Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers Discuss the Most Common Causes Of Semi-Truck Accidents
Semi-trucks, 18-wheelers, delivery trucks and large commercial vehicles can create potentially dangerous hazards for motorist and passengers riding in smaller vehicles. Truckers not only need to be aware of all the roadway dangers that can occur with their heavy and large loaded vehicles, but must also use extra caution when other drivers are around. Even a minimal error on the road such as failing to use a signal before turning or dangerously passing can create a catastrophic accident with injuries and fatalities.
Usually, most truck accidents are caused by the truck driver or by other motorists sharing the road. When passenger car motorists are maneuvering around large trucks, the driver can create a serious scenario, leaving little time for the truck driver to respond to any unexpected action by other drivers. These could include merging improperly, changing lanes without notice, driving between two large trucks, pulling out on the roadway without sufficient acceleration and others.
As a professional driver, truckers must learn the skill of handling a big rig appropriately. It often involves being patient with other motorists on the road, and understanding that any misstep on their part could easily cause an accident. Typically, the most common causes of truck accidents where the trucker is responsible include:
Unrealistic Scheduling Imposed By Companies On Drivers
Many truck drivers are under pressure to meet unrealistic deadlines, when scheduling does not provide adequate time to drive safely and take breaks from driving. Many drivers are paid by the mile or the load, making it more profitable to drive at speeds higher than the posted limits. Unrealistic expectations to deliver the load on time often encourage the trucker to break the law, which can put motorists and passengers in harm’s way.
Inadequate Training Provided To Truck Drivers Before They Are Put Into ‘Real World’ Situations
When trucking companies hire truckers without proper training and driving experience, they are often at fault for placing other motorists and passengers at risk. Driver errors are a leading cause of serious truck accidents. These errors can include:
- Driving at a speed too fast to travel safely across varying road conditions
- Driving through a curve at too great a speed
- Aggressive driving
- Failure to use turn signals properly
- Unsafe passing
- Rear ending the vehicle ahead
- Driving at unsafe speeds on icy and wet roads leading to hydroplaning
- Jackknifing caused when the trucker loses control
- Leaving the roadway after losing control
- The inability to stop the truck to avoid a crash
- Misjudging the truck’s speed when approaching an intersection
- Changing lanes abruptly
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) maintains accurate records on the causes of truck accidents. Driving while impaired is one of the leading causes of serious truck accidents involving severe injuries and fatalities. Some of these impairments include:
- Driving while fatigued
- Operating the vehicle inattentively
- Driving while distracted
- Driving while medicated with prescription drugs, and/or over-the-counter drugs
- Driving under the influence of illegal drugs and/or alcohol
- Operating the vehicle on unfamiliar roads
- Driving in inclement weather
Mechanical problems are also some of the leading causes of truck accidents. Overloaded trailers and trucks, faulty brakes, shifting loads, and bad tires or brakes can cause a serious scenario where the truck driver loses control of the rig.
Many speed-related trucking accidents usually involve a trucker attempting to meet a scheduling deadline. Driving at excessive speeds with a heavy load can cause brakes to fail, which can result in a catastrophic collision. Blowing a tire at a high rate of speed makes it more challenging to control the heavy truck compared to driving at lower speeds.
Legal Remedies Available To Those Injured In An Motor Vehicle Accident Caused By A Truck
Personal injury attorneys who specialize in serious Illinois truck accident cases will investigate the trucker’s record when developing a strategy for a financial compensation claim. Often times, the lawyer will hire experts to reconstruct the accident, video record the site, talk to witnesses and examine damaged vehicles involved in the collision. Additionally, the attorneys will review the trucker’s log, the truck’s black box, and interview first responders to the accident.
Contact Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers at (888) 424-5757. Our attorneys provide legal services to obtain full compensation for victims who suffer injuries caused by a trucking accident. The funds can pay down debt like medical expenses and hospitalization, recoup lost income, and cover damaged property. Our skilled lawyers have a comprehensive understanding of how to investigate trucking accidents to ensure our client receives financial compensation at the conclusion of a lawsuit trial, or through an out-of-court settlement negotiated with all responsible parties and their insurance carriers.