Werner Enterprises is an interstate trucking company that is headquartered in Nebraska and employs over 10,000 drivers and owns roughly 23,000 trailers used to transport materials that include construction equipment, lumber mail, produce, grain and household goods. When evaluating the safety record of any company it is important to note that some accidents may be the result of simple human error, but patterns may exist in the data which suggest that improvements can be made to reduce the number of serious truck accidents and fatalities on the road. The following statistics reveal that Werner Enterprises can still make great strides toward improvement which will make our highways safer.
If you or a loved one was injured in an accident involving a Werner Truck, we invite you to contact the trucking accident attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC for a free review of your legal rights and options for a recovery.
Werner Enterprises Safety Statistics and Trends
Over a two year period, 1,188 accidents were reported involving Werner Enterprises trucks and 387 of the accidents resulted in an injury. Only thirty-six fatalities were reported over this time, but one-third of the truck accidents resulted in injuries requiring medical care of some kind. The following statistics are also relevant when considering the company's safety record.
- Regulators performed 19,592 inspections during this period. 234 out of service violations were reported, and there were 352 reports of drivers in violation of service hours requirements. These statistics are concerning when considering the impact that fatigue has on drivers and the likelihood of accidents when drivers have not received adequate rest between shifts.
- Regulators performed 10,789 inspections on Werner Enterprises vehicles during this time, and 1,553 out of service violations were reported among these investigations. This statistic reveals that 15% of Werner Enterprises vehicles received at the very least, a minor infraction upon inspection.
- 26 cases in which a driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol were reported. Luckily, when compared to the number of drivers and inspections, this number is low. Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is just unacceptable and in an ideal world, this number would be zero.
- Werner Enterprises has questionable maintenance standards. There were 4,046 instances in which an inspection resulted in a fundamental vehicle maintenance violation or worse. When compared with the industry as a whole, Werner Enterprises is significantly behind its competitors in this regard.
How Liability is Determined in Werner Truck Accident Lawsuits
There are several ways in which fault can be established following a truck accident. The most apparent determination of fault is when the driver makes an error in judgment, is fatigued or under the influence. However, the driver is not the sole party that can be held responsible. The owner of the vehicle or the truck company itself can be held liable through vicarious liability and whoever is responsible for maintaining the vehicle can be held accountable if maintenance records show that the truck was not serviced properly.
Defective semi-tractors, trailers and other equipment may also result in an accident. For this reason, it is crucial that you have an accident reconstruction team evaluate the scene of the crash and all relevant evidence to determine the exact cause. From there, your truck accident attorney will be able to make a precise determination of fault and value your case accordingly. If you have been in a truck accident, it is vital that you obtain representation from a legal team with resources that will add value to your claim and allow you to receive all of the services that you require during your physical recovery.
Sample Truck Accidents and Settlements Involving Werner Trucks
$2,400,000 MISSOURI AWARD.
The victim in this truck crash was sixty-two. Her name was Doris Edwards. She was travelling along a Missouri road when she spotted traffic. She slowed to avoid collision. It was late out, and visibility wasn't great. Cars went along at a snail's pace. She marched along. Then, out of the nowhere, a large Werner truck crashed into the back of one of the cars. This started a large chain reaction accident. Many vehicles were involved. Lots of people were hurt. Tons of property was damaged. Yet, most tragic of all, Doris lost her life. Her estate sued the company and the driver. They contended the defendants' negligence caused her death. They listed a number of failures. The driver didn't apply the brakes fast enough. He didn't reasonably pay attention while driving. Finally, he didn't get enough rest before driving. Right away, the defendants objected. Yet, the trial continued. Arguments, motions, and examinations took place at court. After those happened, it was in the jury's hands. At the end of day, they awarded the estate more than two million dollars. That was supposed to make up for the pain, cost, and loss of the death. Yet, any amount of money is a paltry substitute after an accident like this.
$6,500,000 PENNSYLVANIA SETTLEMENT.
This case reminds us of the dangerous risk of texting while driving. Here, the setting was Pennsylvania. Two cars were driving right next to each other. One was a Volkswagen. The other was a large Werner truck. The little car cut right in front of the big rig. The truck clipped it and that sent the car flying around the street. It actually crashed into another car and burst into flames. The two men in the Volkswagen died from these burns. Later, reps for the estate of one of them sued Werner and the trucker. The suit said that the trucker was negligent by failing to avoid clipping the car. This was true in their opinion despite the fact that the victims cut off the truck. Also, the complaint focused on Werner too. It said that it should not have given its truckers the messaging system. This was what the trucker was using at the time of the accident. It was a distraction ripe to cause a crash the plaintiffs stated. All in all, they felt the defendants were to blame for the deaths. The defendants raised several objections. Yet, they couldn't do enough to stave off settlement. The plaintiffs received the amount listed above.
$18,500,000 INDIANA JURY AWARD.
This was one of the largest awards in truck accident history. There was good reason for it too. The victim's life was forever changed. The business that caused it kept on trucking. What happened? A man was driving down I-74 in Indiana. A Werner truck crashed right into him head-on. The man's car was thrown across the road. He sustained major brain damage. He required immediate medical care. Also, he would need support for the rest of his life. His work and personal life were totally altered. Through counsel, he brought suit against the trucker and Werner. In his suit, he said the latter was vicariously liable as the trucker's employer. Both sides couldn't agree to settle before trial. The matter was put to a jury. They decided the defendants were to blame. Also, they found the defendants were entirely to blame. This meant the plaintiff for the full measure of his damages. If the jury found him to be partially responsible, his recovery would be reduced. If that portion was 50% or more, then his recovery might be totally barred. That wasn't the case here. The man received the large award as compensation for his significant injuries, costs, and change in life.
$15,785,257 WYOMING JURY AWARD.
The facts of this case arose on a busy road in Wyoming. To be precise, it occurred at the intersection of I-80 and I-25. The victim, a middle-aged man, was going from I-80 to I-25. The defendant, a Werner trucker, was careening down I-25. As the man tried to get onto the road, the trucker clipped him. This caused the man's car, an expensive BMW, to spin out of control. He suffered extraordinary injuries. He brought suit against the trucker and Werner. The man's wife joined the action. She claimed the crash also caused her damages. Specifically, she alleged lost support and consortium. The man claimed a lot more. He had a spinal injury that would take years of care and lots of money. He had already racked up over $1 million in medical bills. His thriving career and social life that were taken away too. The defendant shot back with a number of defenses. Thus, this case got into the weeds on facts. Both sides argued that the other was responsible for the crash. In the end, the jury found for the plaintiffs. They awarded him $15,785,257. Also, they awarded the woman $2,284,000. Note, the defendants appealed on many procedural points. However, the appeals court affirmed the lower court's decision. The award stood.
Injured in an Accident Involving a Werner Truck? Contact Us Today
The Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC are a leading truck accident litigation law firmt hat has access to all of the resources you need to maximize your claim. We've secured compensation for hundreds of clients involved in trucking accidents just like yours. More importantly, however, is that we have the resources at our disposal to ensure that you receive the best medical care available and can afford that care by aggressively going after the people who are responsible for your injuries. Contact us to schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys to discuss your legal rights following an accident with a Werner Enterprises truck.
During your risk-free consultation, we will answer any questions that you may have about your chances of success and the course of action that is in your best interest. We will also collect all of the information we need to begin a thorough investigation into the nature and cause of your Werner truck accident case so that we can more accurately assess your case and how confident we are that we can assist you. We only receive compensation when our clients do, so regardless of your financial situation, you can be assured that if we fail to recover damages on your behalf, our services and resources will come at no cost to you.