Common Causes of Truck Accidents
Most trucking accidents occur when large trailers (10,000+ lbs.) collide with other vehicles or pedestrians. Around 500,000 trucking accidents occur every year in the United States. Out of these accidents, 5,000 trucking collisions result in fatalities. One out of every eight traffic fatalities involves a trucking collision.
Some of the most common causes of truck accidents include:
- Impaired/intoxicated truck drivers
- Unlicensed drivers or poorly trained drivers
- Truck rollover due to defective design
- Disobeying safety procedures
- Failure to properly inspect trucks
- Insufficient/improper truck repairs and/or maintenance
- Failure to yield the right-of-way
- Fatigued truck drivers
- Truck drivers distracted by cellphone use, eating/drinking, etc. while driving
- Failure to check blind spots
- Collisions resulting from trucks backing up
- Collisions caused by third parties, such as other drivers
- Pressure to meet unrealistic quotas
- Mechanical or brake failure
- Truck tire defects, leading to blowouts
- Overloaded trucks or trailers
- Improperly transporting equipment
- Loads that shift weight/improperly loaded vehicles
- Violations of FMCSA regulations
In the majority of the cases our trucking accident attorneys handle, most of the deaths and injuries involve the passengers of regular vehicles while the drivers of the tractor-trailers usually escape with little or no injuries. Due to the large size of trucks, an accident can greatly endanger the lives of those in other smaller vehicles.
As the commercial truck business expands and more emphasis is put on profit over safety, our nation’s motorists are increasingly vulnerable to unsafe 18-wheeler drivers. A recent report released from crash tests showed an 18-wheeler truck traveling at 70 miles per hour has twice as much energy as one traveling at 50 mph. An additional concern is that cars created under industry-standard Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards are designed to encounter like-size vehicles, not 80,000-pound trucks.
Added hazards can include failure to install rear and side bumpers and high front bumpers that punch into automobile passenger compartments in the event of an accident. All of these situations combined account for the high percentage of serious injuries and deaths in trucking and passenger vehicle crashes.
Despite these startling statistics, some trucking companies do very little to train or monitor their drivers. Often, personal injury attorneys working a case like this discover that, because many trucking companies choose to pay their drivers by the mile or by the load, drivers have a financial incentive to exceed the speed limit, drive when they are tired, and cut corners on safety.
Working With Ammons Law Firm
It’s a fact that the largest number of fatal truck accidents occur in rural areas (68%) during the daytime (66%) and on weekdays (78%). About 700 truck drivers and passengers in truck cabs die each year. It is estimated that 3,700 persons in cars and other passenger vehicles die annually in collisions with heavy trucks. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety recently released the startling facts that in crashes involving large trucks and other vehicles, 98% of the fatalities occur to the people in passenger vehicles.
If a victim of a truck accident is lucky enough to survive the impact, the injuries resulting from these accidents are often devastating. Our attorneys commonly see trauma that takes years of medically supervised therapy to recover from. That therapy and other ongoing treatment typically means incredibly expensive medical bills.
Some of the most common injuries resulting from truck accidents include but are not limited to:
- Head and neck injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Loss of limbs
- Eyesight and hearing loss
- Broken bones
- Crush injuries
- Internal organ damage and hemorrhaging
If you or a loved one has been injured due to a truck accident, call The Ammons Law Firm LLP today for a free consultation.
What to Do after a Truck Accident
Many trucking companies and their insurance companies send out early response groups to the scene of a crash on the very day it occurs. This allows these individuals to collect evidence which may be used against the truck accident victim later. Our truck accident attorneys have years of experience that allows them to identify trucking company employees’ tactics right away. This, in turn, allows us to help preserve injured people’s rights.
It is critically important to have an experienced trucking accident lawyer on your side, protecting your interests as soon as possible after an accident. We always perform our own investigations independently of law enforcement and NTSB investigators. We work hard to immediately make sure the all evidence is recovered and preserved. Our “by the book” procedures can benefit your case in the future. Our experienced trucking accident attorneys immediately speak with the police officer and determine if the police report could have been influenced by any representative from the truck driver or trucking company.
It is advisable to seek legal assistance as soon as possible in order to determine whether you have grounds to file a claim for compensation. An experienced truck accident lawyer will be able to determine the viability of your case and can also discuss the various legal options available to you.