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What to Do After a Truck Accident in Colorado

Colorado has major interstate highways that traverse the state making it a vital connecting route for goods shipped from one side of the country to the other. It is also a state that has challenging weather conditions and mountainous roads.

These conditions have the potential to result in accidents involving commercial trucks and automobiles. While all accidents can be disruptive, truck accidents can be especially devastating. Accidents like the accident that occurred on I-70 near Denver when a truck crashed into stopped traffic can claim lives and result in serious injuries. If you or someone you know has been involved in a truck crash in Colorado it is important to know what to do.

Actions to Take at the Scene of the Accident

Whenever you are involved in an accident, your first steps should be to take care of any injured party. Colorado imposes a duty to render reasonable assistance when necessary or requested to any injured person in an accident, including:

  • taking the injured person for medical treatment; or
  • arranging for the person to be taken to medical treatment.

Once you have administered any immediate care that you can, you should then call for emergency assistance. Regardless of how severe or minor a truck accident is, you should always call the police. A police officer at the scene will obtain detailed information about the accident. However, you will still want basic driver information, such as:

  • Name and address
  • Telephone number
  • Vehicle registration
  • Insurance information

Colorado Truck Accident Laws

In addition to motor vehicle accident laws that apply to all accidents, commercial trucks have safety requirements that may make the driver or trucking company responsible for an accident. We have provided a plain-language summary below to help you understand the various laws that can apply.

Statutes

Colorado Statutes

  • CSR section 42-4-1601-1606 (Duties involving traffic accidents)
  • CSR section 13-21-111 (Contributory negligence)
  • CSR section 18-3-106 Vehicular homicide
  • CSR section 18-3-205 Vehicular assault
  • CSR section 25-35-303 Vehicular liability insurance required

Colorado Revised Statutes section 42-4-1606 requires a report of a traffic accident if it resulted in:

  • injury to, serious bodily injury to, or death of any person, or
  • any property damage.

If a police officer is at the scene of the accident, they will take care of the reporting. If there is no police officer, an accident report can be made through the Colorado Division of Motor Vehicles.

Federal Statutes

Who Is at Fault

Colorado Is an At-Fault State

In Colorado, the at-fault driver will have the liability and be responsible for paying damages caused in a car accident. Generally, the at-fault driver's insurance will pay for the other driver's medical expenses and property damage.

Damages

Colorado has damage cap limits on recovery in personal injury suits.

  • CSR section 13-21-1025 (Cap on pain and suffering)
  • CSR section 13-21-203 (Cap on wrongful death)
Federal and State Trucking Regulations

The Colorado State Patrol sets the safety standards and specifications for the operation of all commercial vehicles in CSR section 42-4-235.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) administers safety regulations for motor carriers that travel from state to state.

If the truck or the driver involved in your accident violated one of the safety regulations, you may file a claim with the FMCSA. Violations of the regulations can include:

  • Excessive number of hours the driver worked;
  • The driver's use of alcohol or drugs;
  • Improper maintenance of trucks and trailers; or
  • Insufficient driver training.
Statute of Limitations

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.

Colorado Truck Accident Laws: Related Resources

Seek Legal Help With Your Colorado Truck Accident Claim

If you are involved in an accident involving a large truck, you may have injuries that prevent you from working and medical bills that are piling up. You need help. A personal injury attorney from Colorado can help you obtain the compensation that you deserve. Don't wait too long to seek legal help.

You Don’t Have To Solve This on Your Own – Get a Lawyer’s Help

Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.

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