If you've been injured in an accident involving a tow truck, or by the negligent loading or unloading of a tow truck, you might be entitled to compensation from the tow truck driver and their employer. Additionally, if you are a tow truck operator injured due to defective equipment or lack of maintenance of the tow truck, you may be able to pursue legal action.
At the Law Firm of Michael J. Redenburg, Esq, PC, we understand the laws that govern all motor vehicle accidents and Tow Truck Accidents. Our highly trained and experienced legal team has a proven track record of success in handling auto accidents and we know about highway safety.
About 500,000 truck accidents occur in the US each year and a large amount involve tow trucks. When the tow truck itself may be the cause of a crash, they can also be caused by collisions or from improperly secured vehicles. Equipment can fail, such as faulty tires.
If an accident is due to the tow truck driver's negligence or the tow truck company causing property damage or personal injury, victims need help from a Manhattan tow truck accident attorney to ensure they are properly compensated for their injuries. Alternatively, a tow truck driver may be involved in a wreck due to the tow truck company's negligence.
Causes of Tow Truck Accidents
When an accident occurs with a loaded tow truck on a busy roadway or causeway, the outcome is often catastrophic. You my have seen speeding tow trucks running red lights– with their lights flashing—racing to be first at the scene of an accident. It's ironic that a tow truck driver demonstrates reckless driving and potentially creates another driving hazard, or even worse, another vehicular accident. One reason why tow trucks are involved in so many accidents is because the more tows that drivers get, the more money they can make.
Some of the most common tow truck accidents are caused by:
- Reckless Driving to be first on the scene;
- Speeding to be first on the scene;
- Running red lights to get to the crash scene first;
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs;
- Not properly securing the vehicle being towed.
Many of the accidents involving tow trucks—and flatbed tow trucks in particular– are directly connected to the type of cargo they are towing. These loads can make the truck unstable by creating a high center of gravity, the tendency to shift forward or side-to-side, or becoming loose and falling to the ground. If that load is a severely damaged car, pieces of the vehicle might come off during travel and fall off the tow truck or flat bed. This could cause severe injuries to pedestrians or drivers, or it may cause drivers to crash while trying to avoid the debris.
Tow Truck Liability Insurance
If a tow truck is involved in interstate trucking, they must carry a minimum of $750,000 in insurance. If the tow truck involved in your accident is operating intrastate, both state and local county ordinances may apply. Most operators carry anywhere from $300,000 to $500,000 per incident in liability coverage.
What You Should Do
Getting into an accident with a tow truck can be stressful and scary, to say the least, making it easy to forget important things you should do at the scene. Try to do the following:
- Stay Calm
- Check for injuries
- Move out of traffic lanes, if you can do so safely
- Call 911
- Take down any information from eyewitnesses
- Take photos of vehicles involved and the scene – if you can do safely.
- Collect all information of the tow truck driver's permit- it should be displayed on the side of their tow vehicle
- After the police give you an incident report, call a tow truck accident lawyer
We thoroughly investigate the scene of the accident, the tow truck operator, the towing company, and the manufacturer of any failed equipment to make certain we hold every responsible party liable for their actions. Contact our office as soon as possible after the accident. Timeliness is important and will ensure that you don't miss any deadlines to file your claim, or lose evidence or witness information related to the accident. We want you to receive the largest settlement possible for you!