While trucking accidents claim a small percentage of the total number of
traffic collisions each year, the truck crashes that do occur can be deadly.
Semi-trucks are the “monsters” of the road, and because of
their massive size and weight, most fatalities from large
truck accidents are the occupants riding in passenger vehicles, not the truck drivers.
That is because cars, trucks, and SUVs are naturally vulnerable when up
against a massive tractor-trailer. The sheer size and weight of the truck
is enough to seriously damage even the safest rated passenger vehicles.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Highway Loss Data
Institute, trucks can weigh up to 30 times more than passenger cars, and
because they are much taller, smaller vehicles can slide under semi-trucks
in underride crashes. When this occurs, the accident is usually fatal.
Another factor in truck crashes is the braking capacity of large trucks.
A loaded tractor-trailer needs 20 to 40 percent more distance than cars
to come to a stop, and that distance is even greater when you factor in
poorly maintained brakes, icy or wet roads.
One of the biggest causes of concern in regards to truck accidents is truck
driver fatigue, a well-documented crash risk. Commercial truck drivers
are required to follow the federal hours-of-service regulations, but to
drive further distances in less time, many truck drivers violate these
rules intentionally or at the insistence or pressure of their employer
to meet deadlines.
When Truck Driver Negligence Leads to Crashes
Truck drivers are human, which means they are prone to errors in judgment
and engaging in risky driving behaviors. When a truck accident is caused
by truck driver negligence, it can usually be traced back to one of the
- Aggressive driving
- Trucker is unfamiliar with the road
- Trucker is a new and inexperienced truck driver
- Truck driver fatigue (e.g. falling asleep at the wheel)
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (including sedating medications)
Texting while driving (this is illegal for truck drivers in all states)
- Driving with an improperly or overloaded truck
- Driving with a poorly maintained vehicle
Personal injury cases involving trucks generally have more parties that
could potentially be held liable. For example, if you were involved in
a crash with a commercial truck driver who was driving fatigued and over
the standard trucking hours due to pressures from their employer to meet
a specific deadline, the truck driver and the company they would for could
be held liable. Because there are so many parties involved, this type
of litigation can be quite complex. With the help of a knowledgeable
Atlanta auto accident lawyer, you could recover compensation for your medical bills, loss of
pay, property damages, pain and suffering.
Injured in a truck accident? Contact The Weinstein Firm, LLC
right away to find out if you have grounds to file a personal injury claim