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Truck Driver’s Negligence: What is the Trucking Company’s Liability?

Understanding Trucking Company’s Liability in New Mexico After a Truck Driver’s Negligence Harms You

Trucks like 18 wheelers and tankers do not drive themselves.  Or at least, not yet.  Rather, trucks are driven by truck drivers.  These truck drivers must study, pass a written test, pass a driving test, and then shadow another trucker in order to get a license.  Truck drivers also must stay abreast of new regulations and laws, as well as new safety measures and devices for both themselves and others on the roadways.  While there are many good truck drivers, like any other profession, there are also many bad truck drivers.  Many times it is the negligence of a truck driver that causes a serious New Mexico trucking accident.  As a result, innocent people can be seriously injured or wrongfully killed due to a truck driver’s negligence.

But most people release that a truck driver is not going to be able to pay for the injuries that a massive 18 wheeler or semi tractor trailer causes.  Rather, a truck driver is simply not able to pay for these expenses like a victim’s medical bills, lost wages, loss of consortium, pain and suffering, medical equipment, and other expenses.  And after all, it is not necessarily fair to require a truck driver to pay for these expenses when the trucking company is making lots of money off the truck driver’s work.  This is why our experienced Albuquerque trucking accident lawyer knows that it is imperative to hold the trucking company liable for all conduct caused by the negligence of the truck driver.

How Can a Trucking Company be Liable for the Conduct of a Truck Driver?

Like almost all states, a trucking company can be liable for the negligence of the trucking company’s employees.  This is because of the common law, or judge-made law, that has evolved and been passed down over the centuries.  Most of this law comes from British law.  The applicable doctrine is known as respondeat superior, and it is a type of vicarious liability which imposes one entity’s liability on another.

An employer and employee have a relationship that dates back to what is known as a master-servant relationship. As long as the employee/servant is working in furtherance and in direction of the employer/master, the negligence of an employee will be imputed on the employer.  This means that an employee’s mistakes can create liability for the employer.  This is better for the victim because the trucking company is more likely to have a higher insurance policy or the financial means to pay for pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses related to the truck accident.

In a trucking accident, the negligent actions of a truck driver can result in liability for the trucking company.  Some of the most common examples of negligence of a truck driver imputing against a trucking company include the following:

  • Texting while driving
  • Speeding
  • Mechanical errors
  • Talking on a cell phone
  • Improper left turns
  • Unsafe lane changes
  • Dangerous u-turns
  • Improper backing up
  • Rollovers or jackknifes 
  • Unsecured cargo
  • Distracted driving
  • Drunk driving
  • Drugged driving
  • Fatigued driving
  • Rushing to make a delivery, and
  • Other types of negligent conduct.

Injured in a Trucking Accident in New Mexico?  We Can Help

Victims who have been injured in a trucking accident in New Mexico should work with our experienced Albuquerque trucking accident lawyers to ensure that their rights to compensation are protected under New Mexico law.  Here at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., we offer FREE consultations and accept cases without taking any upfront money.  We handle cases throughout New Mexico, including in Las Cruces, Rio Rancho, Santa Fe, Roswell, Farmington, Hobbs, Lordsburg, or anywhere else in the state, including Albuquerque where our law office is located. Call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. by dialing (505) 883-5000 to learn how we can help.  You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.

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