calling today.