Truck Accident on 59 Near Victoria Kills Three Adults and Two Children


Victoria Truck Accident

Five people died in a truck accident on Highway 59 near Victoria, Texas. Some people have been treated for injuries stemming from the accident.


The Victoria truck crash occurred Saturday morning at the Telferner exit just north of Victoria.


Van Strikes Rear of the Big Rig


The Texas Department of Public Safety investigated the crash led by Sgt. Rubin Miguel. According to Sgt. Miguel, some of the injured and the deceased were in a passenger van that was entering the freeway. For any reason unknown at this time, the van is said to have impacted the left rear of the tractor-trailer which resulted in the driver of the bad losing control, traveling through the median and into oncoming traffic where it collided with a pickup truck during


DPS and Victoria Police Respond to the Truck Accident


Victoria police were also involved in the investigation and help for the injured. According to reports, two people in the pickup truck that was struck after the van lost control were seriously injured and transported to a local hospital.

Victoria Truck Wreck Still Under Investigation

Officers continue to investigate this terrible tragedy. It is unknown at this time what caused the passenger van and semi-truck to collide while both were traveling north on U.S. 59 and lead to the van striking the pickup truck.

Generally, with fatal trucking accidents, an accident reenactment is done by the DPS.


Some Involved Were from Brownsville and Some from Spring


DPS indicates that five people in the van who passed away at the scene were all from Brownsville, TX. The pickup driver and passenger live in the greater Houston area. Fortunately, reports say they have been released from the hospital.


Go Fund Me Step Up for Rodriguez Family


I go fund me page has been set up members of the family and you can donate by clicking here.


Call (281) 893-0760 to Speak With Our Texas Truck Accident Lawyers for a No-Obligation Consultation or Click Here!

Stopping Distance is a Major Factor in Big Rig Rear-End Collisions


The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration estimates that about 20% of all trucking accidents are rear-ended related crashes.

Rear-end collisions with big rigs are incredibly hazardous to the occupants in the vehicles they hit.

Some of the reasons for the severity of injury and frequency of 18-wheeler crashes include:

• A semi-truck can weigh 80,000 pounds, making them the hammer to the 5000-pound passenger car nail. The sheer weight difference between passenger vehicles and semi-trucks makes a rear-end accident much more likely to result in a fatality or a significant injury.
• Big rigs take up to 40% longer to stop, which makes a rear-end collision much more likely.
• A recent estimate by the DOT indicates there were over 23,000 people injured and 700 killed each year due to rear-end truck crashes.

How to Prevent Being Struck from The Rear by a Semi

When you are driving down the highway or interstate, taking extra caution by allowing an assured clear distance with the vehicle ahead of you is born is a smart play. The same rule of thumb applies to cars behind you, and especially tractor-trailers. The stopping distance for the average car pickup truck at 65 miles an hour is 316 feet. The stopping distance for an 18-wheeler at 65 mph is 525 feet!

truck stopping distance
The best way to prevent a rear-end accident is to make sure that the vehicle behind you is far enough away to stop should emergency braking be required. As the old saying goes, often this is much easier said than done. As a practical matter, paying attention to your rearview mirror can save your life. If you have an 18 wheeler close behind, take steps when you can do so stay safely to let the vehicle pass. Or when you can safely do so get ahead of it. If an emergency arises and requires immediate braking, you are much safer with a car behind you than an 18 wheeler.

Big rigs have an advantage of a much better view of traffic ahead than typical pickup trucks or cars. The better vantage points of slowing or stopping traffic should give the professional truck proper a slight edge in reaction time. Nevertheless, as set forth above, it just takes a semi-truck longer to stop.

Another area that can lead to someone being struck from the rear by a semi-truck is bad brakes on the big truck. Both the truck driver and the trucking company have a legal responsibility to ensure the semi is in proper and safe operating condition. The inspection and repair sections of the FMCSR are covered in Section 396. Unfortunately, it is only after there is a significant accident where someone was injured or killed that the defective condition of the brakes is discovered.

Read more here about stopping distance of big rigs.

Read more about what to do after a rear-end truck accident.

I Was Rear Ended By an 18-Wheeler in Houston What Do I do?

What You Need to Know About an 18-Wheeler Stopping Distance

Read More:

What You Need to Know About Commercial Vehicle Accidents in Texas



We have a lot of commercial vehicles in Texas

Texas has thousands of miles of highways and include such major interstates such as I-10 running across the state east and west, I -45 and I -35 running north and south and major highways such other major highways as US 290 from Houston to Austin. Thousands of 18-wheeler tractor trailers travel each highway every day. The sheer number of trucks leads to record numbers of commercial vehicle accidents.Texas commercial truck wreck lawyer


According to annual report prepared by the Texas Department of Transportation we have over hundreds of thousands of registered commercial trucks operating in the US and over 50,000 registered Motor Carriers.


The growth in the transportation business is expected to grow annually by double digits for the next several years and has led to a sever driver shortage. This all adds up that we have to many trucks to be regulated and finite governmental resources to monitor carriers and drivers over safety issues. Usually, it is only after a sever crash do the safety issues become known.


Over 400 people are killed in semi-truck wrecks in Texas each year


It has been reported that over 400 fatalities occurred in Texas due to commercial vehicle accidents in one year alone. And according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in one year alone we had 4,321 fatal accidents in the US involving commercial vehicles.


Most serious injury cases involving commercial vehicles on interstate highways are investigated by The Texas Highway Patrol which has a special accident reconstruction team equipped with the latest mapping and surveying equipment.


Accident reenactment is often done by the Highway Patrol


In serious cases the Texas Highway Patrol will “reconstruct” the accident and often the results many come into evidence in a truck accident lawsuit. The insurance company for the trucking company will be at the scene of an accident involving a wrongful death with in 24 hours of learning about the accident and often before the authorities have removed the vehicles.


It is critical that the victim or the victim’s family hire a big rig accident lawyer early on who will investigate the accident before evidence disappears or vehicles repaired.




Commercial vehicle accidents usually produce injury


Given the extreme weight of 18-wheeler tractor trailers the aftermath of a wreck is usually ugly. Those lucky enough to survive often have serious injuries such as spinal cord fractures, traumatic brain injury, paralysis, and many require at least one surgery (if not multiple) at great expense.


Recovering from a tractor trailer accident can be job enough for anyone, yet the victims are also forced to pay high medical bills or deductibles when they cannot work which puts a heavy burden on the victim or their family. Some have good health insurance that pays most bills, others face large out of pocket expenses and sometimes the medical expenses can go on indefinitely.


Truck wreck damages:


Legal damages for personal injury in Texas include such items as:


  • Physical pain and mental anguish
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Disfigurement
  • Physical impairment
  • Medical care


These damages are posed to a jury to answer in both the past and the future.


Often, for permanent injuries with significant future medical expenses a life care planner is used to calculate the total lifetime cost of medical care. These professionals are Doctors who work with a team of medical professionals to protect the victim as far as future needs.


Where the victim of a trucking accident did not survive, the family seeks damages for the wrongful death and survival claims. The wrongful death case involves damages known in law as “pecuniary loss” which is the loss of the person and their economic contribution to the family. The human loss in a wrongful death case is called “loss of companionship and society” and a separate question is posed for “mental anguish”.


Where the company of the driver acted with “Malice” that is more than mere negligence, or thoughtlessness, exemplary damages in a truck accident  may be appropriate and in Texas such damages have been capped by statute under recent “tort reform”. But when exemplary damages can be submitted to a jury it can help the family recover economic justice for the bad actions of a trucker or his company.


Most truck accidents involve serious injury and /or death. Because a typical rig can weight up to 80,000 pounds, occupants of a 4000-pound passenger car hit by a semi-truck have little hope of escaping serious injury on impact.


Trucker insurance coverage


Fortunately, trucking companies usually have significant insurance coverage to cover legal injury damages.


Given the serious injury potential of large commercial vehicles the minimum insurance required for commercial trucks over 10,000 pounds and subject to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations is $750,000. It has been our experience that most motor carriers carry at least a 1-million-dollar primary policy and companies with more than a few trucks carry an umbrella policy.


The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations require larger insurance coverage for trucks carrying hazardous material and commercial passenger vehicles.


Insurance companies for trucking companies act fast


Given the propensity for serious injury and wrongful death arising from an 18-wheeler accident most insurance companies who underwrite large Truckers Insurance Policies have “quick response teams” on the site of the accident in 24 hours or less.


Such teams gather information helpful in the defense of a wrongful death or serious injury lawsuit. The defense of truck accident cases frequently centers on efforts to shift responsibility from the driver or company to the plaintiff or other third parties.


18-wheeler accidents can cause the death of one or more occupants of the car struck by the tractor trailer. The possibility of death or serious injury is magnified by the sheer weight and size of the trucks. Trucks are much more difficult to stop and control than the family car.


Trucking laws help prove negligence


Trucking regulations such as driver hours and pre-trip inspections attempt to make our roadways safer. However, estimates of traffic fatalities in the US are as high as 45,000 annually, many of these involve commercial trucks.


Violation of the safety rules can be very important evidence and personal injury or wrongful death litigation involving a truck driver and trucking company. The federal regulations which have been largely adopted in the state of Texas, are additional standards of care over and above those placed upon everyday drivers.

The safety rules are necessary because of the injury potential of an 80,000-pound vehicle.


The attorney you choose for your commercial vehicle accident matters


If you have lost a loved one in a truck accident get the best truck accident attorney, you can find when you can as the earlier you retain a truck accident attorney the better position you put them to help your family.


Be wary of hiring an attorney without a significant track record in successfully prosecuting truck accidents. Do your homework and call the best commercial vehicle accident lawyers in Texas.


Call the Texas Truck Accident Lawyers at (281) 893-0760




Some helpful links – the Texas DPS and  the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.



Why Regulation of Big Rigs Is Necessary

Semi-truck accidents in Texas are all too common. Some estimates place the number of big rigs on Texas roads at over 3 million annually.

This is the equivalent of 570,000 railway cars and with numbers this high there are definite consequences. This includes wear and tear on the infrastructure but more important our concern is the human impact.

For example, only a week ago a near-fatal injury accident occurred near Houston on interstate 45 between a semi-truck and several passenger vehicles. It was a clear day and the following scenario should not have taken place.

Due to heavy rush hour traffic, a small bottleneck appeared on the highway causing drivers to slow. The semi-driver claims he did not see or realize that the automobiles in front of him were decelerating until he was nearly upon them and it was too late.

According to eyewitness reports, the semi-truck was traveling northbound when it smashed into two vehicles before swerving across the median and into the southbound lanes of I-45 where it came to rest in front of a rest stop.

One passenger needed to be airlifted to a nearby medical facility and over a hundred gallons of fuel spilled onto the roadway and surrounding area. The passenger cars were a complete loss.

Frankly, it is a miracle there was no greater loss of life and property damage in this example. It is easy to realize that the potential for a greater catastrophe was averted.

It’s times like these, though, that one can see the necessity for real truck accident attorneys who know trucking regulations and are trained to litigate the unique circumstances of a semi-truck accident.

This is also an example of why the federal government and Texas regulate professional truck drivers and trucking companies separately from nonprofessional drivers.

Rules for Truck Drivers

The safety rules for truck drivers and trucking companies are a framework designed to reduce the number of serious truck accidents on our highways. Such things as limiting the number of hours a driver can be on the job or behind the wheel can help reduce the number of fatigued driver accidents, provided the safety rules are followed.

Requiring daily inspections of the tractor-trailer and for all safety repairs to be completed before the big rig being placed back in-service attempts to keep unsafe vehicles off the road.

And making sure that the drivers are properly trained and qualified before they take the road with an 18-wheeler is necessary because of the complexities and limitations of these big trucks.

If you are loved one has been injured in a trucking accident, call get the best commercial vehicle accident lawyer in Houston by calling for a no-obligation consultation.

Call 281-893-0760

Dump Truck Accident Injures Driver in Georgetown



Police were on the scene of a dump truck accident that injured the driver.  According to news reports, the crash happened when a dump truck traveling north on the east frontage road of IH-35 suffered a blown tire, which caused the driver to lose control of the truck. The truck spun and veered off the road and slid down a cement embankment into Berry Creek.

The police closed the exit from IH-35 to Texas Highway 195 as well as the northbound ramp onto IH-35 from the east frontage road while they investigated and cleaned up the scene.

The driver was transported to Seton Medical Center in Williamson County with injuries that were described as non-life-threatening. Luckily, no other vehicles were involved in the accident. The dump truck is owned and operated by Montecillo Masonry, Inc. in Austin.

The Perils of Dump Truck Crashes

Dump trucks are extremely large and heavy. The diesel engine alone may weigh 25,000 pounds. Dump trucks are so huge that they are shipped and built on-site. An average dump truck can weigh 497 tons and travel at a speed of 40 miles per hour, making them extremely dangerous on the road.  When a dump truck collides with a passenger vehicle, the results are often devastating. Injuries can be extremely severe such as back and neck injuries, head trauma, broken bones, and cuts and bruises.

Truck accidents may be caused by a variety of factors. Factors are generally categorized into human error, mechanical failure, and adverse road conditions. A thorough investigation needs to be completed after a dump truck accident to determine the cause and determine the negligent party. In this case, the truck reportedly blew a tire. The company that owns and operates the truck, along with the truck driver, should examine and maintain tires to ensure that they are safe for travel before the vehicle gets on the road. In this instance, the maintenance logs of the truck need to be viewed to find out whether the trucking company properly maintained the vehicle.

In addition, the driver may also have contributed to the crash. When drivers are not adequately trained or do not have enough experience, they may not know what to do when a problem such as a blown tire occurs. Sometimes improper load management also contributes to the crash. When the vehicle makes a maneuver, the load could shift and cause unexpected results. The driver may then be unable to control the vehicle. In this case, the driver survived, so the investigators can conduct an interview to find out more about the incident.

Contact an Experienced Houston Dump Truck Attorney

If you were hurt in a dump truck accident or any type of accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and for your lost wages and pain and suffering.

Do not delay, because the law limits the time to file a claim. Contact an attorney for a dump truck accident to learn how we will help protect your rights and get you the compensation you deserve.

Call (281) 893-0760








Three Dead in Boat Collision near Baytown

A day on the water ended with three fatalities for boaters on Old River Lake. According to reports, a ski boat carrying five people crashed into a bass fishing boat carrying six people. Three people died in the crash and others were critically injured. Two of the victims died at the scene and one died after being air-lifted to Hermann Memorial Hospital. The police investigated the boat crash, which was caused by the ski boat driver. The accident happened near Baytown.

The Chambers County Sheriff’s Office reports that they have arrested and charged the ski boat driver with three counts of intoxication manslaughter with a vehicle and two counts of intoxication assault. Boating while intoxicated is a crime under Texas Law. In this case, the driver was grossly negligent because he caused death and critical injuries.

Why Boat Crashes are Dangerous

Boat crashes can be more dangerous than vehicle accidents for a number of reasons. Boat drivers do not have to have licenses, so they can operate a boat even if they are not skilled. Although boaters should wear life vests at all times on the water, they often do not use these important safety devices. Because boat accidents occur on the water, it can be difficult to rescue injured victims.

Boaters often drink while they are on the water, compromising their ability to safely operate a boat. The boat operator in this case was allegedly boating while intoxicated. Boats can be difficult to control, especially if the driver does not have adequate training or experience. Some boat operators are under the age of 21. In the case mentioned above, the boat driver was 23 years old. The victims and their families are likely to file lawsuits against the driver for his negligent actions.

What to do Following a Boating Accident

You should follow some essential steps following a boating accident in which people suffered injuries. Call the police immediately to respond to the incident and make a report. Get the names and contact information of the other people involved. Take photos, if possible, and immediately seek medical care. Do not wait to get medical treatment because any delay will make it more difficult to prove your injuries occurred due to the crash.

Unlike vehicle accidents, boating accidents are not always easy to litigate. The boater may have inadequate insurance or may not have insurance to cover the accident. Contact an attorney as soon after the accident as possible. Your lawyer will gather information and help you resolve the case to obtain the compensation you deserve. Your attorney will handle all aspects of your case so you can concentrate on your recovery.

A boating accident can change your entire life in an instant. A severe injury could leave you with permanent disabilities. You are entitled to compensation for your injuries and for other damages such as lost wages and pain and suffering. If you or a loved one was hurt in a boating accident, we can help you get the money you need for your damages. Contact our legal team at Baumgartner Law Firm today for a free initial case consultation.







Are Truck Tire Problems to Blame for Big Rig Accidents?

As drivers, we share the road with thousands of big rigs every day. Houston is a hub for many transportation companies and goods must pass through our area to get across the country. As a result, we see more than our fair share of commercial trucks on the highway. You may notice that you often see remnants of big rig tires on the sides of the roads and sometimes in the middle of the lanes. Indeed, truck tires sometimes blow out or go flat. When they do, they can cause serious and sometimes fatal accidents. If you or a loved one was hurt in an accident with a big-rig, contact our experienced Houston truck accident attorneys at Baumgartner Law Firm.

Commercial Truck Tire Regulations

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has regulations in place that truck owners and drivers must follow in order to legally operate a commercial truck. As part of the regulations, truck drivers must perform a basic vehicle inspection before each trip. This includes a visual inspection of the tires. The driver is required to check the wheels, rims, lugs, and tires to ensure they are in good working order.

Documentation of the inspection is generally not a requirement; however, truck drivers and companies may include a pre-trip inspection report to show that they are in compliance of the rules. Sometimes, a driver may not perform an adequate inspection or may forego an inspection altogether, especially if he or she is in a hurry. This can lead to problems on the road.

Tire Inspections

A tire inspection should be conducted at least daily. The driver should check tires for tread wear, cracking, cuts, punctures, bulges, foreign objects, and other road damage. A tire may look fine one day but could have a problem the next, since trucks travel great distances each day. Although trucks have extra sets of tires, they do not necessarily protect the truck from a collision if a tire blows out.

Blowouts are the most common cause of tire-related truck accidents. A blowout can happen when tires are not properly maintained. They also happen when carrying heavy loads and when the weather is hot. Improper inflation is one of the leading causes of truck tire blowouts. Mismatched parts and replacements on tires and wheels can also lead to tire blowouts.

Speeding is another reason that truck tires can blowout more frequently. When a truck speeds, the tires endure more heat. Sometimes this heat is too much for the tires and a tire blows out. Overloading a truck can also put undue stress on the tires. Trucks are required to stay within specific weight limits. When a truck is overloaded, it is also harder to control and stop. This makes it more likely that it will end up in a crash.

Following a truck crash, your attorney will immediately work to gather essential information such as truck maintenance records, driver logs, and previous violations, among other things. If you were hurt in a truck accident, do not delay. Contact Baumgartner Law Firm for the legal help you need to resolve your case and get the compensation you deserve.








How Much is My Truck Accident Injury Claim Worth?

Truck accidents are among the most severe of all types of crashes and they often result in serious injuries. One of the most common questions that truck accident victims have is how much their injury claim is worth. It is important to realize that truck accident claims are much different than other types of accidents. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires trucking companies to carry specific types and amounts of insurance, which are different than those of passenger vehicles. Truck accidents are more complex than other types of accidents and it is often best to have a Houston truck accident attorney guide you through the claim process.

Factors that Determine the Value of an Accident Claim

There are many factors that may be taken into consideration as part of the resolution of a truck accident claim. Some of the most important factors include your total medical costs, severity of your injuries, lost wages, loss of companionship, and pain and suffering. Each case is different and has a unique set of circumstances. Every claim has to be investigated to determine its potential monetary value.

When you meet with our knowledgeable Houston truck accident attorneys, you will learn more about your claim. Keep in mind that we need to fully investigate the accident and injuries before we can more accurately value your claim. While you may have heard that you may get up to three times the amount of your medical bills in a settlement, that is not necessarily true. The entire facts of the case need to be evaluated before a fair settlement determination can be made.

What Happens if My Expenses are Greater Than the Insurance Policy Allows?

Some injuries are extremely critical and may require surgery, long hospital stays, and lengthy rehabilitation. Sometimes an injury may be disabling and the victim might never fully recover. At the same time, insurance policies have limits. Your attorney will need to obtain information from the insurance provider to find out the policy limits. It is essential that you do not agree to a quick settlement from the insurance company until you first speak with a qualified Houston truck accident attorney.

Many times, the insurance company will offer the victim a settlement. The settlement may look tempting, especially if you are beginning to accumulate large medical bills. However, the first settlement is often an attempt to limit the amount of payout. If you accept a check or sign a release from the insurance company, you waive your right to take further legal action. You could end up with significantly less than your expenses require. Talk to an attorney as soon as possible following a truck accident. Your lawyer will work on your behalf to gather evidence in the case and will negotiate with the insurance company.

At Baumgartner Law Firm we have years of experience working on truck accident cases. We have obtained millions of dollars for our clients. We are available to discuss your injury with a free, no-obligation, initial consultation. Contact Baumgartner Law Firm today for your injury claim needs.


What Information is Necessary for a Truck Accident Investigation?

Truck accidents are among the most serious types of accidents on the roads. Large commercial trucks may weigh up to 80,000 pounds, making them many times heavier than a standard passenger car. It is no surprise that truck accidents result in severe and life-threatening injuries. If you were hurt in a truck accident, it is essential to get legal assistance from a reputable Houston truck accident attorney. At our law firm, we understand truck crashes and know how to gather evidence and negotiate your claim to get you the maximum settlement.

trucking accident attorney in Houston

Truck Accident Investigation

Truck accidents are extremely complex and require tenacious investigation. There are many parts to a truck accident investigation. Your attorney will take charge of gathering and reviewing information about the incident, such as:

Police Report: The police report of the accident is just a starting point to review the crash. The report provides information that the police gathered at the scene. Your attorney will find the contact information of the other driver, the insurance company, and witnesses.

Eyewitness Depositions: Eyewitnesses provide statements to the police at the time of the crash. Your attorney will review the statements and may need to get further details. Witnesses may be needed to provide oral or written statements and they may need to appear in court.

Electronic Data: Commercial trucks generally must have data recorders on board. An accident expert will review the information to learn the speed of the truck at the time of the crash, whether the driver applied the brakes and other useful data. It is essential to gain access to the electronic log as soon as possible after the accident.

Driver Log: The driver keeps track of his work through a log, which is typically in electronic format. The log indicates how long the driver was on the road and other details. The driver must have followed regulations that require him or her to take breaks and to stop driving at the end of a shift. The failure to comply may show that the driver was fatigued at the time of the incident.

Cell Phone Records: Texting while driving is against the law. Your attorney can get cell phone records of the driver with a subpoena. The records will show whether the driver was talking or texting at the time the crash happened.

Vehicle Maintenance Records: Trucking companies must maintain trucks according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requirements. When a truck is not properly maintained, a mechanical malfunction could cause or contribute to a crash. The trucking company keeps these records and a subpoena may be necessary to obtain them.

Shipment Records: Trucks carry a significant amount of cargo. The load must be properly secured. When a truck makes a sudden movement, the load can shift unexpectedly and cause the vehicle to get out of control. In addition, the shipment records show the pickup and destination of the cargo.

Call the Truck Wreck Lawyer

We have a team of highly skilled professionals that are ready to handle all aspects of your case. A thorough investigation will usually uncover important information that is vital to your case. Contact our 18-wheeler attorneys for an initial consultation- 281-893-0760!

What Should I do if I Was Hurt in a Houston Bus Accident?

Buses fill an important role in our nation’s cities and towns, large and small. Whether you are going across the state or across the country, a bus is one of the easiest and most affordable options. We usually think of a bus as a safe option for getting from one place to another. Unfortunately, bus accidents happen from time to time. When a bus gets into a crash, passengers may receive severe and life-threatening injuries. Some bus accidents result in fatalities. If you were injured in a bus crash, you need to get legal help from an experienced Houston personal accident attorney.

Bus Crash Lawyers in Houston

What Causes Bus Accidents?

There are a variety of factors that may cause or contribute to a bus accident. The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) tracks accidents, including bus crashes. There are three main categories that include human factors, mechanical failure and weather or road conditions. Some of the common factors that caused bus accidents include:

  • Driver inattention
  • Speeding
  • Failure to yield
  • Fatigue
  • Improper evasive action
  • Tire problems
  • Failure to maintain lane
  • Drug or alcohol use

These factors are noted by police on the accident report. Police interview the drivers and witnesses to determine the cause of a crash. Many times, there are multiple factors at play in any given incident.

Bus Safety Laws

There are many types of buses that are in use across the state. These include transit, school, private, sightseeing, and charter buses. Texas laws are in place to improve the safety of buses that operate within the state. Buses must be no longer than 45 feet in length. Buses that are 35 feet or longer must have air brakes and they must also have more than two axles in the rear. All glass on the bus must be made of materials that are approved for safety. The law requires buses to have special lights and markers in various positions on the outside of the vehicle to make them more visible.

Buses must comply with the federal regulations. In general, highway safety is the responsibility of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), National Highway Safety Administration (NHSA) and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and other government agencies.

What to do Following a Bus Accident

If you are the victim of a bus accident, you have likely gone through a harrowing experience. Some bus accidents are extremely dangerous and scary. First and foremost, seek medical attention for your injuries. Make sure that you see a doctor as soon as possible to ensure that you can prove that the injuries occurred as a result of the crash. Contact a knowledgeable Houston personal injury attorney. Bus accidents can be extremely complicated and you need to make sure that you protect your rights.

You may be owed money for your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. We will handle negotiations with the insurance company and will work to resolve your case with the best possible results.

Contact our compassionate truck accident lawyers for a free case consultation. Call 281-893-0760!

One Dead in I-10 Crash Involving a Semi-Truck

A portion of the I-10 was closed down for a period of time for the investigation of a fatal accident in the inbound lanes of I-10 near Normandy. The accident occurred when a vehicle stalled on the freeway. The driver exited the vehicle and was walking along the highway when he was struck by a pickup truck. Then, a semi-truck traveling in the same direction was unable to stop and crashed into the scene, landing on its side. The driver/pedestrian died at the scene.

What to do if Your Vehicle Breaks Down

If your vehicle stalls on the road, get over to the right shoulder and put on your emergency flashers. Do not attempt to push your vehicle and do not exit your vehicle until you are safely parked. If you must leave your vehicle, walk far away from the highway or up the embankment. Call the police and request emergency assistance. In the case mentioned above, the driver exited the vehicle and walked along the highway during the early morning hours, when visibility was low. These factors likely contributed to the fatal crash.

Truck Accidents

Truck accidents are among the most deadly in the country. Large commercial semi-trucks may weigh as much as 80,000 pounds when they have a full load. This makes it extremely difficult for truck drivers to stop their vehicles suddenly. The truck mentioned above tried to stop but instead, flipped onto its side and slid. Inattentiveness and fatigue are two of the most common factors in semi-truck accidents. Truck drivers need to remain aware of traffic and road conditions so they can take the steps necessary to stop or avoid an accident.

Following a major truck accident, the Texas Highway Patrol and possibly the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigates the cause of the crash. There may be several factors that contribute to a crash. If you were involved in a truck accident, you may suffer serious injuries. Your first concern should be getting the medical care you need to get on the path toward recovery. Once you have done so, contact an experienced Houston truck accident attorney. Your lawyer will evaluate the accident and gather information to determine the best way to move forward.

Truck accidents are more complex than other accidents and therefore they can be much more difficult to resolve. You want to make sure that you have a legal team on your side to protect your interests and get the best possible resolution. You may be owed money for your injuries and other damages including pain and suffering and lost wages. The negligent party should be held responsible for your damages. We have the experience and expertise to handle all types of truck accident claims. We have obtained millions of dollars for our clients.

Contact The attorneys for Houston truck wrecks for a free initial case consultation. Call 281-893-0760!


Personal Conveyance: Rules That Allow a Trucker to Drive Over the Limit

Passenger vehicles share the roadways with millions of big rigs. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) there are more than 130 million commercial trucks in use nationwide. California and Texas have the most trucks with a combined total of about 25 million. Millions of trucks can make driving on our roads more dangerous. Trucks are required to follow federal and state regulations. However, there are some differences in the rules when drivers are not on duty.

What is Personal Conveyance?

Personal conveyance (PC) is the personal use of a commercial motor vehicle. This is the time spent driving by truck drivers when they are not actually on the clock. Drivers are allowed to drive big rigs for personal conveyance as long as they follow the rules set forth by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Carriers are not required to allow their drivers to use the trucks for personal conveyance; however, if they do, they must enforce the rules.

There are some appropriate uses of a truck for personal conveyance which include:

  • Traveling between the driver’s home and work locations
  • Driving from overnight lodging to a restaurant
  • Driving to a safe location for a rest stop for off-duty periods required by law
  • Moving a truck for a safety official
  • Traveling in a motorcoach without passengers while off duty
  • Transporting personal property while not on duty

There may be additional uses that are appropriate. In addition, there are some personal uses that do not qualify as personal conveyance. For instance, the driver cannot count the time as PC when driving to a location for rest after he or she has already exceeded the maximum driving period under the law.

What are the Important Personal Conveyance Enforcement Considerations?

The interpretation of Hours of Service (HOS) is complex and sometimes confusing. The driver must always follow the law and therefore may not be allowed to use the truck for PC at certain periods of time based on his or her use.

At the heart of PC time are the two basic questions as to whether driving the truck was for personal benefit alone and whether the driver was relieved of all work responsibility and able to participate in personal activities. When a truck driver is driving under personal conveyance, the issues of liability and authorization are important.

The company is ultimately responsible for determining PC and for authorizing a vehicle for PC use. Generally, the company must determine insurance policy coverage issues and give drivers detailed instructions so that they understand how they are allowed to use the truck for personal conveyance.

Time the driver spends driving for PC counts toward their break time under the law. Drivers must have a 10-hour break or a 34-hour restart in order to obtain restorative rest. If the PC time significantly reduces this rest time, the driver may actually be driving while fatigued.

Importantly, the law allows drivers to drive during their rest time but prohibits PC driving while fatigued or when sick. This leaves the PC time to interpretation should an accident occur.

CDL drivers are required to log their driving time electronically under the Electronic Logging Device mandate. The ELD logs the status of drivers and provides documentation of the hours of service that are recorded by each driver. Carriers are not required to provide a special category for drivers to record personal use time, although some do.

The law is extremely complicated regarding the use of trucks for personal conveyance. If you were injured in an accident with a big rig, it is important to seek guidance from an experienced truck accident attorney. The records of the truck driver and company must be obtained to determine whether the driver was operating the vehicle safely and in accordance with the law.

Contact our Houston truck accident law firm to discuss the details of your case today. Call (281) 893-0760!


Do I Have an Obligation to Mitigate Damages?

When you are involved in a car or truck wreck, you suddenly have to make a number of important decisions. You may have been seriously hurt and your car may have been towed from the scene of the crash. Although some things are out of your control, you are supposed to take reasonable steps to mitigate your damages. The term “mitigate damages” simply means that you must take reasonable care to prevent your damages from getting worse.

Mitigating Damages in a Car or Truck Accident Case

Mitigating your damages means that you must take particular actions if they are reasonable and necessary to prevent further damage or injury. It generally applies to property damages but it can also be applied to physical injuries. A common problem following a crash is that your vehicle was towed from the scene. You may not even immediately know where the vehicle ended up. However, the tow company charges for the tow and for storage of the vehicle while it is located on their premises.

You will need to take steps to remove your car from the tow yard before incurring excessive fees. For instance, you cannot abandon your car there and later request compensation for the multiple charges that were incurred on the vehicle. The law uses the term “reasonable” and this can be somewhat subjective.

Mitigation can also apply to your medical condition. You have a duty to follow the doctor’s orders when you seek medical attention after an accident. If the doctor tells you not to return to work, or puts other limitations on you, but you do not follow your doctor’s orders and your condition worsens, this portion of your medical care may be due to your own failure to mitigate.

Failure to Mitigate

Texas law requires that you have a “duty to mitigate or avoid damages in a manner appropriate to the action.” The judge or others who adjudicate the matter can determine whether a person took the steps necessary to prevent further damages or injuries from happening. It is important to be careful when making decisions regarding your medical treatment following your injury. It is not surprising to know that insurance companies may seize on any shred of information to try to prove that you failed to mitigate and are therefore not owed complete compensation.

It is not uncommon for insurance companies to try to twist the facts to meet their own agenda. For instance, you may return to work because you cannot go without pay, but the insurance company may use that against you by saying that it proves that your injuries were not significant.

This confusing scenario can be resolved more easily with help from an experienced Houston 18-wheeler accident attorney. Your lawyer will guide you through the process and help you make decisions that will be best for your particular situation.

Call us to schedule a no-obligation consultation about your rights, actions and options after an injury accident. 

Call (281) 893.0760  24/7

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Houston/Texas Truck Accident Lawyer-Greg Baumgartner

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