Knoxville residents appreciate the city’s curbside garbage pickup and the efforts employees make to keep the city clean. However, drivers of the slow-moving, large-scale garbage trucks can cause considerable property damage and bodily injuries to motorists, pedestrians, and bicyclists when they become distracted or make incorrect maneuvers and cause an accident.
If you or your loved one suffered harm—or sustained fatal injuries—as a result of a garbage truck accident, the Law Offices of Ogle, Elrod & Baril, PLLC, can help you recover compensation for your financial losses. Call us today at 865-546-1111 to arrange a free, no-obligation consultation with a garbage truck accident lawyer in Knoxville. Whether your accident involved a garbage truck owned by a private Tennessee business or the City of Knoxville, we work hard to get you the compensation you deserve.
Why Do I Need a Lawyer for a Garbage Truck Accident?
You do not need to a lawyer to bring a case against a private company or the City of Knoxville. However, filing an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit against the city is not like filing a case against a private waste management company.
In many cases, Tennessee’s sovereign immunity laws prohibit an individual from suing a city, county, or state government for employees’ actions. However, in certain situations, the government may be liable for your damages. Our law firm knows what it takes to remove immunity in specific instances and hold a government responsible for certain injuries.
How Can I Hold a Government Entity Liable?
A government entity can be liable if its employees’ negligent actions, performed in the course of their employment, were the cause of someone else’s injuries. In your case, our firm would conduct an investigation to determine how the negligence of the city’s garbage truck driver caused the accident in which your injuries occurred. We may find that the garbage truck crash occurred due to:
- Driver fatigue;
- Distracted driving, if the driver was talking on the phone or sending text messages behind the wheel;
- Ignoring traffic signals or signs;
- Failing to drive according to bad weather conditions; or
- Lack of training in driving a commercial vehicle.
We may also find that the truck malfunctioned because of lack of maintenance or the accident could have occurred due to an overweight truck load. A number of factors may have contributed to your garbage truck accident. Our attorneys have the skills and resources to pinpoint the specific ones that played a role in your case.
We Must Prove Negligence to Recover Damages.
We use the evidence acquired from our investigation to prove negligence on the part of the city and its employees. To prevail in your claim, Tennessee requires us to prove the following four elements of negligence:
- The driver had a duty to carefully drive the garbage truck;
- The driver breached that duty;
- The driver’s’ negligence caused an accident; and
- You suffered actual damages because of the crash.
What Type of Damages Can I Pursue?
Once we prove negligence, you may pursue compensation for such damages as:
- Medical bills;
- Lost earnings;
- In-patient rehabilitation costs;
- Physical therapy;
- Assistive medical devices;
- Funeral costs, if a loved one died in the accident; and
- Pain and suffering.
Our attorneys will examine your medical bills, receipts, and other documentation to determine how much your claim is worth. Then, we will seek the maximum amount of compensation possible under state laws.
How Much Compensation Will I Receive?
The Governmental Tort Liability Act (GTLA) limits the amount of damages a government pays to accident victims. The GTLA limits liability to the following:
- $300,000 for the bodily injury or death of one person in one accident;
- $700,000 for bodily injuries or deaths of all people in one accident; and
- $100,000 for injury or destruction of property of others in one accident.
When Should I File a Claim?
You have one year from the accident to take legal action. The sooner you decide to take action, the quicker we can begin investigating your accident. We need time to access the police report of your accident, gather eyewitness statements about the crash, subpoena records, obtain any available video footage from traffic cameras, and collect other information.
Our legal team has decades of collective experience of helping accident victims receive compensation for their losses. We also assist in the complex process of filing insurance claims or personal injury lawsuits and negotiating with insurance adjusters and other parties to help our clients get the maximum compensation possible for their injuries.
Contact Us Today for a Free Consultation.
Call the Law Offices of Ogle, Elrod & Baril, PLLC, at 865-546-1111 to schedule a free case evaluation with our garbage truck accident lawyer in Knoxville. We work on a contingency fee basis, so you do not pay for our services unless we achieve a favorable outcome for your claim.