Even trucks that are on the road legally can cause devastating truck accidents in Miami and other cities. However, some trucks are even more dangerous because they are on the road when they shouldn’t be. Illegal trucking can include:
1) Trucks driven by illegal drivers. In 2006, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) reported 15,000 suspicious commercial driver’s license (CDL) holders. After an investigation, about a third of them gave up their licenses or had them revoked. Illegal licensing can take place in a number of ways. Someone who is not eligible for a CDL may falsify their identity or other documents in order to obtain a license, for example. In some cases, drivers may pay someone else to take their tests or may pay to get a fake CDL. Some safety experts think that there may be thousands of illegal drivers on the roads, and these drivers have generally not passed the strict physical tests and driving tests needed to operate big rigs and commercial trucks. Quite simply, they mean a bigger risk of truck and car crashes in Miami and other cities.
2) Trucks without adequate registration and attention to legalities. Truck drivers, trucks, and their cargo must be correctly registered and licensed with a DOT number, registration tags, MC number, and other verification. It can cost thousands of dollars to get legal operating credentials and insurance. As a result, some truck carriers in Miami are negligent in this regard and do not take all the proper steps to keep their fleets legal, which can result in traffic crashes and fatalities. In some cases, trucking companies are penalized for their actions. For example, West Palm Beach’s U.S. district court recently fined a Florida trucking company $750,000 for illegal transport of hazardous materials. In some cases, however, the illegal activities are not uncovered until after a crash has taken place.
3) Illegal trucks engaged in illegal activities. Some trucks are not legally registered and insured because of money concerns. Some, however, are engaged in illegal operations such as smuggling people or goods. In these cases, truck drivers may not be registered correctly in an effort to cover their tracks. If you are in an accident with this type of illegal truck, it can be difficult to get compensation since the truck driver’s or truck carrier’s insurance company may deny the claim. In some cases, the truck may not even have insurance.
It can be terrifying to be in a truck accident. If your truck accident involves a truck that is in any way illegal, though, it can be even more challenging. You are more likely to be involved in a hit and run accident in Miami in these cases, since a driver may decide to leave rather than risk being caught with illegal cargo or an illegal truck. The truck may be uninsured or you may find yourself involved in an insurance dispute when you try to make a claim.
If you suspect any illegal activity at a truck or car accident scene, do not hesitate to contact Flaxman Law Group. The attorneys at our full-service law firm can advise you of your rights in a free consultation.