Freight truck speeds through to cause me in accident

Asked over 1 year ago - San Francisco, CA

I was driving in a freeway junction on the left lane of two when a commercial freight truck speed passed me in the right lane on a turning junction. As he was passing me he started entering my lane so I slowed down because I was scared he was going to hit me. After he passed me I got caught in the cross wind from the large truck and lost complete control of my car causing me to spin and hit the side of the freeway. I was the only car that was damaged and the truck continued leaving me with bodily injury. The highway patrol helped me an hour later and told me that if I filed, I would be 100% at fault no matter what because I was not hit and I would have to pay full coverage and have a point go toward my record. I don't see how I could have avoided this other than driving at unsafe speeds

Attorney answers (8)

  1. Steven Curtis Gnau

    Pro

    Contributor Level 11

    8

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Single vehicle accidents, such as the one you describe, are very difficult to establish third party liability. First, it is my understanding from your post that there was no physical contact between the truck and your vehicle (but rather the loss of control was secondary to cross wind). Without physical contact with the phantom vehicle (i.e., the truck) most auto insurance companies providing coverage in California will deny a UM claim. Check your vehicle thoroughly. Even a small amount of paint transfer can make the difference. In the absence of contact, you will face two uphill battles concerning liability and causation. You have the burden of proof as to both. As to liability, it must be proven that the truck driver was driving unsafely in a manner below the standard for the average truck driver. Yet, the truck driver will respond by saying he passed you (which is legal) and that there was room to pass because of there not being any physical contact between the vehicles. Causation will require proof that in this instance the foreseeable condition of the cross wind made your vehicle lose control. However, such a situation differs from the common experience of other drivers on the freeway. Consider a different approach such as a product defect claim if there was something improper about the design of your vehicle to make it unusually and unsafely vulnerable to winds.
    For more information, try reviewing our blog using the link, below.

    This response is not meant as legal advice or as a legal opinion. Such advice would be impossible or impractical... more
  2. David Lee Fiol

    Contributor Level 17

    6

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . What is your question?

  3. Robert Max Klein

    Pro

    Contributor Level 15

    6

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I am sorry to hear about your incident. I think it would very difficult and expensive case. Unless you can identify the truck, I don't know who you would sue. Look on the Avvo site for a lawyer in your area if you are interested in pursuing this matter.

  4. Scott J. Corwin

    Pro

    Contributor Level 18

    6

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I am terribly sorry about your incident. I agree with the responding attorneys that you may want to consult with a California car accident attorney to review your accident and advise you further. Best of luck.

  5. Christian K. Lassen II

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    7

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Have a lawyer investigate a UM claim.

  6. Jeffrey Ira Schwimmer

    Contributor Level 19

    7

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . If the purpose of your post is to inquire as to whether you are liable for your accident, then the answer, sorry to say, is - Likely. Not to diminish the action of the truck in almost entering your lane, the description you provide could lead to a conclusion that you may have very well panicked and over compensated in the turn leading you to lose control and strike the side of the highway. The truck had already passed you before your loss of control; I am not in any way minimizing the wind-affect from a passing semi, but it is highly doubtful that it was of such hurricane or gale force that it was the cause of you leaving your lane without being contacted by that truck or any other vehicle. At a minimum, it is problematical if your insurance company would want to pay on such a claim without something more in the way of proof aside from your word. But, as suggested, consult with a local attorney to see if there are any further details which may help to paint a better picture.

  7. Kevin Coluccio

    Contributor Level 20

    5

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I agree you should consult with an attorney.

  8. John Noah Kitta

    Contributor Level 19

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Unless the freight truck was going 120 miles per hour it is hard to imagine that the crosswind would be the causation of your accident. If you really believe that you are correct you would have to retain the expertise of a reconstruction accident specialist, who could attempt to put together the pieces and establish the validity of your claim.

    If you have found this information helpful, please let the attorney know by marking best answer. Thank you.... more

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