A truck accident is one of the most bone-chilling types of road incidents. The sheer size and magnitude of a big rig wreck can cause more damage than your average car accident. Without any cargo, a tractor-trailer can weigh an average of 35,000 pounds. The fully-loaded payload of a semi-truck is 80,000 pounds. When you consider that a car only weighs about 2,000 pounds, you can see why a truck accident is a recipe for certain disaster.
Although a truck accident has considerably more potential for unleashing havoc, the causes of a truck accident are usually the same as with any vehicle accident. When a trucker is negligent, their mistakes can cost lives.
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If you have been involved in a truck crash, you need a dedicated truck accident lawyer by your side. Call America’s Big Truck Attorney today! We have 28 years of experience helping people recover from trucking accidents. Your time is valuable, and we promise to respond to your message within 24 hours.
How Many Accidents Are Caused by Semi Trucks?
Trucking accidents happen much more often than you may realize. Here are some facts to help paint a better picture of how dangerous semi-trucks are:
- A semi-truck accident occurs about once every fifteen minutes.
- Half a million reported accidents a year involve an eighteen-wheeler.
- Big rig wrecks can result in serious injuries or tragic deaths.
- In recent years, the number of fatal crashes involving trucks has grown by 330%!
- 57% of truck accidents happen on rural highways, far from hospitals.
- Fatal truck accidents are more likely to include multiple vehicles.
What Causes Truck Accidents?
There is no single cause of truck accidents. The same forces that affect passenger vehicles also affect truck drivers. However, since a truck is heavier and longer than a passenger vehicle, an out-of-control truck can quickly unleash havoc on the interstate.
Here are some common causes of truck accidents:
Truck Driver Errors
Long haul trucking is a demanding job that requires covering huge distances without taking time for breaks or rest. More and more stressed-out truckers are using their phone when they shouldn’t or doing other activities that risk safety. Distracted driving takes the trucker’s attention off the road and puts all motorists at peril. Some reckless truckers may even resort to abusing drugs or alcohol to help pass the time.
A side effect of tight deadlines is that many weary truck drivers are too exhausted to drive. Even though regulations in place dictate how much rest they get, they often are stretched to their limit. Frequently they may speed or ignore traffic signals to meet their tight deadlines.
An unfortunate side effect of a trucker’s tight schedule is that they may not always be able to properly secure their cargo. Sometimes this is a result of poor logistics or loading dock protocols. Other times it is the result of negligent drivers. Either way, when cargo like boxes, crates, and barrels becomes loose in the trailer, the shifting weight can cause a driver to lose control of their rig. This can especially be a problem with oversized loads.
When a truck accident involves content spillage, it may involve hazardous material to leak onto the roadway or affect other drivers. Content spillage can make an already dangerous situation more disastrous.
Sometimes employers set unrealistic expectations on their drivers. Trucking companies may be liable for an accident if their strict timelines lead to an accident. Overworked drivers are more likely to make mistakes. Because time behind the wheel equals money, many drivers feel forced to falsify their driving records. Like poorly planned routes, other errors in preparation can end up putting drivers in harm’s way.
Failing to vet new hires properly can also lead to undertrained drivers. Undertrained drivers who can’t pass simple requirements shouldn’t be allowed to handle a motor vehicle. Unfortunately, many drivers slip through the cracks because their employers fail to do due diligence. Failure to obey or enforce FMCSA and DOT regulations may mean the employer is liable.
Truck Maintenance Regulations
A big rig has many components. These components need to receive service regularly to guarantee the safe transportation of goods. It seems like every day, we hear about how avoidable circumstances like defective tires, brake issues, tow-hitch defects, and headlight defects have resulted in incidents like steering failure. Trucks with malfunctioning or poorly designed parts can lead to catastrophic consequences on the open road.
Semi-trucks and their drivers need to undergo regular federal inspections. They must keep logs on service, repairs, and inspections for the last year. Additionally, each driver receives FMCSA scores for their fitness and driving ability. Incomplete records are a violation and can lead to legal repercussions.
Bad Road Conditions
An important part of trucking is checking the weather conditions of your route before you travel. Even then, bad weather is a regular occurrence for truckers. You never know when you might be having to deal with snow, rain, or wind. Ideally, truckers are trained to deal with these conditions. Even when the roads are clear, a tractor-trailer takes longer to stop than a car. An 80,000-pound truck needs to drive slower during these types of conditions. Poor training or dangerous driving can increase the likelihood of jackknifing or hydroplaning. Slippery or wet conditions can lead to severe tractor-trailer accidents.
If You’ve Been Injured In A Truck Accident, Let America’s Big Truck Lawyer Help
There are many common causes of truck accidents. Regardless of the cause of a truck accident, it can turn your world inside out. While trying to recover from your injuries, you may be dealing with mountains of insurance paperwork and the financial strain of having to miss work. Meanwhile, the insurance company may be fighting aggressively against a fair settlement. It isn’t right that you should have to fight alone.
After a truck accident, Call Darryl “The Hammer” Isaacs. We will represent your case for free and you won’t have to pay anything unless we win. As America’s Big Truck Attorney, we have successfully collected over a billion dollars for our clients. We are prepared to fight for the maximum possible outcome for your case.