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Who is responsible for truck accidents?

On Behalf of | Apr 16, 2024 | Truck Accidents

Semi-trucks serve a vital role in the U.S. economy. Still, driving on the highway next to one can be intimidating. Over 50 feet long and weighing over 75,000 pounds, they are designed to move large amounts of goods from one place to another. While they have safety equipment designed to protect the driver and avoid collisions with other vehicles, truck-related crashes occur with alarming regularity. The sheer size differential between these rolling cargo containers and victims’ vehicles often causes severe injuries or fatalities to occupants in other motor vehicles as well as irreparable damage.

Big vehicle, big problems

These vehicles’ designs are a significant problem. First off, semi-trucks have large blind spots and require more distance to stop than cars do. If a vehicle cuts in front of a truck too closely and then brakes, the semi-truck may not be able to stop in time, leading to a dangerous rear-end collision. When driving near a semi, it is also crucial to remember that they have blind spots on the sides that can extend up to 30 feet behind the truck. Underride crash collisions occur when a car hits the back of a semi and slides underneath it. These accidents often result in severe injuries or fatalities, particularly if the truck lacks certain safety features.

Who is responsible?

Truck-related crashes have a wide range of potential negligence and negligent parties:

  • Driver fatigue: Extended driving leads to tiredness, impacting reaction times. It could be drivers pushing themselves or employers overworking drivers.
  • Driver intoxication: Some drivers cannot cope with the rigors of the hours alone on the road.
  • Distracted Driver: Like other drivers, truck drivers are tempted to use devices or otherwise be distracted from watching the road.
  • Driver error: Employers may not properly train drivers before putting them on the road.
  • Mechanical failures: Tires and brakes can fail, causing a loss of control. These errors may be due to manufacturing or design issues or installation errors by mechanics.
  • Weather: Wind and rain make controlling large trucks more difficult.
  • Poor roads: Road design and maintenance are essential for safe driving, and poor roads are the responsibility of municipalities or government agencies.
  • Loading error: Warehouse staff may improperly load a trailer, which can lead to cargo shifting in transit.

Victims have rights

Those injured in a truck-related accident may have the right to file a legal claim. While the other side may try to settle the matter quickly, the injured often need medical treatment to determine the full extent of the injuries and related medical costs. A legal team for the injured can also help determine the loss of present and future income and the emotional pain and suffering endured by the victim.