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What Happens if I’m in an Accident with a Fire Truck?

McAllen car accident lawyer

Car accidents happen every day on Texas roads. In most incidents, these collisions occur between passenger vehicles operated by private citizens. In some cases, however, accidents involve governmental vehicles, such as police cars, public transit, and fire trucks. 

If you are in an accident with a fire truck, you may wonder what to do next. You may be able to recover compensation, but the process follows different rules than a typical car accident claim. In these situations, it is important to hire a Texas car accident attorney who can guide you through the process and help you recover the compensation you deserve.

Who Is Liable in Accidents Involving Fire Trucks?

Like most states, Texas follows a fault-based system after a car accident. The person who caused the accident must pay for the victims’ losses, such as medical expenses, property repairs, and pain and suffering. A personal injury lawyer in McAllen can help you determine liability in an accident.

If the driver of a fire truck causes an accident, he or she will be at fault. However, fire trucks are usually owned by the government, and government agencies are liable for their employees’ actions. If you are involved in an accident involving a fire truck, you could file a claim against the appropriate government agency and recover compensation for your losses. 

Under the Texas Tort Claims Act, however, public officials are protected from liability if they were acting in good faith and acting within the scope of their duty. This can make it difficult for victims to recover compensation. You will need to prove that the fire truck driver committed a negligent act that led to the accident, such as the following

  • Driving while drowsy
  • Reckless driving
  • Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Failing to restrain equipment, which hits another vehicle
  • Failing to follow the rules of the road

If you are hit by a fire truck that is responding to an emergency, your ability to recover compensation could be impacted. Texas law requires drivers to pull over when a fire truck is approaching, and to move one lane over when passing an emergency vehicle parked on the shoulder of a road. If you fail to comply with these laws and collide with the vehicle, you could be liable for the accident.

Filing a Claim Against the Government in Texas

To file a claim against a state or local government agency, you must show that the firefighter who caused your accident was acting within the scope of his or her job. You must also prove that he or she would have been liable for the accident if he or she was a private citizen. 

Different agencies have different processes for filing your claim. In most cases, you must file a notice of a claim with the appropriate agency within six months of the accident. Some agencies have shorter deadlines. 

Speak to a McAllen Car Accident Lawyer

Proving a fire truck accident claim can be difficult. The fire truck driver could claim immunity from liability and state that you caused the accident in some way. To recover the compensation you deserve, you need an attorney on your side.

A McAllen car accident lawyer can conduct a full investigation into the accident and determine whether or not you can file a claim against the government. He or she can then craft a compelling claim for your right to compensation. After receiving medical attention for your injuries, contact an attorney to discuss your legal options.