Here is a truck accident claim example one of our clients wrote for us. It explains the journey through their accident and how Revolution Law helped them through the after effects of the accident itself, from injury to compensation.
It was an early weekday morning in May in the suburbs of Logan. The weather was cool and the sky a crisp blue. I was a passenger in a truck and we were working, going from customer to customer exchanging garden bags. The workload was lighter than usual, and we were making good progress. The roads were quiet due to Covid.
We finished the service at a favourite customer's home - he always came out for a laugh and a quick chat- before we climbed back into the truck and started driving towards the next client's house only a few kilometres away.
We were doing less than 20 km/ hour slowly rounding a corner when we heard a frighteningly loud bang like an explosion. Immediately the truck veered and nosedived to the right-hand side, the wheels lifted off the road on the passenger side. The truck mounted the gutter and hit a small tree before bouncing back on all wheels and then, in seemingly slow motion tipped over and came to rest on the passenger side of the truck.
It all happened so quickly and yet so slowly, and I have relived those seconds many times in my mind. The cab's contents, invoice books, run sheets, brochures, pens, tools, ropes, a plastic basket and water bottles flying like meteors around the cabin space. The noise of the initial bang, the skidding and the thumps of the truck hitting the gutter, the tree cracking, the sound of our heavy truck twisting and falling to its side and landing with a crash. Glass breaking with an explosion and shattering. Then the stark silence before the local neighbourhood people poured out of their homes in concern. The sounds of sirens, police, ambulance and fire engines all making their way to us -to our accident.
I remember watching my business partner with both hands gripping the steering wheel in a desperate attempt to regain control. Later we find out that the steering wheel is useless if the wheels are not in contact with the road. He told me the next day that all he heard was my screaming.
I am belted in and remain in an odd slumped position despite the truck being on its side, my business partner is dangling out of his belt as gravity forces him towards me. I have shattered glass on the ground outside my window.
He climbs out of the cabin through his window, and I remain inside to find and gather the work phone and run sheets. I don't know why -it just seemed important at the time. People are looking at me through the front windscreen like I am a goldfish in a bowl. I clamber up inside the cabin using the steering wheel to get out of the window, someone has bought a ladder out so I can get down. I am in shock – horrified at the damage to the truck, confused about why it happened, and deeply concerned about our customer base and how we will work because work earns the money that pays my wages.
The truck looks exposed and crippled as it lies on its side, wheels in the air, oils leaking from somewhere in the engine. Broken glass and six cubic m of green waste are scattered over the road and footpath.
People bring out a towel for me to sit on and water to drink. But adrenalin has flooded my body, and I am unable to focus. The Ambo's are questioning me, asking if I am okay, and I brush them off, telling them I am fine. I am taking photos and videos, trying to piece together what had happened to cause such a devasting outcome.
Hours pass, and we have organised a bobcat to clean up the road. A massive tow truck comes to right our truck onto its wheels and move it to a holding yard. It is written off.
The emergency vehicles leave one by one and I retrieve what is needed from the truck and road, the glass is swept up and the neighbours thanked. My daughter has come and she takes me back to my home and stays to chat for a while.
Over the next few days, my shoulder is oddly sore and I find huge purple bruises on the backs of my calves. With all the external dramas of contacting customers and making arrangements for our workload I don't take much notice of the injuries expecting them to dimmish with time. Covid has changed my local Doctor's policies, and I eventually had a phone consultation, but she tells me to take painkillers and go to Casualty if required.
I am already taking Panadol and favouring my shoulder so it seems pointless to sit in a hospital waiting room, especially as Covid continues. I am stoic, strong and believe my body will repair itself. I have regular massages and purchase various creams that promise pain relief.
Weeks pass and life goes on. The compulsory time off physical labour finishes as soon as we reconfigure a new garden bag truck. My shoulder, which had been tender, now starts causing me more pain with the additional exercise. As time passes I begin seeing a bigger impact on more areas of my life. I have a few bee hives and struggle to lift up the heavy honey loaded frames. I visit my son in FNQ and noticed shoulder weakness when swimming in the beautiful waterfall rock pools.
I finally went to a doctor and asked for advice, and she suggested physiotherapy and making a personal injury claim.
I choose Revolution Law for a few reasons but especially as they specialise in MVA's (motor vehicle accidents) Lawyer Lisa explains everything, answers my questions, and it's quite simple to sign up.
The insurance company immediately start covering the physiotherapist's costs.
Over time Lisa gathers the evidence of the impact of the accident on my life. She gets the police report, my Doctor's records, tax documents, physiotherapy records and from all these and more she quantifies the cost to me, financially, emotionally and physically. She checks in on me occasionally to see how I am coping. It takes some months as it's not until the injury has settled that can we see the impact on my life going forward.
After some months the injury seemingly stabilised and I was asked to visit two Medical Specialists for IME reports (Independent Medical Examination) – one organised by Revolution Law and the other by the insurer. The appointments seemed to be a daunting prospect but they were easy – all they were looking for was the truth. Both Specialists asked questions and requested me to move my arm and shoulder in various ways.
The end was in sight and the time came for the 'Compulsory Conference'. This is a meeting between my lawyer and the insurance company. We sit at a table together, my barrister formally explaining why I deserved to be compensated and the insurer impersonally stating why I should not be compensated. In my case, the insurer asked some questions of me – easily answered and I got a chance to thank them for paying for the Physiotherapy sessions. After some too-ing and fro-ing between Lisa, the Barrister and the insurance representative they came to a conclusion and a sum of money agreed on. At all times I was included in the discussions.
This money comes from the Compulsory Third Party insurance we all pay with our vehicle registrations. This money is set aside so if someone is injured it will fund the cost to return them to the position they would be in if the accident did not happen.
If you have been in an accident as a passenger or a driver and have had injuries that impact your working and daily life – don't be afraid to reach out and seek help. It will stop you being in an ongoing world of pain. Having a lawyer to stand between you and the insurance company not only speeds up the process but takes away the pressure of dealing with a considerable amount of back ground work and lets you get on with healing your body and mind.
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