What Makes Waste Disposal Vehicle Crashes Unique?

Garbage trucks require a commercial driver’s license, or CDL, to operate. Therefore, garbage truck drivers must undergo rigorous training to safely and legally operate their vehicles. However, waste disposal vehicles are often much taller than 18-wheelers, with a high, heavy center of gravity. This combination makes them more prone to tipping over when making turns at high speeds. Waste disposal vehicles travel the same residential roads as everyone else. Garbage truck operators can easily misjudge the girth of these large vehicles and hit other cars on tight streets, as well as parked cars, as a result. Accidents can also happen when garbage trucks enter and leave the transfer station. A seasoned attorney has experience with wrecks involving trash disposal vehicles in Denton and could help an injured person understand the intricacies of their case and identify anyone who might bear liability.

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Liability in Denton Garbage Truck Collisions

When any accident occurs, injured parties assume that the other driver is to blame. However, when collisions involve CDL drivers, the city and/or private companies may share responsibility. A meticulous lawyer could review the facts of a garbage truck accident case and assist a claimant in targeting the correct parties for compensation.

Garbage Truck Driver

The obvious responsible party in a collision with a waste management vehicle is the person operating the truck. They receive extensive training to operate garbage trucks safely and prevent catastrophic injuries. However, it is difficult for even the most careful driver to be on alert 100 percent of the time. Unfortunately, even a moment of inattention can cost lives when a garbage truck is involved.

Private Companies

Many of Texas’s municipalities, including those in Denton County, have hired private entities to handle trash collection. On the surface, the private company will bear responsibility for their driver’s actions. However, the driver and company also interface and contract with governmental entities. After the company-owned trucks pick up trash at people’s homes, they take it to a transfer station, where it is loaded onto vehicles owned by the state-run Water Quality Group. 

Many of these trash and recycling facilities are owned and maintained by municipalities and local government bodies, and the tort protections afforded to governmental entities discussed in further detail below will typically extend to third-party entities that are contracted with such entities for services.


If the claimant is injured by one of the waste vehicles owned and operated by a municipal water system, they are limited to the remedies available under the Texas Tort Claims Act for suing a public entity. For example, the Texas Tort Claims Act prevents injured parties from bringing lawsuits against individuals employed under Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code, Chapter 101.106. This Act limits the liability of local government entities to $250,000 for all damages, regardless of how bad they are. If an employee of a private trash collection company kills someone in an accident before arriving at the transfer station, the case may be worth millions. If, on the other hand, that same garbage has been transferred to a larger 18-wheeler transport truck, and that transport driver was working as an employee of a local government agency, the most that claimant’s family can recover is $250,000.

The complicated nature of the local tort system is why having the advice of a dedicated lawyer with extensive knowledge in trash disposal truck collisions is essential for a successful case.


Contact a Skilled Denton Garbage Truck Accident Attorney Today

When you have been injured in a collision with a waste management vehicle, you need someone who understands the intricacies of state and local laws on your side. Reach out to our Denton garbage truck accident lawyers right away for the help you need to succeed in your case.

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Get The Help You Need Contact McCraw Law Group

If you are in need of a personal injury attorney in North Texas, please contact the team at McCraw Law Group today. We are ready to help you in a broad range of serious accident and injury legal issues, and offer multiple ways to reach us.

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If you are in need of a personal injury attorney in North Texas, please contact the team at McCraw Law Group today. We are ready to help you in a broad range of serious accident and injury legal issues, and offer multiple ways to reach us.

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