Caring for Trucking Accident Victims: What You Should Know
Caring for a truck accident victim can be a daunting process. Compared to a crash involving typical passenger vehicles, a wreck that involves a large commercial truck causes much more damage and frequently leaves victims with debilitating conditions like spinal cord injuries, paralysis, severe burns, and/or traumatic brain injuries (TBIs).
If your loved one has recently been injured in a trucking crash, you may be feeling shocked, overwhelmed, angry, or even in denial. You should know that there are no “wrong” emotional reactions to a traumatic event like this: Everyone processes grief differently and has to undertake their own journey toward accepting the new post-crash reality.
During this time, medical and counseling professionals can play an invaluable role in helping you through the difficult process of adjustment, and there are also support groups in many areas to help you connect with a network of people who understand what you’re going through.
As you receive the important emotional support that can help you through this difficult time, however, you should also make an effort to learn about your loved one’s condition and some of the consequences that may arise from their injuries.
What to Expect after Your Loved One’s Trucking Accident
Recovering from extensive injuries after a trucking accident can be a lifelong process, and some symptoms and disabilities may come and go while others may be permanent. In the aftermath of the crash, it’s important to set realistic expectations regarding the long road ahead for your loved one and their family members, including yourself.
RELATED: How to Deal With Medical Bills After a Trucking Accident
Here are some of the things you can expect if you act as a caregiver for the injured person:
- Body care. The regimen of care for your loved one can seem overwhelming at first. Your loved one’s care requirements will vary depending on the exact nature of their injuries, and their primary care physician and specialists should talk with you regarding their ongoing needs. In general, though, you may need to prepare yourself for:
- Transporting them to and from medical appointments.
- Providing daily personal care, including dressing, bathing, and meal preparation.
- Managing finances.
- Administering medications.
- Acting as an overall coordinator for their care.
These added responsibilities may create stress and seem like too much to bear at times, but there are a number of support groups and online resources for caregivers that may help. These resources are usually tailored to the type of injury the person is experiencing, so searching for resources related to your loved one’s specific injury is often the best way of finding them.
- Emotional care. People who have experienced a traumatic and life-changing injury often experience depression, so it’s important to monitor your loved one and inform a physician or mental health professional if they display any of the following depression symptoms:
- Fluctuations in weight or changes in appetite.
- Oversleeping or insomnia.
- Loss of interest in activities or things around them.
- Abrupt changes in mood or irritability.
- Persistent negative thoughts or feelings of hopelessness.
- Talk of suicide or a fixation with death.
Caregivers can do a number of things to fight the onset of depression. For example, try to maintain active conversations about friends and family, activities, plans, interests, and hobbies so that the person doesn’t feel cut off from the world around them, and encourage visitors to do the same. It’s also important to discuss your feelings and reactions candidly with your loved one rather than trying to hide them, which may make them feel worried and anxious — even if you do it out of concern for their emotional well-being.
Why You Should Contact a Trucking Attorney Right Away after a Crash
Although legal representation may not be the first thing on your mind during a time of grief, you should consider speaking with an experienced trucking attorney as soon as possible if your loved one has been injured in a large truck or bus crash. It’s important to act quickly and contact an attorney after any vehicle wreck for a number of reasons:
- While you understandably may not want to focus on monetary compensation for your loved one’s injuries right away, the economic hardship created by their condition will begin to set in before long. Between the loss of the victim’s wages and the expensive medical bills associated with a debilitating injury, a vehicle crash can create an enormous financial burden on a grieving family. An attorney can help you file a personal injury claim that could lead to compensation for lost wages, medical costs, and the pain and suffering associated with your loved one’s accident.
- An attorney can launch their own investigation of the circumstances surrounding an accident, and the sooner they can do it, the better. As time passes, evidence can be lost or even covered up and witnesses become harder to track down.
- A statute of limitations always exists for personal injury claims, and you won’t be able to file a lawsuit once this period of time expires. The statute of limitations varies by state, but it’s usually between one and three years from the date of the crash.
In addition, trucking cases are more challenging than typical motor vehicle accident cases due to the devastating nature of large truck crashes, which often involve several vehicles and have a variety of causes, and due to the complex federal regulations that govern commercial trucks: the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations.
A trucking accident claim can also involve negligence on the part of several different entities, such as the trucking company, the driver they employed, and parts manufacturers, which makes the claim and related settlement negotiations and litigation more complicated. All of these factors make it even more important to consider an attorney who has a track record of success in handling truck wreck cases to represent you and your loved one.
Contact the Truck Wreck Justice Team Today
If you or a loved one has been injured in a crash involving a large truck or bus, you are not alone. The Truck Wreck Justice team at Truck Wreck Justice has years of experience representing the victims of devastating truck wrecks as well as their loved ones. As a trucking attorney with a practice solely focused on large vehicle cases, Morgan Adam will fight to demand justice for your family and guide you with compassion through the complex issues that surround a trucking accident.
Please contact Truck Wreck Justice at (866) 580-HURT (4878) or fill out our online contact form to schedule your free initial consultation today. We handle cases on a contingent fee basis, which means that you won’t pay for fees or case expenses unless we make a recovery on your behalf. We are ready to start investigating your claim and advocating for you right away.
Bradley, J. (n.d.). Caring for the paralyzed. Caregiver. Retrieved from https://caregiver.com/articles/caring_for_the_paralyzed/
Disability.gov’s guide for family caregivers. (n.d.). Disability.gov. Retrieved from https://www.disability.gov/resource/disability-govs-guide-family-caregivers/