Driving while impaired by alcohol or any other intoxicating substance dramatically improves the odds of a traffic accident occurring. The damage this decision can cause becomes much more substantial when you are operating a commercial tractor-trailer weighing up to 80,000 pounds. Unfortunately, it is far from uncommon for substance-impaired truckers to hit the road and put others’ lives at risk.
If you have been injured in a drunk driving truck accident in Orangeburg, you may have grounds to pursue civil compensation from the truck driver who hit you and even the company that employs them. These kinds of cases can be complicated in both legal and practical terms, so having help from a seasoned truck accident attorney could be vital to achieving a favorable outcome.
Can Drunk Driving Charge Be the Basis for a Civil Lawsuit?
The legal justification for virtually every truck accident civil claim is “negligence”—in other words, an individual or company’s specific careless, reckless, and/or illegal act that directly caused an otherwise preventable accident. Since drunk driving is against the law, any truck driver ticketed for DUI in the aftermath of a truck accident in Orangeburg is very likely liable for the wreck based on their drunk driving.
In fact, the standards for drunk driving are even harsher for truck drivers than they are for most commuter car drivers. The legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit for commercial drivers is 0.04 percent as opposed to the usual 0.08 percent. This means that it may be possible to pursue legal action against a truck driver for causing injury by drunk driving even under circumstances where a typical commuter car driver would not have been considered impaired.
Recovering for All Available Damages
Both economic and non-economic losses can be incorporated into a comprehensive lawsuit or settlement demand built around a drunk driving truck crash in Orangeburg. Economic losses typically center around past and expected future medical expenses for accident-related injuries, but various other out-of-pocket financial losses can be factored into a claim as well. These may include lost short-term work income, lost long-term earning capacity, vehicle repair/replacement costs, and disability-related costs for things like assistive equipment and home/vehicle modifications.
Non-economic losses typically center around the physical pain associated with accident-related injuries, but can also include various forms of psychological and emotional suffering, including lost consortium and lost overall enjoyment of life. Additionally, if a court finds that a truck driver engaged in extremely egregious negligence by driving with a very high BAC, that court may impose additional “punitive damages” up to a maximum of $500,000 or three times the combined value of economic and non-economic damages, whichever is greater.
No matter what specific losses this sort of wreck led to or how long those losses are expected to last, state law usually grants prospective plaintiffs just three years after a collision to file suit. This task may be much easier with a capable legal professional’s guidance.
Seek Help From an Orangeburg Attorney With a Drunk Driving Truck Accident Claim
Drunk driving is a textbook example of negligent behavior, which could serve as grounds for a civil claim when someone gets hurt. That being said, getting the best possible resolution from this sort of case can be far from simple, especially if you are trying to obtain compensation from a massive trucking company operating across multiple states.
Help is available after drunk driving truck accidents in Orangeburg from a tenacious attorney. Call today to schedule a consultation.