Many trucks use the roads connecting towns to deliver and pick up goods daily. While this is good for a country’s economy, it’s unfortunate that trucks commonly cause severe and sometimes fatal accidents.
Accidents involving big rigs are usually very different from ordinary passenger vehicle collisions. From the massive size and weight of the vehicle to the carelessness of the driver, there’s a greater possibility of severe or deadly injuries. In fact, a recent study stated that about 4,842 trucks were involved in fatal crashes comprising passenger vehicles, motorcycles, and pedestrians.
For someone who commutes on roads commonly used by tracks, the chances of colliding with one of them are high. If this happens and you get hurt or damages occur, truck accident lawyers can help you get compensation.
What Causes Truck Accidents?
There are many reasons for big rig accidents. Typically, operator carelessness and errors are the main reason. However, the conditions of the trucks could also carry the blame in some incidents.
All in all, truck accidents cause severe and fatal damage to people and property. As a victim, things may get tough, and you may be left in a confused state. But, it would be best to always seek legal representation from qualified and experienced truck accident lawyers. You deserve justice and compensation after a trailer crash, and this is the right way to go.
Having an attorney by your side may not restore your broken leg or car immediately. But, experienced lawyers for truck accidents have the skills to negotiate a reasonable settlement amount as compensation.
Generally, the common causes of truck accidents include:
- Unsafe passing
- Erratic and careless driving
- Driver under influence
- Mechanical malfunction
- Road construction
- Overloaded cargo
- Severe weather
There could be more causes of the accident with a commercial vehicles. But, the above are the most popular ones that all drivers should try to prevent. Intoxication is the leading cause of death in truck drivers.
5 Types of Truck Accidents
Crashed trucks occur in many ways. Here are several types of truck accidents that you should avoid by all means.
1. Head-On Collisions
It occurs when a truck crosses over into the oncoming traffic and collides with another vehicle head-on. Usually, this is a fatal accident because the collision’s impact spreads on the entire front of the car. The driver and passengers can hardly escape this fatal force.
In most cases, a tired driver that can barely focus on the road and sleeps at the wheel causes head-on collisions. Still, a head-on accident can happen when the driver gets distracted by a cell phone, passenger, or a map when checking directions.
Generally, whenever the driver loses focus or averts attention from the road, there are high chances of a severe head-on collision. Drivers should always get adequate rest and sleep before a long drive. They should also avoid using cell phones when driving.
2. Rear-End Crashes
Sometimes an accident with a commercial vehicle can happen when the driver fails to stop on time. The truck hits the vehicle in front, causing a rear-end crash.
There are several reasons why rear-end accidents can occur. When truck drivers cause it, the vehicle’s heavy weight puts them at a higher risk. A speeding, heavy vehicle is very hard and dangerous to stop, even if the driver applies the brakes in full.
Passenger car drivers also make rear-end accident mistakes because of common overspeeding and distractions. However, the impact is not as severe as that of big rigs.
3. Rollover Accidents
Here, a truck driver loses control and rolls over to the side. This is a significant type of accident because it can harm the driver and anything else on the road.
In most cases, the trailer rolls over, lying on a passenger, bike, or another vehicle. The fatality rate in such a scenario is very high, especially for the other parties.
A rollover accident can also damage the road or any nearby structure. It can knock down a bridge or building or even roll down a cliff.
4. Underride Collisions
Underride accidents are similar to rear-end collisions. But, an underride occurs when commercial and passenger vehicles collide, and the vehicle glides beneath the truck.
Often, the car gets stuck and rides under the truck until it stops. An underride collision happens when;
- The truck’s brake lights are faulty or incorrectly used
- The driver didn’t signal when switching lanes
- The truck doesn’t have the required underride guards
Typically, drivers and passengers of other vehicles are at higher risk of fatalities or severe injuries from underride crashes. It’s always advisable to keep your distance when driving close to a truck.
5. Jackknife Accident
When a truck abruptly turns its part vertically to the other part, it causes a jackknife accident. Jackknife accidents with semi-trucks can also affect other vehicles. This is because the perpendicular part blocks the other lane.
In the sudden turning, the loads from the commercial vehicle can also spill, causing an obstacle. When drivers swerve to avoid hitting the cargo, they risk hitting other vehicles, causing more accidents.
It takes work to realign the truck when it starts to turn. Common causes of jackknife accidents include wet weather, fatigue, improper steering and braking, and speeding.
How Should You Claim For A Truck Accident?
Being a victim of a truck accident is the worst thing ever. There are several things you can do to help you make a claim. Ensure you know how to access the police accident report online and take into consideration the following;
Keep a record of all costs since the accident: This includes medical expenses, lost wages, and likely future lost wages. Aside from recording, keep all the receipts of payment safe, as this will help your attorney calculate reasonable compensation.
Claim within a short period of the crash: Different states provide a limited period of claiming after a truck accident. The court can reject your claim if you wait longer than the stated period. Hence, you won’t get any compensation.
Choose a qualified lawyer to represent you: Every lawsuit requires the representation of a suitable lawyer. The best truck accident lawyers can fight for your needs in a truck accident. Ensure you choose a very professional lawyer that’s qualified for the role. In most cases, you can settle the matter out of court with the help of an attorney.
As mentioned above, trucks cause different types of accidents. If you are a victim of a truck collision, immediate medical attention is crucial. This is necessary, whether you get hurt or not, to ascertain your safety.
Afterward, filing a lawsuit is essential. Even though some common causes of truck accidents are not deliberate, compensation is mandatory. Dedicated truck accident lawyers will help to fight for your justice and negotiate suitable compensation. It’s an excellent step to help recover from the physical, emotional, and property damage you experienced.