After being involved in an 18-wheeler accident, you may believe that you can proceed as you would if you were hit by a driver of a personal vehicle. This is not the case because an 18-wheeler accident and a typical car accident are very different. If you were driving a sedan, a pickup truck or even an SUV and you were hit by another vehicle of similar size, your injuries will not necessarily be very severe. This will definitely not be the case if you are hit by an 18-wheeler.An 18-wheeler weighs 80,000 pounds, and this is a lot more than the 4,000 pounds that regular automobiles weigh. Collisions between two 4,000 pound automobiles can cause injuries, but accidents between 18-wheelers and smaller cars can do much more serious damage to the automobile as well as to the people within. If the truck drivers are traveling above the speed limit, the driver and passengers in the automobile can be very severely injured in an incredibly short amount of time.After the Collision OccursAfter the accident, there is another important difference between a collision involving an 18-wheeler and one involving two smaller cars. In a collision between two cars, you and your insurance company will enter into negotiations with the other driver and their insurance company. You will not necessarily have to contend with an army of attorneys that has been set up to fight you at every turn. This will not be the case if you were hit by an 18-wheeler.Trucking Companies Are Prepared to FightThe truck driver is probably working for a company that maintains insurance on their vehicles, but will also have legal representatives who are there to protect their drivers’ and the company’s interests. It is necessary for them to be completely prepared to their interests because of the probability that an accident can occur between one of their drivers and another vehicle. Owners of trucking companies know that their livelihoods are on the line if they are not prepared to vigorously defend themselves every day. The chance of losing a large sum of money or closing their doors due to bankruptcy is too great.Because of what is at stake, trucking companies act quickly after a collision occurs that involves their drivers. They send a representative to the scene immediately so that they can begin collecting evidence and interviewing witnesses. After discovering anything that incriminates their drivers, they have been known to gather this evidence and destroy it.What You Can DoThe truck driver who hit you has brilliant well-prepared attorneys on their side, and you are going to need exactly the same thing. An important difference between an 18-wheeler accident and a typical car accident is that the truck driver must follow different state and federal laws than civilian drivers. Laws you were never required to learn. You will need a qualified professional who is well versed in these laws, and that is an 18 wheeler accident lawyer. Your accident may have occurred because the truck driver broke a state or federal law related to truck driving. A knowledgeable truck accident lawyer will be able to determine if this is the case and will be able to demonstrate this in court. Without a tractor trailer accident attorney protecting your rights, you would never know that the truck driver broke a major law and that this may entitle you to compensation for your injuries. Immediately contact a truck accident lawyer today if you have been injured in a collision with an 18-wheeler.