Reach Out to an Injury Attorney After a Commercial Semi-Truck Accident
In a semi-truck accident, the passengers of motor vehicles usually suffer far more severe injuries than the trucker himself. There are many differences in a truck/motor vehicle crash. However, the major difference is the discrepancy in weight and size.
Cars typically weigh about 1.5 tons, while truck trailers can weigh up to 40 tons and are much larger. The extra weight and size make a huge difference in the outcome of the crash. A commercial semi-truck accident could leave an automobile driver severely injured and permanently disabled whereas truckers are usually uninjured in the crash.
Can’t I handle My Semi-Truck Accident Injury Claim Myself?
When a collision occurs involving a truck, multiple parties may be liable. Aside from the driver, the trucking company owner and the manufacturer may be liable for an accident. A government entity may also be responsible if dangerous road conditions caused an accident. In addition to that, truck drivers and the companies that employ them carry substantial insurance policies, but they are not always generous when it comes to compensating you for your injuries.
What Is Different About a Semi-Truck Accident
On average, big rigs measure 72 feet long, weigh 80,000 pounds and stand 13 feet tall. Because of their size, it takes 370 feet to stop a big rig traveling at 60 mph. Big rigs also face types of accidents that motor vehicles do not encounter, including:
- Overloaded or badly loaded cargo: An overloaded big rig trailer or unevenly distributed cargo can cause a rollover accident, in which other, smaller vehicles are impacted.
- Blind spots: The blind spots on big rigs surround them on all sides. Consequently, if a passenger vehicle is right in front, the driver cannot see it. The blind spot in the left lane stretches from the trucker’s mirror to about 75 percent of the length of the trailer. On the right, it’s even worse.
- Override/underride collisions: One of the most dangerous types of semi-truck accidents occurs when a tractor-trailer passes over a vehicle in front of it. This is called an override accident. When a smaller vehicle passes underneath a big rig, it is called an underride. Such accidents are frequently fatal.
- Jackknifing: When a trailer’s speed exceeds that of the tractor pulling it, the trailer can jackknife. Often, this type of accident is caused by poor weather conditions or by drivers who braked incorrectly.
- Braking accidents: A lack of maintenance is often to blame for brake failure in big rigs. The same thing can happen when a trucker brakes hard. Truckers sometimes disable the brakes in the tractor portion of their rig and rely instead on the brakes on the trailer to stop because it is expensive to replace them.
Which Trucking Errors Are Commonly Made?
Semi-truck accidents involving large commercial vehicles are frequently caused by negligent truck drivers and companies. Some common errors are:
- Driver training: Some companies hire drivers with little or no experience due to the lack of truckers nationwide. An inexperienced driver is more likely to be involved in an accident.
- Speeding: Traveling at high speeds is one of the main causes of semi accidents.
- Fatigued driving: The long hours of driving may cause fatigue to truck drivers, as they spend much of their time on the road. In some cases, the company will press the driver to make a delivery as quickly as possible, causing stress and fatigue.
- Distracted driving: Texting, playing with the radio or daydreaming can all lead to trucker distractions after long hours on the road.
- Lack of maintenance: Defects in brakes, the accelerator, steering, or tires can lead to a truck accident. The truck driver may be at fault. However, it could be the company is negligent.
Do I Need an Injury Lawyer after a Truck Accident?
An experienced semi-truck accident injury lawyer in Erie, Pennsylvania, can help you obtain compensation for lost wages, medical bills, and pain and suffering. At our firm, we dispatch a team of investigators to the truck accident scene to collect information for your case. As part of the investigation, they review the police report for accuracy and interview witnesses. The investigators also review the driver’s logbook to see if a violation of state and federal regulations has occurred. Our investigators also use various techniques to determine whether negligence played a role in semi-truck accidents.
The Travis Law Firm
The lawyers at the Travis Law Firm put their clients first and work hard to help them recover justice and compensation. Call us at (814) 277-2222, or contact us online to schedule a free case review. We will answer your questions after reviewing your case and discuss your options moving forward.