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If you or a family member have been involved in a lorry accident, it is imperative that you talk to a solicitor if you wish to pursue a claim.Tell Us About Your Case
While all traffic collisions are traumatic for the people involved, those involving lorries and heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) can be especially so for the drivers of these vehicles as well as other road users. In cases where you are involved in a crash that was not your fault, there may be a legal remedy. You can seek this legal remedy by way of a lorry accident claim.
Heavy Goods Vehicles are defined as goods vehicles with a maximum gross weight of more than 3.5 tons. Because of the weight of these large vehicles, road accidents involving HGVs are more serious than other types of accidents. Buses and coaches are included since they are usually quite large. Accidents involving HGVs tend to be very forceful collisions which can result in higher levels of damage to the vehicles and more serious injuries being sustained to anyone involved. Due to the substantial growth in online shopping in recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of delivery trucks and HGVs on Irish roads.
One of the main factors present in many road traffic accidents is driver fatigue. Driver fatigue or tiredness can cause the driver of a vehicle to lose concentration, or worse, fall asleep at the wheel of their vehicle while driving on the road. This factor is even more prominent when it comes to operating a HGV as many lorry drivers encounter long hauls daily.
For this reason, the EU introduced strict regulations on the driving time (hours) of professional driving operating vehicles over 3.5 tons, including trailers, and passenger vehicles with more than 8 passenger seats onboard. Every HGV is required to have a tachograph installed on their vehicle. This device automatically records the speed, distance and time the driver has covered.
The key requirements for drivers of HGV’s are as follows:
For further information on the European Union rules on drivers’ hours, visit the RSA’s guide by clicking here.
The most common lorry accident claims are:
Following an accident involving a HGV, whether as a driver, passenger, pedestrian or cyclist there are several steps you should follow:
Your health is your wealth and should be your first priority. Immediately after a lorry accident, take a second to assess yourself to determine if you have any injuries. Then check if any passengers or anybody else involved in the accident need medical attention. If you or anyone else involved has sustained a serious injury ensure that you contact an ambulance to attend the scene.
For minor injuries, you must remember that minor injuries where you ‘feel fine’ could progress to a more serious injury in the future. In this case it is always better to be safe than sorry and advisable that you go to your nearest accident and emergency (A&E) or local GP to be checked out.
It is important that you collect all the relevant information in connection with your accident:
Regardless of how minor or serious the lorry accident was, it is important that you call the Gardaí to report the accident immediately.
For minor accidents, the Gardaí may tell you that they will not be attending the scene. It may be a case where you can settle the issue yourself. In this scenario, the appropriate information should be exchanged. In these cases, it is also important that you visit your nearest Garda station to request that they take details of the accident and to take your statement about the accident.
For more serious lorry accidents, where an ambulance has been called, the Gardaí may arrive at the scene to assess, take statements from the people involved and any witnesses.
If you are the driver of the vehicle involved in a lorry accident or a passenger onboard it is important to inform the lorry company so they have a record of the accident.
If you are considering moving forward with a lorry accident claim for any personal injuries sustained it is advisable that you speak with a lorry accident claims solicitor as soon as possible. If you are proceeding with a claim, the first step will be submitting your claim to the Injuries Board for assessment. A lorry accident solicitor can help you in preparing your application to the Injuries Board and ensure that you follow the process in the correct format, meaning that you can move forward with your claim quickly without unnecessary delays.
It is important to remember to keep copies of any expenses that you have incurred as a result of the accident. It is also imperative to retain copies of medical reports or Garda reports, where possible as you will need them when making a claim.
Once you have gathered all the relevant information in relation to your injury it is then time to move forward with your claim. It is important to use a specialist lorry accident solicitor to help you with this.
When you decide you want to move forward with your lorry accident claim it is important to have all the relevant information to hand when contacting a solicitor. Important information to have on hand at this point is:
As a solicitor is aware of the lorry accident claim process they can avoid any legal bumps in the road you might encounter if you did this yourself. It is their job to be your trusted advisor on all legal matters throughout your case.
One of the most important documents in your case is a medical report. Your solicitor will ask for your doctor’s or hospital details so he can obtain a report on your injuries. This report will then be used to allow us progress your case.
As soon as your solicitor has gathered all the information, your lorry accident claim will be submitted to the Personal Injuries Assessment Board for assessment. You solicitor will do this for you. Once the Injuries Board assess your claim your solicitor will revert with a suggested settlement amount. At this stage you have a choice to accept the Injuries Board assessment or reject it and move the next steps.
At this point one of two scenarios will unfold:
a. If both you and the party at fault accept the Injuries Board assessment, your case is settled and the person at fault will be ordered to pay settlement to you.
b. If either you or the person at fault reject the Injuries Board assessment, then you move to the next stage and your solicitor will issue legal proceedings.
Before you start to concern yourself with court and everything that comes with it, it’s important to understand that only a very small percentage of cases actually make it to a courtroom.
Settlement meetings will be arranged where a settlement can be negotiated. Most cases are settled at this point without ever having to step foot into a courtroom and remember it’s your solicitor’s job to be with you every step of the way, right beside you to ensure that your best interests are met at all stages. Your solicitor is to be your trusted advisor throughout the process and to let you focus on your recovery, as they focus on settling your case.
At Tracey Solicitors LLP, we make law accessible to all — regardless of your knowledge or experience with the claims process. For more information and a confidential discussion on your lorry accident, phone 01 649 9900 where you can speak with a member of our team straight away, or email firstname.lastname@example.org to tell us about your case.
We aim to provide clear and independent legal advice and achieve the best possible outcomes for our clients.
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If you are to proceed with a lorry accident claim you may be entitled to claim compensation for the accident and added expenses you may have incurred. These claims are called damages.
General damages are non-financial damages such as pain and suffering and/or physical and emotional injuries following a lorry accident.
Special damages are out of pocket expenses incurred as a result of the lorry accident, for example, loss of earnings (if you are out of work), medical bills, and added travel costs as a result of the accident (for example, travel to and from the hospital). Learn more about Special Damages.
Material damage refers to damage caused to your personal property. For example, in a road traffic accident, the material damage would be the damage to your car.
The statute of limitations are the legal time limits on how long you have to make a claim — these vary depending on the situation. The general rule for most personal injury cases is that the person has two years from the date of the accident or date of knowledge of the accident to make a claim for compensation. Contacting a solicitor to discuss your case will help you in determining how long you have left to make a claim.Learn more about Time Limits
Being involved in a lorry accident, as a driver, passenger, pedestrian or cyclist can be a traumatic experience, especially if you have suffered any personal injuries. The most common injury claims that can occur after a lorry accident are:Learn more about Injury Claims
We draw on more than 30 years of experience in personal injury law to provide you with expert advice and legal services.
We’re here to help you with your claim, and will work with you to ensure you understand every step of your legal journey.
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