What’s worse than being involved in a car accident? Being involved in a truck accident. Commercial trucks’ design and sheer size make them more dangerous than the average car. If you or someone you love was recently the victim of a truck accident, you should speak with an experienced truck accident lawyer immediately to determine your options. If someone else’s negligence caused the truck accident, you should not bear the financial repercussions of your recovery alone.
Common Types of Truck Accidents
Of course, many truck accidents are similar to those of a standard car wreck. For instance, a truck can rear-end the vehicle in front of them, just as any motor vehicle might, but the damage is usually more severe. And several types of accidents more frequently involve trucks.
A common type of truck accident is a rollover. By design, tractor-trailers are much taller than other vehicles and have high centers of gravity, making them prone to rolling over. The risk of rollovers increases if cargo is improperly loaded (e.g., the weight is not evenly distributed).
An override accident occurs when a big rig truck drives over the top of a car in front of it. The tractor-trailer truck can crush a small sedan in front of it, causing severe and catastrophic injuries.
As you might have guessed, an underride accident is the opposite of an override crash but can be even more devastating. An underride wreck happens when a vehicle rear-ends a tractor-trailer truck and, as a result, goes underneath it. This situation can occur when a truck stops short or is moving slowly, and the car behind it crashes into the rear at a high rate of speed. Unfortunately, underride accidents can have tragic and immediate consequences.
You have probably heard of the term jackknife concerning tractor-trailer trucks. Jackknife incidents are prevalent with big rig trucks, especially in inclement weather. A jackknife accident occurs when the truck’s trailer swings perpendicularly to the cab. The truck usually ends up in an “L” shape, often across the road. Jackknife accidents can cause damage and injuries to several cars within seconds. As the trailer swings, it can wipe out vehicles in its path and can cause pile-ups from the roadway being unexpectedly and suddenly blocked.
Common Causes of Flower Mound Truck Accidents
There are many potential causes of semi-truck accidents, some common to any motor vehicle accident and some unique to big rig trucks. The most common causes of truck accidents include the following.
Drunk driving can have catastrophic consequences when operating a semi-truck. Because of the particular dangers getting behind the wheel of a semi-truck drunk poses, commercial truck
drivers must have a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.04 or less to legally be allowed to drive, compared to the 0.08% BAC limit for non-commercial drivers.
As with any motor vehicle crash, distracted driving is a prominent cause of truck collisions. Distracted driving can include many scenarios, including texting while driving, talking on the phone, looking for something that fell on the floor, etc. Semi-trucks are more challenging to maneuver and take much longer to slow down than a standard car. If the driver takes their eyes off the road for even mere seconds, it can end in a tragic accident.
Lack of Rest or Sleep
The nature of the job often has truck drivers behind the wheel for long periods, and while there are specific regulations to ensure drivers have enough rest and sleep, they are not always followed.
Dangerous or Improper Cargo Load
Proper distribution of weight and cargo load is extremely important to prevent truck accidents. The failure to properly load the trailer can result in a tragic rollover accident.
Even though it shouldn’t happen, sometimes unqualified drivers operate semi-trucks. If the trucking company does not conduct a thorough background and driver’s license check, an incompetent driver can end up behind the wheel, leading to an accident.
Manufacturer Defects or Mechanical Failures
Failure to properly service or maintain a commercial truck can lead to an increased likelihood of a malfunction and, as a result, an accident. In addition, a manufacturing defect, such as a defective engine part or brake caliper, can lead to a devastating crash.
Determining Liability for a Truck Accident Lawsuit
If you are contemplating filing a civil lawsuit after a truck accident, it is essential to determine who might be liable. More than one party can be on the hook for damages, and identifying these parties can be crucial to the success of your case:
- The truck driver,
- The trucking company,
- The truck manufacturer,
- The mechanic, and
- The warehouse or shipping company.
Sometimes identifying the responsible party is obvious, while other times, it is not immediately apparent; only after investigation and discovery are the responsible parties identified. We have the resources, knowledge, and experience necessary to identify the possible liable parties and pursue a claim for damages.
Flower Mound Truck Accident Lawyers
Truck accidents are complexand often involve severe injuries, significant damage, and multiple parties. Having a knowledgeable and skilled truck accident attorney on your side can make navigating the days and months following the accident more manageable. An experienced attorney will investigate the cause of the accident, gather evidence, and advocate for you in settlement negotiations and through a potential trial. For the last decade, Austin Hartley has dedicated his practice to helping victims of negligence seek the compensation they deserve. Contact our firm today to speak with an experienced attorney.