To obtain a commercial driver’s license in Minnesota, applicants must pass a written exam and a road test. There are a few other requirements such as providing proof of citizenship and completing a medical self-certification form, but none have to do with actual training hours.
In other words, the state doesn’t impose minimum training standards for commercial drivers. It’s up to motor carriers to implement such standards so their employees can anticipate and avoid accident scenarios.
If you were hurt in a truck crash and you think a lack of driver training may have played a role, it’s important that you consult an attorney right away. It may be necessary to apply legal pressure to obtain the evidence needed to prove liability in such a case. Your lawyer can help you gather this evidence, calculate your damages, and handle settlement negotiations with the opposing party.
Read on to learn the answers to three FAQs about truck accidents caused by a lack of driver training:
- Who Is Responsible for Ensuring Drivers Are Properly Trained?
Motor carriers must take reasonable steps to ensure their employees have the skills and training to operate their vehicles safely. As such, trucking companies can often be held liable for accidents caused by their employees’ inexperience.
An exception may apply if the trucker is an independent contractor. In such a scenario, injured parties would usually bring a claim against the at-fault trucker.
- How Can I Prove a Truck Accident Was Caused by a Lack of Driver Training?
If you were hurt in an accident caused by an inexperienced trucker, evidence that might contribute to the strength of your claim includes:
- Expired or insufficient training certificates;
- The trucker’s original employment application;
- The motor carrier’s standard operating procedures;
- The motor carrier’s training records;
- Information from the vehicle’s event data recorder;
- Driver logs;
- Weigh station receipts;
- Dash cam recordings;
- Footage captured by surveillance cameras near the scene;
- Photographs of the wreckage;
- Eyewitness testimony; and
- Expert witness testimony.
- What Kinds of Damages Can I Pursue?
In the state of Minnesota, personal injury claimants may pursue the following damages:
- Hospital bills;
- Prescription medication and other past and future healthcare costs;
- Lost wages;
- Lost benefits;
- Loss of earning capacity;
- Property damage;
- Transportation, home care, domestic help, and other objectively calculable losses;
- Pain and suffering;
- Mental anguish;
- Loss of companionship or consortium; and
- Loss of enjoyment in life.
If the defendant acted with a willful disregard for the rights of others—for example, if the trucker was driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol—you may be able to seek punitive damages in addition to compensatory damages.
Call 320-259-5414 to Discuss Your Case with a St. Cloud Truck Accident Lawyer
If you want to sue a reckless trucker or negligent motor carrier in Minnesota, contact Bradshaw & Bryant. Our attorneys and outstanding support staff are committed to protecting the physical, emotional, and financial wellbeing of our clients. Call 320-259-5414 or fill out our Contact Form to schedule a free, confidential consultation with a truck accident attorney in St. Cloud
A founding partner with Bradshaw & Bryant, Mike Bryant has always fought to find justice for his clients—knowing that legal troubles, both personal injury and criminal, can be devastating for a family. Voted a Top 40 Personal Injury "Super Lawyer" multiple years, Mr. Bryant has also been voted one of the Top 100 Minnesota "Super Lawyers" four times.