Whether driving a passenger car or a big rig, those who operate vehicles on the road must carry liability insurance to cover the cost of damages and injuries incurred should the vehicle cause an accident. Truck accidents cause greater damage and more substantial injuries than a similar car accident; however, as I-45 truck accident attorneys point out, the minimum required coverage for these vehicles does not provide enough coverage when an accident does occur. I-45 truck crash lawyers suggest that based on today’s costs, the minimum insurance requirement is no where near sufficient. For this reason, many truck wreck lawyers advocate the increase of liability insurance limits for commercial trucking companies.
Commercial Trucks – Liability Insurance
Attorneys who handle accidents on the busy I-45 interstate system and other busy Texas highways note that every class of truck is required by federal law to carry a minimum amount of liability insurance for the protection of those who are injured or receive property damage in an accident. Currently, that amount is $750,000 per truck, which is much lower than the $30,000 per person and $60,000 per accident injury limits and $25,000 per accident property damage. In reality, such coverage limits it is not excessive at all.
Lawyers with clients involved in truck wrecks state the minimum liability rates for commercial trucks have not been increased since 1985, although all other costs associated with accidents to include vehicle repairs, medical care, rehabilitation costs and more have risen exponentially in that 30-year period. As a result, this minimum coverage is no longer sufficient, considering the catastrophic damage and injuries that can result from a trucking accident, which can cost upwards of $4 million in an accident involving a fatality.
Commercial Trucks – When They Are Under-Insured
Liability insurance provides a trucking company with a means to compensate a person for damage and injuries caused by their trucks. When there is not enough insurance to cover damages, lawyers who work with people injured in truck crashes on I-45 and other Texas roads say claimants are either under compensated, or end up in litigation with the trucking company, costing everyone more money. The cost of an underinsured accident costs everyone in higher premiums for personal auto insurance to cover underinsured claims that result from accidents involving underinsured commercial vehicles. The simplest answer to this problem is to increase the minimum amount of liability insurance for commercial vehicles to reflect current claim costs.
Commercial Trucks – Raising Minimum Liability Insurance Limits
When the minimum liability coverage rate for commercial trucks was set in the 1980’s, it was planned to gradually increase as health care and cost of living increased. This never happened, which was due in part to efforts by the commercial trucking industry to keep rates as low as possible and avoid increased insurance premiums. Last year, the FMCSA announced its intent to confront this issue by raising the minimum required coverage to account for inflation; however, to do this, the safety organization required DOT funding to research the appropriate amount. Unfortunately, by only one vote, the House of Representatives voted not to approve this funding. Despite the loss, it does reflect that at least half of the House members realize the minimum coverage amount is outdated and in need of updating.
Lawyers who handle truck wrecks see the financial after-effects of devastating truck accidents support the increase in liability minimum limits and recommend that concerned citizens write their representatives about the issue. As always, anyone injured in a trucking accident should speak with lawyers experienced with truck accidents occurring on I-45 and other Texas roadways should immediately get the necessary assistance for a fair settlement. Truck accident attorneys who know about the type of accidents that happen on I-45, and specialize in personal injury claims, understand how to best represent clients who are faced with a trucking company that does not have enough liability insurance.