Forklift accidents can be devastating, causing severe injuries and even death. From 2011 to 2017, there were nearly 61,000 sustained injuries and 614 deaths from forklift accidents. These accidents are far too common and can significantly affect the lives of everyone involved. You or a loved one may have experienced a forklift accident in Dallas, Texas. If so, it’s essential to seek the help of a skilled and experienced Dallas forklift accident attorney.
With the proper legal representation, you can fight for the compensation you deserve and hold responsible parties accountable for their negligence. Here, we’ll explain all aspects of a forklift accident you must understand and what to look for in a legal team.
Common Causes of Forklift Accidents
There are several common causes of forklift accidents nationwide.
1. Operator Error
Forklift drivers may sometimes fail to operate the equipment properly, use the wrong settings, or improperly leave the machine when not in operation. Lack of responsibility can lead to accidents, as inappropriate operator decisions can compromise equipment stability.
2. Inadequate Training
Some employers may cut corners or provide minimal training, putting employees at risk. Without proper training, operators may be unaware of the hazards associated with forklift operations, such as weight limits, stability requirements, or emergency response.
Overworked or exhausted forklift operators may have slower reaction times and reduced concentration, increasing the likelihood of accidents.
Distractions like using a cell phone or talking to colleagues while operating the forklift can divert the operator’s attention and lead to errors.
5. Poorly Maintained Equipment
Improperly inspected and maintained forklifts can develop mechanical issues, compromising their safety. Brake failures, steering problems, and malfunctioning hydraulics are just a few examples of equipment failures resulting in accidents.
6. Lack of Safety Features
To prevent accidents, employers should implement safety measures like barriers, warning signs, and designated pedestrian walkways. Failure to do so can result in collisions between forklifts and pedestrians, leading to severe injuries or even fatalities.
A forklift operator may use it to fool around and perform unnecessary maneuvers. These actions can easily lead to accidents and injuries. This equipment should never be used for a joke or entertainment purposes.
8. Operating Under the Influence
Operating a forklift while under the influence of drugs or alcohol can severely affect the ability of the operator and quickly lead to accidents and harm to both the driver and anyone else they contact.
9. Damaged Warehouse Floors
If work area floors are uneven or have many cracks, it’s common for forklifts to crash or tip over. Warehouse owners should ensure the floors are even and safe before allowing forklift operations on the property.
If you’ve been injured in a forklift accident due to an employer’s or other party’s negligence, it’s vital to consult with an experienced Dallas forklift accident attorney immediately.
The Impact of a Forklift Accident on Your Personal Life
Imagine waking up one morning, ready to start the work day, only to have it abruptly shattered by an accident. A forklift accident can significantly impact your personal life in the following ways:
- Physical Injuries: These injuries can include minor cuts and bruises, broken or crushed bones, spinal cord or back injuries, disfigurement or scarring, or even death.
- Emotional and Mental Issues: The memory of the accident including sounds and sights can haunt you for the rest of your life. The trauma of such an event can produce emotional scarring, struggles with anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
- Livelihood Complications: The aftermath of a forklift accident can disrupt income for you and your family.
- Injury Expenses: Emergency medical care, surgeries, hospital stays, and rehabilitation costs can quickly drain your savings and cause financial hardship. The stress of mounting debt and the uncertainty of providing for your family’s basic needs can be overwhelming.
- Long Recovery Process: You may require ongoing medical treatment, rehabilitation, and therapy to regain physical and emotional well-being. The road to recovery can be long and arduous, filled with countless doctor’s appointments, painful procedures, and hours of physical therapy.
- Social Effects: The inability to participate in activities you once enjoyed, like sports or going out with friends, can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness. The strain on relationships with family and friends can be immense as they struggle to understand and support you through this difficult time.
Although the road to recovery may be long and challenging, proper support and legal representation can rebuild your life and help you regain a sense of normalcy. Having a Dallas forklift accident lawyer on your side is crucial. An expert attorney understands the devastating impact of these accidents and will fight for your rights.
What to Do if You’ve Been in a Forklift Accident
When a forklift accident occurs, you should immediately take four steps to get the protection and information you’ll eventually need for a lawyer.
1. Assess Your Injuries
Forklift accidents can cause serious physical harm, including bleeding and broken bones. Immediately after an accident, assess yourself and see if you’re physically okay. Call for immediate medical assistance if necessary. Your safety and medical attention should be the number one priority.
2. Document the Incident
Your lawyer will need evidence to defend your case, so take pictures of the accident, including injuries sustained and damages to the forklift or anything else. You should request any available surveillance videos and record witnesses explaining what happened.
3. Report the Incident
Immediately notify employers or supervisors of an incident. They’ll know the company procedures for accidents. You also don’t want to be accused of hiding accident details; be as honest and upfront as possible.
4. Get a Forklift Accident Lawyer
You should find a qualified lawyer immediately after the accident. The sooner you contact one, the better your lawyer will be prepared to defend your case and secure the best possible settlement.
How a Dallas Forklift Accident Attorney Can Help
Many companies employing forklift operators have skilled legal teams that will try to discount your claims or prove that the accident was your fault. They may attempt to use loopholes in your contract or criticize how you described the incident and cast doubt on your story. A skilled lawyer will help you stand up to this and ensure others don’t take advantage of you or the situation.
A Dallas forklift injury lawyer can provide invaluable assistance throughout the legal process. They’ll handle all communication and negotiations with insurance companies and opposing counsel, allowing you to focus on recovery. Your lawyer will thoroughly investigate the case, consult experts, and build a solid legal strategy tailored to your situation. Your legal team will determine who is responsible if a forklift accident occurs.
Moreover, a skilled lawyer will have the knowledge and experience to calculate the full extent of your damages accurately. When seeking compensation, they’ll account for every aspect of your physical, emotional, and financial suffering. Having a dedicated advocate on your side can increase the chances of obtaining a favorable outcome in your forklift injury lawsuit.
How to Choose the Right Dallas Forklift Accident Lawyer
Choosing the appropriate Dallas forklift accident lawyer is crucial to the success of your case. You’ll want a lawyer with a proven track record of success in handling forklift accident cases and a deep understanding of the laws and regulations applying to these cases. It’s also essential to choose a lawyer with excellent communication skills who is responsive to your needs and compassionate and empathetic toward your situation.
The Reyes Browne Law team has these skills, making them the best option for anyone who has experienced a forklift accident. With over 40,000 case wins, over 30 years of experience, and 24/7 availability, those who trust Reyes Browne Law have the best possible chance to get the settlement they deserve.
We offer free consultation so you can feel comfortable in your case and with a lawyer. During the initial consultation, ask the attorney about their experience, past case results, and their approach to handling forklift accident cases. Feel free to ask for references from previous clients or to inquire about their fee structure. We’ll provide all the information you need, so you know you’re in good hands.
Contact Reyes Browne Law Today
In the aftermath of any forklift accident in Dallas, consulting with a skilled and experienced forklift accident lawyer like the lawyers at Reyes Browne Law is crucial. We’ll fight tirelessly on your behalf, seeking the compensation you deserve and holding negligent parties accountable.
If you’re curious about how much you can expect to receive in your case, use our case calculator for an estimate of your particular situation. With our help, you can focus on recovery, knowing that we’re protecting your legal rights.
Don’t wait; contact an experienced Dallas forklift accident attorney today to discuss your case.