Arizona car accident attorneys know that practicing law doesn't end with the black and white letters in the law books. Most real cases are complex and require experienced accident attorneys to apply rules that don't fit perfectly into the case in front of them to arrive at a just result. One area where this is especially difficult is in cases involving people riding in the backs of pickup trucks.
Arizona doesn't have a law specifically prohibiting riding in the bed of a pickup truck, but there are general laws that could apply in some situations. "Endangerment," for example, is a criminal offense that is defined as “recklessly putting another person at substantial risk of death or serious injury”.
Exactly what qualifies as a "subtantial" risk, and how unreasonable conduct has to be before a jury would believe someone was "reckless" are questions of fact, and therefore, something even the best Arizona car accident attorneys can only make an educated guess about.
The typical case of someone driving fairly safely with passengers in the back of their truck is unlikely to be prosecuted, but if the driver is also, say, speeding or following too closely, the probability goes up.
Because the element of "violating a statute" is absent, a person who is injured while riding in the truck bed is not “negligent per se” (negligent as a matter of law), though they may still be negligent. If the victim was injured because of the negligence of the driver of the pickup they were riding in, one key question will be whether the victim knew the risks of riding in the truck bed.
If so, the driver may be able to assert that the victim "assumed the risk" and thus cannot recover. Generally, it will be much harder to prove that a child knew and accepted the risks than an adult, especially if the adult is accustomed to riding in truck beds.
In much the same way that what constitutes endangerment comess down to the judgment of the jury, what counts as contributory negligence or assuming the risk also depends on the jury, which makes the assistance of an Arizona car accident attorney a vital part of protecting your rights.
It is crucial to understand that what your rights and liabilities are when a crash occurs with someone in the truck bed is highly dependant on your individual circumstances.
It is important to have the guidance of an Arizona car accident attorney with extensive experience in these types of accidents to ensure that you get the compensation you deserve.
To speak with a professional attorney who specializes in helping construction workers stand up for their rights, call Zachar Law Firm at (602) 494-4800 or visit www.zacharassociates.com.