Yes, Werner Enterprises Inc. is one of the largest truckload carriers in the United States and it is growing at a rate of 3 to 5 percent each year. With a fleet of more than 7,800 trucks, Werner makes a yearly profit of more than $100 million. The trucking giant’s revenues in 2018 exceeded $2.4 billion. On average, its trucks have been involved in at least one fatal accident each month.
A young Werner truck driver did not pull off the road during horrible, freezing rain conditions on a U.S. Interstate Highway and a pickup truck moving in the opposite direction lost control and got slammed by the semi. A 7-year-old was killed and a 12-year-old was paralyzed.
The grief-stricken family filed a truck crash lawsuit against Werner and a Texas jury last year rendered an enormous verdict that the company has worked out with its insurance providers. The company denied fault, but in July 2018, the court entered a final judgment against Werner of $92 million.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a collision involving a Werner semi, contact a lawyer experienced in truck crash lawsuits. Fred Pritzker and Eric Hageman of Pritzker Hageman, P.A., represent clients who have won tens of millions of dollars from trucking companies and related firms — including companies that hire semi-trucks to move freight.
Werner truck drivers cover hundreds of millions of miles a year in 18-wheelers that dramatically outweigh passenger vehicles. Everyday motorists pay the price when the trucks operate unsafely. Most professional truck drivers are skilled and conscientious, but the highways are full of other truck drivers who pose a safety risk. They drive unsafe equipment, violate hours-on-duty regulations, drive while fatigued, roll at excessive speed, follow too closely or become distracted by cell phones or other vices.
The best advice for crash victims is to retain a lawyer quickly to build your case and demonstrate how the trucking company was at fault. By having an attorney document your case you can stand up to the freight hauling industry and claim what you deserve for compensation before company lawyers and insurance agents muddy up the waters. Congress is concerned about a rise in serious semi-truck collisions.
Werner Crash Data
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) regulates trucking firms and compiles data about crashes, equipment violations and unsafe driving. In a recent two year period, Werner trucks were involved in 26 deaths and 301 injuries, the agency reported. On average, that’s more than one fatal crash per month. In two year’s time, law enforcement officers had to summon tow trucks to the scenes of more than 700 crashes involving Werner drivers.
What’s more, DOT truck inspectors found equipment problems with Werner semi-trucks 12 percent of the time. Government inspectors also flagged .6 percent of Werner’s truck drivers for “out of service’’ violations during the same two-year period that ended June 24, 2019.
Based on a 24-month period ending May 31, 2019, the DOT recorded 70 driver fitness violations at Werner — including driving while suspended or driving while disqualified. In a separate category tallied by the DOT, more than 2,000 “unsafe driving violations’’ were counted against Werner. Those violations were speeding, reckless driving, speeding in a work zone, inattentive driving, following too close, improper lane change, improper turn, failure to use caution for hazardous conditions and driving while texting. These safety failures are grounds for a Werner trucking lawsuit when there are injuries or a death.
Building Your Case
Moving quickly to hire a lawyer is critical to preserving evidence that trucking companies have been known to destroy if they are not put on notice of your legal action. In law school terminology, it’s called a spoliation letter. It puts the trucking company on notice that a crash victim has a claim and that the company is responsible for preserving evidence that may be used in court.
A spoliation letter lists specific types of evidence that must be preserved. It’s a critical step taken routinely by Pritzker Hageman as the firm conducts its own independent analysis of semi-truck crashes.
Law enforcement officers at the scene of an accident are in a hurry and don’t have time to thoroughly investigate who was at fault. At times, officers will point the finger at the wrong party. Pritzker Hageman represented the family of a bicycle rider who was run over and killed by a semi-truck in Minnesota. Authorities blamed the cyclist, but detailed accident reconstruction by our firm discovered that it was the truck driver who was at fault. The case went to a jury and jurors sided with the victim’s family, awarding a verdict of more than $1 million.
Our semi-truck accident lawyers have won hundreds of millions of dollars for victims and their families. If you suffered the wrongful death of a loved one, you have the right to sue every person and company legally responsible for their death. Contact our legal team for a free consultation by filling out the form below, calling 1-888-377-8900, or texting 612-261-0856.