West Virginia is known for its scenic mountain landscapes and historic battleground sites like Philippi where the first major land battle of the Civil War was fought. However, it's also unfortunately been ranked among the top 10 states with fatal accidents involving trucks. It's no surprise as the state is an interstate conduit for commercial trucking as it's bisected with major commercial routes like the I-77 and I-79.
So the next time you find yourself driving through the clouds along the New River Gorge Bridge, along with being captivated by your surroundings, it's important to remember the hazards around you. Below you will find key information on what to do after a truck accident in West Virginia.
Rendering Aid After a West Virginia Truck Accident
Like some states, West Virginia requires drivers involved in vehicle accidents not only to stop at the scene and provide their contact and vehicle information, but also to render "reasonable assistance" to anyone injured in the accident. This can include helping to transport any injured victims to medical facilities. The good news is that along with this Good Samaritan requirement, West Virginia provides civil immunity for anyone who in good faith renders emergency care at the scene of an accident.
Because of this, one of the first things to do immediately after an accident is determine whether anyone requires medical care, a frequent occurrence after a truck accident. After that, you can begin the process of collecting and recording information and pursuing your insurance claim.
Along with the potential for greater damages, truck accidents are distinguished from most other accidents on the road as they almost always involve a trucking company governed by federal and state commercial licensing laws. Under West Virginia law, trucking companies can be held vicariously liable for the actions of their drivers. However, while the company may end up as a defendant in a future lawsuit, it's important to note that West Virginia also has a modified comparative fault standard. This means that any possible recovery can be reduced based on a plaintiff's percentage of fault in causing the accident.
West Virginia Truck Accident Laws: An Overview
To learn more about West Virginia Truck Accident Laws and how they might impact you, see the chart below.
West Virginia Code Section 17C-4-1 (obligations during accidents involving death or personal injuries)
West Virginia Code Section 17C-4-2 (obligations during accidents involving vehicle damage)
West Virginia Code Section 17C-4-3 (duty to give information and render aid)
West Virginia Code Section 55-2-12 (statutes of limitations)
West Virginia Code Section 55-7-13a (modified comparative fault standard)
West Virginia Code Section 55-7-13d (vicarious liability and imputed fault)
West Virginia Code Section 55-7-15 (civil immunity for rendering emergency care at an accident scene)
|Statute of Limitations||
Personal Injury: 2 years from the date of the accident
Property Damage: 2 years from the date of the accident
Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
West Virginia Truck Accident Laws: Related Resources
Free Initial Evaluation of Your West Virginia Truck Accident Case
Experiencing a West Virginia truck accident can be a traumatic experience, but it's important to remember that there are avenues to recover for your personal injuries and property damage. The best way to protect yourself and your loved ones is to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney. Reach out to one near you today to arrange for a free initial evaluation of the facts of your case.
Contact a qualified attorney.