If big trucks make you nervous on the road you’re in good company. Despite their critical role in delivering goods across the nation, the sheer size of tractor trailers makes them intimidating to many drivers. The fear isn’t entirely unfounded: It’s estimated that about 500,000 accidents involve trucks each year in the US, roughly 10 percent of them fatal. If you’re one of the unfortunate victims of a tractor-trailer accident, the aftermath will likely involve trying to determine if and how you can win a lawsuit. The following are just a few trucker mistakes upon which you could approach a negligence suit.
Failure to Secure Load
Tractor-trailers can literally carry tons of cargo and if any of it slides off, an accident can result. In fact, one 2014 report found that flying tires, lumber and other debris from trucks caused some 500 deaths and another 39,000 injuries. The causes can range from an improperly executed turn to a loosely secured load. For instance, a truck toting steal beams may lose its load if the driver stops suddenly on a hill, showering another driver in tons of metal. In other instances, a load may shift when a truck abruptly turns, resulting in a jack-knife collision with a smaller vehicle.
Texting and Driving
Texting and driving has proven a serious problem with drivers everywhere and truck drivers are no exception. When talking or texting on a phone, drivers tend to be distracted from the road, paying far less attention to other vehicles and reacting to them too late to avoid a collision. Add a truck to the equation – weighing 20-30 times a typical passenger vehicle – and the results can be nothing short of catastrophic. Unfortunately, this is an increasing way that truckers are guilty of negligence.
Truckers are often under the gun to get loads delivered under tight deadlines. The response: pressing the gas, swerving, running red lights and worse. When aggressive driving combines with a massive truck, even the best passenger vehicle driver may not stand a chance. Proving that a truck was aggressively driving can be tricky, but it’s a surefire way to win a negligence suit.
Most truckers are just hard working drivers trying to do their job efficiently. Unfortunately, a few bad apples spoil the bunch, and when it comes to truck accidents, the stakes are high. If you’ve been in an accident with a trucker you believe was negligent, call a Truck Accident Lawyer, to learn your options.